Knudsen accessed Kamchatka via Moscow (see an update on the new Alaska/Kamchatka air service and what it means for hunters) and then flew south from Petropavlovsk by helicopter for an hour and fifteen minutes to the hard-walled hunting camp. Knudsen describes the camp's condition as fair, and the food, guides and other services as good. From the camp, hunters moved around by snow machine, spotting and stalking. We had heard from other sources that some parts of Kamchatka had difficult hunting this spring due to low snowpack and an early thaw, but when we questioned Knudsen about this, he told us that southern Kamchatka, where he hunted, had plenty of snow.
This was Knudsen's second trip to Kamchatka in two years. On the first trip, he took an eight-foot bear. This time he reports seeing 10 bears on one mountain at one time and taking a trophy more than nine feet long. "This is a super area with many bears because of the salmon river," he says. "I have seen a total of 140 bears on my two hunts." In the interest of full disclosure, Knudsen also reports having a videographer with him on this hunt, and he plans to produce a commercial video. We also contacted Ansten Ostbye of Ostbye's Hunting Tours to get a little more information on their operations on Kamchatka and elsewhere. Knudsen reports that Ostbye personally accompanies all clients on Kamchatka. According to Ostbye's website, they specialize in Russian bears, but also offer red deer, snow sheep, tur, chamois and Siberian roe deer and ibex in Russia. They also hunt Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, Iran and Turkey.
In his email reply to our inquiries, Ostbye says he is happy to work with English-speaking clients from North America. His Kamchatka program is already fully booked for fall,........(continued)