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Walrus and cub, Storoya, SvalbardPhase One XF 100MP, 240mm Schneider…

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Walrus and cub, Storoya, Svalbard
Phase One XF 100MP, 240mm Schneider lens, f5.6 @ 1/800 second, ISO 100

I've met some wonderful guides on the voyages I've made to the polar regions. They all have a passion for their jobs and pinch themselves that it's a job! And a good guide will get you great photos.

On a voyage with Kevin Raber and Rockhopper Tours to Svalbard last year, we were doing a zodiac cruise off Storoya island, up in the north-east of Svalbard. Our guide was scanning the horizon and way in the distance, saw an iceberg with an unusually shaped top. Someone like me would think it was just the shape of the ice, but our guide was thinking it could be walrus.

And she was right! As we closed in, we cut the motor to an idle and drifted quietly up to the iceberg. There were a dozen or so walrus, including a few pups, resting. They didn't seem at all fussed by our presence as we passed by, until something spooked them and they vacated the iceberg. 

My photo is of the mother instructing her pup to take a dive.

I shot perhaps 50 images as we approached the iceberg and continued afterwards as well. A lone, single-tusked male remained on the iceberg and as we moved away, he made a great shot - which I must process some time. The point is that you never know in a situation like this which shot is going to be the best shot, so just take lots and lots. I was hoping one of the photos of the walrus diving into the water would work - and I think this is the best of them.

Interested in a trip to Svalbard? I have two options, one next year, one the year after! Check out the voyages I'm doing with Kevin Raber and with Aurora Expeditions here.

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