World's Best Raptor Shoot

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Raptors: the hawks, owls, eagles and falcons. No other group of birds stirs the imagination, lifts our spirits, and symbolizes fierce and noble qualities more than these. This unparalleled photo shoot ranks at the top of the world's best opportunities to photograph birds of prey under controlled conditions. Against a backdrop of Colorado's 14,000-foot mountains, a wide variety of birds of prey are brought together from raptor facilities across the state to provide an exceptional chance to learn about and capture these marvelous wind-borne hunters with your camera.
"Beautiful location, variety of landscapes and birds to shoot, excellent help and information from our guide. A fun, interesting, well-managed tour."
- P. Guthrie

Master falconers, nature educators and raptor rehabilitation experts—who collectively represent more than 100 years of experience working with raptors—provide the birds for our four exciting days of photography.

We expect to photograph 15 or more species during our shooting sessions. They may include the peregrine and prairie falcons, gyrfalcon, American kestrel, Harris', ferruginous, red-tailed and Swainson's hawks, northern goshawk, golden and bald eagles, plus great horned, long-eared, screech, burrowing, barred and barn owls, and/or others. Many of the birds are flown free and/or perched in aesthetically pleasing locations with beautiful, natural backgrounds. No cages are used. All of the birds are in excellent physical condition and should provide for extraordinary "bird in the landscape" images, as well as numerous exciting fast-action flight shots. A few permanently injured and non-releasable individuals offer outstanding close-up portraiture opportunities.

Several beautiful habitats are used for the photography: rolling prairie grassland, forested foothills and rocky cliffs under brilliant Colorado skies. October brings the rich fall color of cottonwoods, plus the warm golds and browns of prairie grasses. Traditional falconry techniques can be photographed during our shoots and—prey species available—a golden eagle eating a (road-killed) rabbit, squirrel or prairie dog. We witness events that take place every day in the wild but we are there to watch, learn and generate many spectacular photographic images.

There is, literally, no other wildlife models photo opportunity in the world that compares to this one!

 

Check out Perry Conway's trip report from our 2016 Raptors photo tour

Tour Itinerary

Raptors photo shoot handlerDay 1 (Oct 20)

We arrive in Louisville, Colorado, via the SuperShuttle from Denver International Airport. Shuttle transportation is not included in the trip fee. We meet in the motel lobby for introductions and dinner. (D)

Days 2–5

These four days are filled with exciting photographic opportunities in several diverse wildland habitats. Along with the photography, we receive firsthand information about the life histories of each these superlative hawks, eagles and owls. (BLD)

Day 6 (Oct 25)

The SuperShuttle service returns us to Denver International Airport. (B)

 

Tour provides a comprehensive exposure to common raptors in as natural a setting as possible, with outstanding static and flight photography.
—E. Bellon

The sheer variety of raptors presented on this trip, and our level of access to them, was just amazing. Our leader was extremely knowledgeable about each bird, and helped to ensure both realistic and artistic settings.
—T. Strombeck

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Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris Enrollment Information

World's Best Raptor Shoot

Oct 20, 2018 - Oct 25, 2018


1. REGISTRATION
A deposit and completed and signed Registration Form are required to reserve a place for you on a Joseph Van Os Photo Safari.

2. PAYMENTS, CANCELLATIONS AND REFUNDS

All prices are quoted in US dollars and all payments must be paid in US dollars. For deposits only, we accept Visa, MasterCard or American Express. Final payment of the trip fee is due 120 days priors to departure and must be paid by check or bank transfer. Trip deposits are non-refundable and non-transferable.

We must receive written notice of your cancellation, at which time cancellation fees in the following amounts apply:

If Written Cancellation is Received:
90 days or prior:
89 to 61 days prior:
60 or fewer days:
Cancellation Fee:
100% of deposit
50% of entire trip fee
100% of entire trip fee


No partial refunds are made for unused portions or services of a trip for any reason whatsoever. Trips are sold as a package only. This policy also applies to tour extensions and independent travel arrangements. Cancellation fees are not transferable.

