Bill Maynard

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Loon Photography Tour

The call of the loon is perhaps the most recognizable of all bird sounds in North America. We all know the call of the loon but few have had the opportunity to get up close and personal with these magnificent birds in quiet natural settings as it requires local knowledge, patience and above all a boat. Welcome to a loon tour that is held in the beauty of Algonquin Park, the highest population of nesting common loons in the world. Sparkling fresh water lakes lined with marshes, black spruce and giant white pines makes for the perfect setting for a day on the water photographing loons with their chicks. This loon tour is sure to fill your memory banks.

Photography Guide: Michael Bertelsen

What to Bring:
On this loon tour you will be working from a boat during this tour and as such may be subject to rainy conditions or full on sun and everything in between.  Keep a close eye on the forecast the day before your trip and dress accordingly.  If rain is expected you’ll need to select clothing that will keep you dry and comfortable during your time on the boat.  Fabrics like Gore-tex are an excellent choice to repel the rain.

If the forecast calls for a sunny day then sunscreen, sunglasses and a hat would be recommended.

Your Camera Gear: If you wish to discuss specifics regarding which camera bodies and lenses you own and which ones are best suited to the trip, Mike will be happy to discuss that with you.

On the trip, if rainy weather is a possibility you’ll want to bring along a rainproof cover for your camera – both AquaTech and Think Tank Photo make excellent models that fit most cameras.

Polarizing filters are often used to reduce glare when shooting scenes that include water or wet subjects.

While there is not room for a tripod in the boat feel free to bring a monopod to stabilize longer lenses  from the deck.

What’s Included

What’s Included:
Light breakfast of yogurt, fruit juice , water and granola bars.
Personalized instruction offered at all times.
Chilled bottled water always on hand.
All taxes

What’s Not included:
Transportation including flights to and from the hotel.
All Accommodations, but will gladly recommend something.
All meals except breakfast



Michael Bertelsen, your host on this loon tour is a Nature Photographer, Guide and Instructor all wrapped into one and a very likable guy to boot. I first joined Michael on one of his moose/loon photography tours by boat in July 2010 and I must say I was very impressed. As it turned out I had a family emergency come up on my first tour date and Michael graciously allowed me to reschedule. Trust me when I tell you not all tour guides are this accommodating so I have to applaud Michael for his integrity and how he conducts his business. I also very quickly came to realize after a few hours on the lake with Michael that he sure knows his way around Algonquin Park and where the loons are going to be so you can count on him to get you in front of the loons and their chicks.

What makes this loon tour so special

The very stable one of a kind boat is specifically laid out for Loon photography. Very comfortable swivel seats are designed to drop down to allow extreme low level photography; just a mere 16 inches from lens to the surface of the water. The boat has a flat floor as well as an outboard motor that will get us to our destination quickly. When we arrive a silent electric motor gets us in close to the loons and offers you up close photo opportunities.

Michael monitors 11 pairs of nesting loons on 9 different lakes. This has made it possible to offer photographers a 90% loon chick success rate since 1997. Offering different lakes gives the photographer a selection of water colors and reflections as well as other wildlife such as moose, black bear, beaver, muskrat and a selection of marsh birds like blue herons, kingbirds, bitterns, kingfishers to name a few.

You can expect Michael will be constantly offering helpful shooting tips, answering questions and explaining what to expect next. As a result, you’ll be ready when the action happens and come away with a card filled with excellent loon images.

Dates and Cost

Scheduled 2 or 3 Day Loon & Chick Photography Tours
Maximum 4 photographers

Available Dates

    • 3 Day Loon Tour & Chicks $1,018.70 July 01-03, 2020 Full
    • 3 Day Loon Tour & Chicks $1,018.70 July 05-07, 2020 Full
    • 3 Day Loon Tour & Chicks $1,018.70 July 08-10, 2020 Full
    • 3 Day Loon Tour & Chicks $1,018.70 July 12-14, 2020Full
    • 2 Day Loon Tour & Chicks $745.80 July 15-16, 2020 Full
    • 2 Day Loon Tour & Chicks $745.80 July 19-20, 2020 Full

2021 Dates To Be Announced Fall 2020 – Inquire to have your name added to the waiting list for first choice of available dates.

Payment, Registration and Refund Policy
A non-refundable 50% deposit is required to reserve your spot. Once the deposit is received your spot on the trip will be confirmed with an email that includes a detailed itinerary with hotel information. Balance in full is due 2 months prior to the workshop start date. A reminder will be sent to you via email, but it is the sole responsibility of the participant to remember this due date. If the balance is not received in time, we will attempt to fill your spot from the waiting list. If the spot is filled, you will lose only the deposit. Checks can be made payable to Wild Outdoors Limited and sent to Michael Bertelsen P.O Box 1012, Churchill, Manitoba, Canada, R0B0E0. Payments can also be made through Paypal (add 3% surcharge) or e-transfer.

Travel Insurance
Whenever traveling with Wild Outdoors Photography travel insurance and health insurance is highly recommended.

Wild Outdoors Photography does not accept responsibility for any losses or additional expenses due to delay or changes in air or other services, sickness, weather, strike or other causes. The tour participants shall bear all such losses and expenses. Wild Outdoors Photography will take all reasonable steps to ensure that services provided are of high standard. Wild Outdoors Photography will not accept liability for physical injury, loss, damage or expense resulting from
circumstances beyond our control. By agreeing to participate in a Wild Outdoors Photography workshop, each participant agrees to release, indemnify and hold harmless Wild Outdoors Photography, its agents, employees, shareholders, directors, attorneys, and contractors as more completely set forth in the liability waiver that will be provided. The waiver must be signed and received by Wild Outdoors Photography prior to participation.

If the scheduled tours or dates do not work for you, you may have the option to book your own private trip where you can pull together your own group of photographers up to four participants which is the maximum capacity for the boat. Contact us for availability.



``Mike, Just wanted to say thanks for our Loon Tour last week. Both Michele & I got some great shots. You're a real expert at knowing these Loons & how to get us superb photo ops, without stressing them!! I'll be back for sure``

Same S.

``Michael, I want to express my thanks for your recent Loon Tour (July 12/13) that I had the pleasure of attending. The efforts you made to provide your guests with outstanding opportunities exceeded my expectations. Your knowledge of the subject matter and how best to approach a setting from a photographic standpoint ensured that everyone came away with fantastic shots and memories. Any level of photographer could attend one of your tours and come away completely satisfied with the experience you offer.I am already thinking of attending future sessions in the years to come.``

Richard P.

``Hi Michael, Andy, Rosemarie and I all wish to convey our special thanks to you for providing such a fantastic workshop for us! Comments from the group as follows:Thanks for being so helpful and professional while we were taking our photos eg. Loon approaching from the left etc., watch as she is bringing a big fish for the baby. This is most helpful when one is looking through the lens.We all had fun and loved your planned itinerary as well as providing such an excellent finale by taking us down the river which was beaming with beautiful wildlife creatures!``

Rosemarie & Andy

Get In Touch

Interested in this loon tour, giving us feedback or perhaps putting together a private, custom adventure?

Whatever the case, please use the short form below to get the conversation started.

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