A photography team and their body of work
The photography team Dea and Brad Vogel have spent over 13 years photographing wildlife in Denali National Park and Preserve. In this issue’s photo essay, they share with readers some of the images and locations within the park where Denali’s favorite denizens reside.
Our photo collection in Denali spans more than a decade, with most images taken from mid-August to early September. A Professional Photographer Special Road Travel Permit allows us to drive the full length of the Park Road, providing us with over 92 miles of opportunities. We shoot mostly from the road, though we took a few shots during short hikes. With hours waiting and watching, we’ve learned that photographing in Denali is not always easy.And though we hike, we never hike in search of bears. First, safety is important, and bears move extremely fast. Second, the bears of Denali have such a short season to add weight before winter sets in; we don’t want to disturb them. Instead, we wait patiently for that two-second opportunity, often roadside, when a bear looks up from eating berries. Over the years, lynx have been very elusive, but one morning we were lucky to find two enjoying the sun on Polychrome Pass and had the opportunity to photograph them for an extended period. And as is often the case, a busload of visitors shared the special moment with us. Tourists also find wilderness within reach, with bears, caribou and Dall sheep foraging, grazing and climbing just off the road.