Expedition Team

Our team is the key to your incredible adventure


Explore the Russian Arctic in the company of top experts. Benefit from their expertise—marine and terrestrial biology, botany, geology, and more—and benefit from their passion to share the wonder of this incredible region. Enjoy their company; you’ll find our Arctic tour guides highly engaging and fun to share a drink or dinner with, as well as a hike.


Meet the expedition team for this departure

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  • Brent Stephenson

    Expedition Leader

    Brent Stephenson was born in New Zealand and has been a birder since childhood, and in 2005 completed his Ph.D., studying the breeding biology of Australasian gannets in New Zealand.  In 2003, along with Sav Saville, co-owner of their bird-guiding business, he rediscovered the “extinct” New Zealand storm-petrel, a bird known previously from only three museum specimens collected during the 1800s.  With support from National Geographic, he led a team conducting further research on this enigmatic seabird.

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  • Erika Larsen

    National Geographic Photographer

    For more than a decade, Erika Larsen has used photography to learn intimately about and document cultures that maintain strong connections with nature. She has been working with National Geographic magazine since 2011, and is currently a National Geographic Society Fellow and Explorer. Among her assignments, she followed Sami reindeer herders in the Scandinavian arctic and explored the significance of the horse in Native American culture. Erika was part of the multi-photographer team that produced the magazine’s 2016 single topic Yellowstone Issue, and she contributed to Yellowstone: A Journey Through America’s Wild Heart, published by National Geographic Books. She is also one of the featured photographers in Women of Vision: National Geographic Photographers on Assignment, which profiles the lives and work of important photojournalists and goes behind the lens of their individual assignments.

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  • Ralph Lee Hopkins

    Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

    Santa Fe-based photographer Ralph Lee Hopkins is founder and director of the Expedition Photography program for the Lindblad-National Geographic alliance. For more than 20 years he has lead expeditions from the Arctic to Antarctica and points in between.

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