3. TRIP INSURANCE
Protect your travel investment and purchase a trip insurance policy that includes emergency evacuation coverage. A trip insurance brochure will be sent with your enrollment confirmation.

4. HEALTH CONSIDERATIONS
Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris are within the capabilities of average people in good health. Some of these trips require the capability of walking for several miles over uneven trails, stepping from a small boat to a wave-washed rocky beach, flying in small planes and helicopters, and occasionally hiking at high elevations—all while carrying an assortment of camera equipment. If you have concerns about your own capabilities and/or fitness as it relates to a trip, please inquire with our office before reserving a space. By forwarding a signed Registration Form and trip deposit, you certify that you do not knowingly have any physical or other conditions of disability that would create a risk for you or other trip participants and you agree to inform our office in writing if changes in your health occur any time prior to the tour. We reserve the right to request a doctor's statement of good health. The company's or trip leader's judgment shall provide the ultimate determination of an individual's ability to embark upon or to continue a trip. Once a trip has been confirmed, medical circumstances will not be considered as exceptions to our cancellation policy. We assume no responsibility for medical care or for special dietary requirements. “Meatless” meals are normally available at most locations. Due to the remote nature of many photo locations, and the growing diversity of today’s dietary trends, participants requiring special food items are encouraged to bring their own.

Tour members are asked to refrain from smoking with or near the group.

5. CONTACT SCHEDULE
Participants will receive three emails before the trip departs: 1. Initial Tour Information sheet confirms the deposit and provides pre-departure information. 2. Invoice/Practical Information provides clothing and photo gear recommendations, climate data, applicable health advisories and reading list. Visa information will also be included (if applicable). 3. Final Tour Information includes arrival instructions, itinerary revisions (if any), hotel addresses, trip telephone contact information and participant list. We provide the trip leader's telephone number(s) and/or e-mail address with final documents so you can inquire about special photographic questions you may have regarding your trip. We welcome your calls or e-mail messages to info@photosafaris.com.

6. PHOTO SAFARI COSTS
Information supplied upon enrollment describes the specific costs that are included in your trip fee. Generally these costs include lodging in double room occupancy, all meals (specified in the itinerary as BLD denoting breakfast, lunch or dinner), ground transportation during the trip in vans or small busses, air transportation as specified, meal and baggage tipping, and guide services provided by the trip leaders. Not included are airfare or other transportation from your home to the trip staging location, airport departure taxes, insurance, alcoholic beverages and bar expenses (plus bottled water and soft drink expenses on international tours outside of North America), tips and gratuities to local guides abroad, phone calls, passport or visa expenses, laundry or items of a personal nature. Gratuities to Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris trip leaders are optional and always appreciated. Rates are based on group tariffs; if the trip does not have sufficient registration, a small party supplement may be charged.

Single accommodations are available for a supplemental cost in many locations; see the pre-departure trip information or call our office for details. You will be charged the single supplement fee if you desire single accommodations or if you wish to have a roommate, but one is not available. In some remote locations, clients with single rooms are infrequently compelled to share a room due to circumstances beyond our control. In such cases, appropriate per diem refunds will be made reflecting the direct cost of the single room at the facility where clients are required to share. There is no additional single supplement fee on ship-based cruises, if you request a roommate and one is not available.

Cost increases may occur unexpectedly due to rising costs of airfares, ground transport, fuel surcharges, accommodations and currency fluctuations, among others. Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. may be compelled to amend prices, and we reserve the right to do so without prior notice. An increase in trip prices shall not be sufficient grounds for any refund of funds paid for the trip other than as determined by the terms of our cancellation policy.

7. LOGISTICS
Whenever possible, our trip participants are lodged in comfortable, modern hotels. We select among the best available accommodations, but refrain from extravagance. Some interesting photographic destinations are far removed from modern amenities, however, and where necessary we will be accommodated in rustic country inns, cabins or tented camps.

