Cutting across the Zambezi River, bridging the countries of Zambia and Zimbabwe, Victoria Falls is the largest waterfall in the world. This awesome force of nature divides two natural worlds – the tranquil meandering river above the cascade and the raging abyss of the gorge below. The upper river is idyllic, running shallow through sandstone hills and meandering around islands and reed-beds where elephants, lions, hippos, crocodiles, buffalo, zebra, antelope and otters thrive. In a single vertical drop, the river plummets twice the height of Niagara Falls into the wild waters and heavy spray of the narrow gorge, where 35 different raptor species rear their young, feasting on a glut of fish. Between the two worlds, the treacherous cliffs and rocky outcrops are covered in thick, mossy rainforest, fed by the constant mists, and home to baboons, monkeys, mongoose and parrots. It is a place of epic proportions, with an epic story to tell.
NATURE joins adventurer and bear biologist Chris Morgan on a year-long motorcycle odyssey deep into Alaska’s bear country to explore the amazing resiliency and adaptability of these majestic animals as they struggle to make a living in five dramatically diverse Alaskan ecosystems: coastal, urban, mountain, tundra and pack ice. Three-part miniseries.
In hour three (“Arctic Wanderers”): Chris Morgan travels to the far north of Alaska, the tiny North Slope town of Kaktovik. It’s early November and winter is coming on. But each year, the polar bears struggle for extended periods on dwindling fat reserves, waiting for the opportunity to hunt on sea ice that takes longer to freeze. In early spring, Morgan joins local hunters in Barrow, the northernmost city in Alaska, as they go out on their own hunts, facing some of the same challenges as the bears. In late spring, Morgan travels to the North Slope of the Brooks Range, where countless thousands of caribou cover the ground for miles. The grizzlies are waiting for them, as they have for thousands of years. Part three of three.