Natural Habitat Adventures

Drew Hamilton

Born in Alaska and raised in the wilds of Iowa, Drew spent countless hours outdoors as a youth building forts along the Iowa River and delivering an incalculable number of newspapers. The travel bug bit him hard as a teenager when his family lived on the Black Sea coast of Bulgaria, their base for exploring Turkey, Greece, Ukraine and western Russia. After stints living on the east and west coasts of the U.S., Drew made his way back home to Alaska in the late 1990s. His first job there sent him to a bear-viewing camp where he found his calling: bears. Since then, Drew has spent more than 20 years observing and photographing brown bears, black bears and polar bears across Alaska and Canada, including six seasons running the bear photo-identification program in the famed McNeil River State Game Sanctuary, home to the largest congregation of brown bears on Earth. Even when he isn't guiding, much of Drew's time is spent pursuing and photographing Alaska’s varied megafauna. While best known for his work with bears, Drew’s nature passions are varied, ranging from the northern lights to musk oxen to monarch butterflies. 

Drew got his start in photography as a youngster in the darkroom of his parents’ small-town newspaper. From there, it was an easy expansion into wildlife photography as he combined two growing interests, and conservation emerged as a driving motivation. Stemming from his belief that imagery can be a powerful tool for change, Drew has made conservation an important theme in his photography. In 2019, the Alaska Conservation Foundation awarded Drew the Daniel Housberg Wilderness Image Award for his use of photography in the fight against the proposed Pebble Mine. As president of the nonprofit organization Friends of McNeil River, Drew works with a broad coalition of Alaska. Natives, conservation organizations, photographers and businesses to bring permanent protections to the Bristol Bay region of Alaska.

Drew enjoys exploring many different photographic styles and editing techniques to push the boundaries of what is possible in wildlife storytelling. Always a student, Drew looks to constantly adapt and experiment with new approaches to nature photography. View Drew's latest photography portfolio additions on Instagram at @drewhh.

Winters are generally a slow time in the bear-viewing business (think hibernation), so Drew fills his downtime cross-country skiing, editing photos, making homemade pretzels, and staying up all night to photograph the northern lights...until it's time to get back into the field with his camera once again.

Enjoy this selection of Drew's nature photography:

What’s in Drew's Camera Bag:

Camera Bag
Gura Gear Kiboko 22L

Camera Equipment
Olympus EM1X body
Olympus EM1 mk 2 body
M. Zuiko 7-14 mm f/2.8
M. Zuiko 40-150 mm f/2.8
M. Zuiko 60 mm f/2.8
M. Zuiko 300 mm f/4
Voigtlander 25mm f/.95
Sony A7s 2 body
Rokinon 24mm
T1.5 Cine Rokinon 14mm f/2.8
iPhone 11 Pro

Post-Processing Software Expertise
Adobe Photoshop
Adobe Lightroom
NIK Collection
Topaz

Upcoming Adventures with Drew:

Praise from Nat Hab Travelers:

D. Diaz
"Drew was HILARIOUS! He looked like he had just emerged from the wilds of Alaska—burly beard, rugged flannels, mountain-man hiking supplies, the whole bit—and what a BIG, fun-loving personality! He was engaging and immediately put our group at ease. His easy humor mixed with a thorough knowledge of the area was the perfect combination. Safety was also paramount with Drew. His leadership techniques while among the bears provided our group with security, without negatively impacting our experience. My husband and I felt confident that we would enjoy an amazing adventure away from the crowds, and we did. Thank you, Drew!"

S. Meents
"Drew was a charismatic walking encyclopedia, extremely knowledgeable about any question we asked. He was friendly, personable and thoughtful. I can't imagine taking the polar bear trip with anyone else. You're very fortunate to have him working for your company."

K. Kowalski
"Words can not express how wonderful Drew was. He made this trip better then I ever imagined. He was amazing from the time we met until the time we said goodbye. Drew was absolutely amazing."

D. Cameron-Brown

"Drew's enthusiasm and love of sharing information about bears was unbelievable. He spent time with everyone who needed help with photography and made shots of the aurora possible for many of us. For us, he added an extra dimension to the trip and made us want to do further bear trips."

S. Shein
"My husband and I have traveled the world and have had many tour guides. We are sure you already know you have a treasure in Drew. He is the best of the best. The trip and your company are fabulous, as is Drew!"

P. Fieldus
"Drew's enthusiasm says it all! His knowledge of kinds of bears and bear behavior added richness to our trip! Even though I rarely have energy to get through a busy day anymore, his excitement and willingness to keep us all engaged in the adventure made this trip so much more special for me! He’s a hoot! As a first time traveler with Nat Hab, Drew’s style and his genuine energy will make me look at other tours with this company under his leadership. In fact, I’ve already been talking up this tour with friends!"

K. Doyle
"Drew is a superb Expedition Leader! He is highly intelligent, well-educated and definitely a bear expert. Plus he's a wildlife photographer—it doesn't get better than that. Drew has a terrific sense of humor as well. He was a complete professional, always gracious and always on top of the day's activities. We could not have asked for a better person as a guide and we'd take another trip with Drew anytime."

E. Chang

"Drew was amazing. We've traveled a bunch and he's the best guide we've ever had. Anything we asked him for, he instantly got for us. If we are fortunate enough to go on another Nat Hab bear trip, we will certainly request that we get assigned to Drew!"

J. Mayer
"With both his obvious knowledge and his passion for bears, he made this a very fun and educational experience. I have been on several other tours in the past and Drew was definitely one of the best guides I have ever worked with.