Meals are always a special part of our trips for the camaraderie they engender and the opportunity they provide to try new foods from different areas. Depending on the trip and specific locale, participants order restaurant meals from the full menu or, less frequently, table d'hôte. Some trips include picnic lunches in the field. Fruit juice for breakfast and coffee or tea are included with the meals. Soft drinks are included with meals on tours within North America. Participants are responsible for their own bar tab (including bottled water, soft drinks and alcoholic beverages on tours outside of North America) at restaurant lunches and dinners.

Our itineraries are intended as examples only. Participants should allow for flexibility due to changes in weather, natural history or cultural events, or other logistical arrangements deemed necessary by Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. or our leaders.

The second tour leader (and any subsequent additional leaders) listed for each trip on the website will be added as the group size warrants. If only one space remains on a trip, and logistics permit, we accept two persons traveling together, even if it exceeds the trip maximum.

8. RESPONSIBILITY
Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. and/or their Agents act only as agents for the passenger in regard to travel including, but not limited to, sightseeing, meals, lodging, transportation, and all other services whether by railroad, motorcar, motor coach, boat, ship or aircraft and they assume no liability for injury, damage, loss, accident, delay or irregularity which may be occasioned either by reason of defect in any vehicle or for any reason whatsoever, or through the acts or default of any company or person engaged in conveying the passenger or in carrying out the arrangements of the trip.

They can accept no responsibility for losses or additional expenses due to delay or changes in air or other services, sickness, weather, strike, war, volcanic eruption, terrorist acts, political unrest, quarantine or other causes. All such losses or expenses will have to be borne by the passenger, as trip fees provide for arrangements only for the times and locations stated. Baggage is at the owner's risk entirely.

The right is reserved to 1) substitute hotels of similar category for those indicated and to make any changes in the itinerary or transport where deemed necessary, or caused by changes in air schedules or equipment substitution; 2) cancel any trip prior to departure, in which case full refund of the paid trip funds will be given, but Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc. is not responsible for any other trip preparation expenses such as penalized or non-refundable air tickets, visa fees and medical related expenses; 3) substitute trip leader(s) for the leader(s) originally specified, in which case the substitution is not a basis for participant cancellation or refund other than provided by our normal cancellation policy; or 4) accept or retain any person as a member of any trip.

Trip prices are based on tariffs and exchange rates in effect at the time of publication and are subject to adjustment in the event of any change therein.

A Registration Form including the Release and Assumption of Risk section must be signed by each participant prior to the commencement of the trip. Participation by any trip member will be declined in the absence of the signed Registration Form including the Release and Assumption of Risk section, with no trip fee refund. No modification to the Registration Form including the Release and Assumption of Risk section will be accepted.

Should Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc., or anyone acting on their behalf be required to incur attorney's fees and costs to enforce this agreement, the enrolling trip participant(s) agree(s) to indemnify and hold them harmless for all such fees and costs. In the event a lawsuit is filed, the enrolling participant(s) agree(s) to do so solely in the County of Lewis in the State of Washington. Certain ship owners require the use of pre-printed ticket forms that limit the ship owner's and operator's liability. When such tickets are used, the passenger is bound by the terms of these tickets with respect to the passenger's legal relationship to the owners and operators of the ship, their agents (Joseph Van Os Photo Safaris, Inc.), and the ship's crew.

World's Best Raptor Shoot
Highlights
  • An unparalleled variety of eagles, hawks and owls fill four days of photography
  • Birds are displayed against a broad backdrop of Rocky Mountain landscapes
  • No other raptor shoot in the world offers this comprehensive collection of North American species in this variety of habitats
  • Only one convenient hotel for the entire trip
 
Oct 20 - Oct 25, 2018
Fee: $3,895 from Louisville, Colorado
Deposit: $500
Limit: 13
 
Tour Leaders
 
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