Each tour LIMITED to six (6) travelers. Due to popular demand, I’ve added a second tour. Here are the 2019 dates:
March 31 ~ April 9, 2019 ~ SOLD OUT
~ OR ~
April 13 ~ 22, 2019 ~ SOLD OUT
Please join me in 2020! ~ The 2020 “Pumas & Peaks of Patagonia Photo Tour“ is now posted.
Join me in Chile for my “Pumas & Peaks of Patagonia Photo Tour ~ 2019” and photograph wild pumas (called mountain lions or cougars in the US) in their natural habitat on a private ranch situated against the breathtaking backdrop of Torres del Paine National Park.
This is the experience I wrote about in the April 2018 issue of Outdoor Photographer.
We’ll also focus on doing landscapes of the rugged snow-capped peaks & open grasslands within these dramatic environs.
So that everyone gets the best experience possible, this tour is limited to six (6) photographers.
I once would have told you getting such images was impossible, but after my experiences traveling & leading tours here I know that photographing these incredible cats is not only possible, but it’s an experience like no other — in part due to the dramatic location & also because so few other people are here this time of year.
You can go your whole life in puma country and never even see one. In this location we are able to not only see, but have long photo opportunities with several different cats.
We photograph WILD, free-ranging animals — not captive cats, not game farm animals; the real deal in their authentic habitat.
We’ll be in the Southern Hemisphere in autumn, which should make for some good landscape shots. But this place is gorgeous no matter when you visit!
We will stay on a 17,000-acre private ranch that shares a fenceline with the national park. Most of our puma tracking will take place on the ranch.
The pumas are the main focus, but there are also photogenic guanacos, rheas, flamingos, and the near-threatened Andean condor. And we never know what other wildlife we might see.
Our days will consist of heading out before dawn to look for pumas or other photo opportunities, back to our lodging area for lunch and back in the field from about 3PM until dark. The last day will feature a special visit to an Andean condor roost on our way back to Punta Arenas.
PLEASE NOTE: This is an estimated schedule and we’ll do our best to stick to this itinerary, but certain conditions may necessitate changes. Good photographic experiences and plenty of chances to view wildlife will be our goals at all times.
First Day of Tour:
Arrive Punta Arenas. Welcome dinner and overnight in a hotel in town.
Depart after breakfast for Torres del Paine. Lunch at the hotel and begin prowling for pumas.
Third ~ Eight Day:
Daily photo excursions for pumas, guanacos, rheas, and other photo ops.
Depart Torres del Paine. Stop for an afternoon of Andean Condor photography at another private ranch. The goal is to photograph the birds from their flight level. Farewell dinner at a local restaurant. Overnight in Punta Arenas.
Breakfast. Head home.
WHAT YOU CAN LEARN ON THIS TOUR:
- What makes a good wild cat photo
- Flight photography (when we visit the Andean Condors)
- Landscape photography composition & metering tips
- How and when to apply HDR techniques
- How to look for & create animalscapes.
A note about instruction on my photo tours:
Since skills levels vary so much on photo tours, I tailor my teaching to individual needs. Please do not be shy about telling me what you need.
- Double-occupancy accommodations from arrival in Punta Arenas
- Meals from arrival in Punta Arenas on the first day of the tour to breakfast the last day of the tour
- Ground transportation
- Private ranch access fees
- National park entrance fee
- Local guides & puma trackers
- An extensive dossier
- Jeff’s guidance, instruction, image review
WHAT’S NOT INCLUDED:
Lodging that’s not included in the itinerary. Airfare, travel insurance, tips, alcoholic beverages (other than at dinner), bottled drinks (including soda & bottled water — water will be provided, but not as bottled water), medical expenses, laundry service, phone calls, and any other personal items.
The extensive dossier that we send out will include info about tipping protocols for this tour.
LOGISTICS, EQUIPMENT & SUCH:
This tour is more physical than my other offerings. We will be primarily following pumas on foot. To get the most from your experience you should be capable of walking two to four miles (at the most) per day carrying your equipment. One to two in the morning and again in the evening. Not every outing will be that long and we may even be able to photograph from the vehicle at times. You can walk slowly, 2-3 MPH.
You’ll fly into the airport in Punta Arenas (Presidente Carlos Ibáñez International Airport / Spanish: Aeropuerto Internacional Presidente Carlos Ibáñez). The airport code is PUQ. Typically, this necessitates a change of flights in Santiago, Chile. Your total flight time, obviously, depends upon where you begin your journey, but from Houston it takes me around 9 1/2 hours to get to Santiago and then typically another 3 1/2 hour flight to Punta Arenas from there.
I suggest arriving a day before the tour begins as you will be tired from your long journey. We will stay the first and last nights of the tour at Diego de Almagro hotel if you would like to book a night there before the tour actually begins.
As our departure date grows closer, we’ll snail mail you a detailed dossier with info about our destination, the wildlife there, the currency, a packing list, an equipment checklist, and more.
In the meantime, if you’re wondering what type of photography equipment you’d need/want to bring along on a photo adventure such as this here’s that EQUIPMENT CHECKLIST (PDF) for your convenience.
You’ll want to bring your longest lens (a 400mm at the least ~ a 600mm is even better; LensRentals.com is a great place to rent one if you don’t yet own one). If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.
NO VISA REQUIRED:
Chile has no visa requirements for U.S. or Canadian citizens.
GENERAL INFO / SIGN UP:
o FIRST TOUR: Sunday, March 31, 2019 ~ Tuesday, April 9, 2019 ~ SOLD OUT
o SECOND TOUR: Saturday, April 13 ~ Monday, April 22, 2019 ~ SOLD OUT
- SPACE FOR: SIX (6) in each tour
- PAYMENT DUE DATES: A total of half the cost of the tour due 6-months before departure. Remaining balance due 60-days prior to start date of tour.
Please read our CANCELLATION POLICY before purchasing
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