"Ghosts of the North"
Spend an Evening Observing and Photographing Wild Snowy Owls
Location: Simcoe County or Waterloo Region / Duration: ~3 hours / Time of Year: Jan-Mar
Location: Simcoe County + Waterloo Region / Duration: ~3 hours / Time of Year: Jan-March
The hobbyist or serious photographer interested in photographing wild snowy owls
Families/couples/individuals looking for a unique way to spend an afternoon together observing these amazing wild creatures
$199 per group
Simcoe County + Waterloo Region
(specific location provided upon booking)
Each winter, a large number of snowy owls migrate thousands of kilometers to take up temporary residence in select regions throughout Southern Ontario. Spend an evening with your experienced guide, Chris McQuarrie, exploring concession roads by vehicle as we scan fields and farmlands for owls! Oftentimes, they will perch by roadside poles or fence posts, allowing for reasonably close viewing and photography opportunities. In addition to guiding you to a region with a reliable owl population, your guide will provide photography instruction to help you capture an image you're proud to hang on your wall. Two pairs of binoculars per group will be included for your use during the tour.
Price is a fixed total per group (1-5 people, 1 vehicle maximum). Travel will be by vehicle to the announced meeting location, and then down long sections of concession roads as we continue to drive separately. Clients are responsible for their own transportation to and during the tour as your guide leads the way. Viewing/photography opportunities are often possible from inside a vehicle with a window down; however, based on comfort, stepping outside may be encouraged. It is therefore recommended to bring very warm winter gear for comfort in the outdoors. Upon booking, a general location for the tour will be disclosed; the specific location will be provided the date of the tour. Tours are expected to run regardless of weather (with some exception being given to extreme weather conditions). Full terms and conditions provided prior to booking. Contact me below with your inquiries or date preferences!
Clients are encouraged to bring patience as well as their sense of adventure, as we observe these majestic owls of the far north! Please bring your own beverages, snacks, and warm clothing (including head/neck coverings, gloves, and warm footwear).
While on tour, it is critical that we do not stress the owls unnecessarily by approaching too closely or purposely flushing them from their positions in order to obtain "flight shots". Owls pick their locations based on where they foresee having hunting success, and approaching them closely causes them to lose focus altogether as they are distracted by humans, or relocate to less desirable hunting sites. There will be no baiting either.
COVID 19 Safety:
In order to maintain social distancing, we will travel together but in separate vehicles. Walkie-Talkies will be provided so we can communicate as we adventure!
Wow! What an incredible, one-of-a kind experience. If you're looking for something new and fun to do in the winter, I would highly recommend this!! Chris was spectacular at communicating and we could tell he takes a lot of care in his work, even arriving early to do some scouting so that we were not disappointed. He also spoke of the ethical way to observe owls without baiting our getting too close, so we could tell he cares a great deal for the wildlife. Chris supplied binoculars for each of us, and communicated throughout the drive as we followed along in our own vehicle, which added a nice touch of convenience and comfort. The outing itself was marvellous! Not only did we see an incredible amount of beautiful snowy owls, but even saw a pair of Bald Eagles, which I imagine was only due to Chris's experience with the area and keen eye for spotting. 100% recommended!
-Lauren, Jan 2021
A fun hunt for snowy owls. We were pleased to spot and observe some! Would not have been able to find them on our own.
-Jane, March 2021
This was an awesome experience! We saw at least a half a dozen snowy owls! Chris was very knowledgeable and respectful of the area and adhered to the rules of social distancing. He was very prepared with sanitized binoculars and walk-in talked to communicate while in our cars. We got some fantastic pictures. Would highly recommend Chris if you have an interest in snowies. He gave us a discounted rate for a group even though there were just 2 of us.
-Sue, Feb 2021
Chris was a great host and had a remarkable ability to spot snowy owls in spots that would be very challenging on your own. We saw a few different owls in this outing and part of the fun was the driving around and patience required before sighting one. Some of the owls were on nearby telephone poles which allowed for a great viewing with the provided binoculars. Chris was also gracious enough to take some pictures on our behalf since we didn’t have our own camera with a telephoto lens. Overall, a really fun experience.
-Tameez, March 2021
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