While positioned behind an electric wire fence, tourists on a fly-in polar bear photo safari in the wilderness of the Canadian Arctic enjoyed a breathtaking sunrise encounter with a mother polar bear and its two curious 2-year-old cubs.

The polar bears were spotted at a distance approaching the camp from the sea ice, giving the tourists time to position themselves for a close encounter the guide was sure would happen.

"The reason for our optimism was because of the cubs," David Briggs, a senior expedition leader at Arctic Kingdom, told Caters News. "At this age they are super curious and boldly move forward to the focus of their attention."

As you'll see, the polar bears didn't know what to make of the humans:

"It couldn't have played out better, with the cubs coming up close during the sunrise, and the air being so cold and crisp that you could see their breath," Briggs told Caters. "This experience was magical as the cubs repeatedly came back towards the fence giving our guests a memory that will last a lifetime."

The Inuit guides and expedition leaders observe the behavior, physical condition and the demeanor of the polar bears as they approach, and as you can see, rifles are at the ready as a precaution.

“It’s such a unique experience people get giddy with excitement, laugh, hug each other and give high-fives," Briggs told Caters.

“It truly is an unbelievable experience and one that people feel privileged to witness. The reality of being so close to these majestic wild animals is incredible and one that I never tire of."

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