A. Miller
"Drew was incredible. He went to great lengths to ensure every one of us had the best possible experience. His love for the bears, nature and his job were evident. His extensive knowledge on polar bears and the tundra was impressive. His personality invited everyone to participate and have a good time. I hope you realize the treasure you have with him. Thank you Nat Hab and Drew for an incredible experience."

S. Lobliner
"Drew is one of the best Expedition Leaders we have ever had on any trip. This was a true photography trip. His knowledge of cameras, settings and anything to do with photography is amazing. He let me borrow one of his lenses so that I could experiment. He made sure that everyone on the trip was able to get the best pictures possible. His enthusiasm for the bears was definitely contagious and we loved hearing his stories about bears. He also shared his love of the Churchill area and the people he knows there."

K. Deasy
"Drew was truly outstanding. He is incredible at working with people and passionate about everything related to the trip and beyond. His enthusiasm is infectious. If a problem arises, Drew solves it. By the conclusion of our journey, it felt as though Drew was family, and I believe everyone in our group would agree with that sentiment. Probably the greatest compliment I could pay Drew would be to note that he made it far more likely that I would travel again with Nat Hab, and I would do everything I could to get Drew as Expedition Leader again. We were very fortunate to have him for this particular trip."
Guides & Staff

Get Weekly Updates

Our weekly eNewsletter highlights new adventures, exclusive offers, webinars, nature news, travel ideas, photography tips and more.
Privacy Policy
We're Proud of the Reputation We’ve Earned
Outside
Voted "World's Best Travel
Company"
by Outside Magazine
Outside
Natural Habitat Adventures Ranked
“Best Outfitter”
NatGeo
Voted Best Winter Trip: Natural Habitat Adventures' Monarch Butterfly Migration, Mexico
VIEW MORE AWARDS

Request Your 2022 Catalog

Discover the World's Best

Nature Travel Experiences

Nathab 2022 Catalog

Together, Natural Habitat Adventures and World Wildlife Fund have teamed up to arrange nearly a hundred nature travel experiences around the planet, while helping to protect the spectacular places we visit and their wild inhabitants.

Natural Habitat Adventures Logo WWF Logo
Request Your 2023/2024 Catalog
Continued - Page 2 of 2
To help us customize your catalog request, please tell us more about your travel needs:
Thank you for requesting a catalog
We’ve received your request. If you have any questions about our trips, please feel free to contact an Adventure Specialist today by calling 800-543-8917.

Get Weekly Updatess

Discover the World's Best

Nature Travel Experiences

Our weekly eNewsletter highlights new adventures, exclusive offers, webinars, nature news, travel ideas, photography tips and more. Sign up today!

Natural Habitat Adventures Logo WWF Logo
Send Me Travel Emails
Privacy Policy
Thank you for joining our email list!

Look for a special welcome message in your inbox, arriving shortly! Be sure to add naturalhabitat@nathab.com to your email contacts so you don’t miss out on future emails.

Send Us a Message

Send Us a Message

Have a question or comment? Use the form to the right to get in touch with us.

Natural Habitat Adventures Logo WWF Logo
Send Us a Message
Thank you for your message

We’ll be in touch soon with a response.

Refer a Friend

Refer a Friend
Earn rewards for referring your friends! We'd like to thank our loyal travelers for spreading the word. Share your friend's address so we can send a catalog, and if your friend takes a trip as a first-time Nat Hab traveler, you'll receive a $250 Nat Hab gift card you can use toward a future trip or the purchase of Nat Hab gear. To refer a friend, just complete the form below or call us at 800-543-8917. It's that easy! See rules and fine print here.
Natural Habitat Adventures Logo WWF Logo
Refer a Friend

Earn rewards for referring your friends! We'd like to thank our loyal travelers for spreading the word. Share your friend's address so we can send a catalog, and if your friend takes a trip as a first-time Nat Hab traveler, you'll receive a $250 Nat Hab gift card you can use toward a future trip or the purchase of Nat Hab gear. To refer a friend, just complete the form below or call us at 800-543-8917. It's that easy! See rules and fine print here.

Thank you for the referral!

We've received your friend's information.

View Our 2023 Digital Catalog

View Our 2023/2024

Digital Catalog

Help us save paper! We offer a digital version of The World's Greatest Nature Journeys. If you'd prefer a mailed copy, please provide your contact details here. To view our digital catalog, please enter your info in the form to the right.
Natural Habitat Adventures Logo WWF Logo
View Digital Catalog
Happy browsing!

Thanks for requesting access to our digital catalog. Click here to view it now. You’ll also receive it by email momentarily.

Our Trips

Polar Bear Tours

Polar Bear Tours

African Safaris

African Safaris

U.S. National Parks Tours

U.S. National Parks Tours

Alaska Adventures

Alaska Adventures

Canada & the North

Canada & the North

Galapagos Tours

Galapagos Tours

Mexico & Central America Tours

Mexico & Central America Tours

South America Adventures

South America Adventures

Europe Adventures

Europe Adventures

Asia & Pacific Adventures

Asia & Pacific Adventures

Antarctica & Arctic Journeys

Antarctica & Arctic Journeys

Adventure Cruises

Adventure Cruises

Photography Adventures

Photography Adventures

Family Adventures

Family Adventures

New Adventures

New Adventures

Questions? Call 800-543-8917

Contact Us

Have a question or comment?
Click any of the buttons below to get in touch with us.

Hours
Mountain Time

  • 8 am to 5 pm, Monday - Friday
  • 8 am to 3 pm on Saturday
  • Closed on Sunday
Call 800-543-8917
Questions? Click to Chat
Questions? Click to Chat
/guides-and-staff/guide-bios/drew-hamilton/