Get Ready for Fat Bear Week, Cub Style!

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For the young and maturing bears of Brooks Falls, it's win and you're in! During this warm-up event for Fat Bear Week, you choose one chubby cub who will compete in the annual Fat Bear Week tournament with the big bears.
Voting for Fat Bear Junior takes place September 23rd - 24th at fatbearweek.org, click here to vote.
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Fat Bear Week Live Events 2021

Celebrate the success of Brooks River’s world-famous bears during Fat Bear Week. Your vote decides which bear will be crowned the fattest of the year. National Park Service rangers and explore.org’s resident naturalist Mike Fitz are hosting many live events to help inform your vote. Watch the bears every day on explore.org.

Fat Bear Junior

For these young and maturing bears, it is win and you’re in! During this warm-up event for Fat Bear Week, you choose the cub who will compete in the annual Fat Bear Week tournament. Join the bracket reveal with Mike Fitz from explore.org and Katmai National Park ranger Naomi Boak during a live play-by-play on Monday, September 20 at 7 p.m. Eastern / 4 p.m. Pacific. The Fat Bear Junior vote takes place September 23 – 24 on fatbearweek.org.

Fat Bear Week in the Classroom

We invite teachers to take bearcam into the classroom and consider the different ways in which bears find success in Katmai’s challenging environment. Ranger Lian Law from Katmai National Park and explore.org’s resident naturalist Mike Fitz will record a special broadcast to answer your students’ questions. Learn more about how your class can participate. Questions are due by September 28. The recorded broadcast premieres on October 4 at 2 p.m. Eastern / 11 a.m. Pacific on the Explore Live Nature Cams YouTube channel.

Fat Bear Week Live Chats

Find these events on the Brooks Live Chat channel. And, if you miss any of our live chats, you can find the replays on our Bears and Bison YouTube channel.

  • Fat Bear Week Bracket Reveal

September 27 at 7 p.m. Eastern / 4 p.m. Pacific

The road to Fat Bear Week greatness began months ago. After a summer-long effort, brown bears at Brooks River in Katmai National Park have reached peak fat. How did they do it and what challenges did they face along the way? Those are a couple of the questions that explore.org’s resident naturalist Mike Fitz and Katmai National Park rangers Naomi Boak and Lian Law will answer as they reveal the contenders and the bracket for the 2021 Fat Bear Week tournament.

  • Welcome to Fat Bear Week

September 29 at 7 p.m. Eastern / 4 p.m. Pacific

Winter comes quickly in Katmai and bears must get fat to survive it. Fat is the fuel that powers their ability to endure winter hibernation as well as the key to their reproductive success. Learn more about the importance of fat in the survival of the Fat Bear Week contestants with explore.org’s resident naturalist Mike Fitz and Katmai National Park rangers Naomi Boak and Lian Law.

  • A Very Fat Bear Play-by-Play

October 4 at 7 p.m. Eastern / 4 p.m. Pacific

A favorite of rangers and bearcam fans alike, play-by-plays are live events when rangers and other experts narrate the bear and salmon activity at Brooks River. It’s an opportunity to learn more about the individual bears on the cams and how they survive.

  • Fat Bear Tuesday

October 5 at 7 p.m. Eastern / 4 p.m. Pacific

In the tournament of champions that is Fat Bear Week, the merely pudgy bears have been winnowed away. The truly fattest are left standing. On Fat Bear Tuesday we conclude another titanic Fat Bear Week, and the two finalists are quintessential examples of success and the supreme adaptations that bears possess to survive. Explore the lives of the two final contestants with explore.org’s resident naturalist Mike Fitz and Katmai National Park rangers Naomi Boak and Lian Law.

Live Q&As

Chat in the comments with Mike Fitz, explore.org’s resident naturalist, and rangers from Katmai National Park during our weekly Q&As. Bring your questions about bears, salmon, and Katmai.

Brown Bear Superlatives

Choose your favorite bear among many categories including “most respected mom” and “best angler” in this post-Fat Bear Week celebration and fundraiser for the Katmai Conservancy. New superlatives are chosen each day from October 6 – 9 on the Brooks Falls YouTube page.

A Brown Bear Celebration

October 9 at 4 p.m. Eastern / 1 p.m. Pacific on the Brooks Live Chat channel.
After Fat Bear Week concludes, bears continue to fish at Brooks River and Katmai Conservancy continues its work in support of Katmai National Park. Join Katmai’s Conservancy’s Sara Wolman, explore.org’s Mike Fitz, and several special guests for this live event celebrating the 2021 brown bear season at Brooks River.

Got Questions?

Did you see something on the bearcams you’re curious about? Or, would you like to submit a question in advance for our live events? Ask it here. Rangers and expert staff may answer your question in a live chat, in the bearcam comments, or in a blog post.