Last night we had a magnetic storm, that triggered a major aurora that danced for more than 5 hours. I watched better than half of it, starting at about 9:30. Often the aurora were in constant motion, flashing not only … Continue reading Is the Aurora Plural or are they Singular?
After a pandemic induced hiatus Alaska Day returned, in limited form, to Sitka. Alaska Day Commemorates the day that the Russian Flag was lowered, and the American Flag raised over Castle Hill (Noow Tlein in Tlingit) and the United States … Continue reading Alaska Day, 2021
Sunday, October 17, folks gathered on Noow Tlein (Castle Hill) to commemorate Reconciliation Day. Reconciliation Day is an attempt to recast Alaska Day. They gathered a day early because on Alaska Day, October 18, the hill was filled with military … Continue reading Reconciliation Day, 2021
Our rainforest is not where you would normally go to see fall colors. We are not New England or the Blue Ridge. Naturally most of the color we see is the alpine tundra, rust and yellow on the mountains. But … Continue reading Southeast Color
Autumn is Southeast is normally a miserable time. Statistically it rains 29 out of 31 days in October. It’s the beginning of stormy season. On October 1 we clocked 75 mile an hour winds at Sitka airport and about 2 … Continue reading Autumn in Southeast (2021)
This is the hardest post to write. I mentioned COVID fogged brain in my last post. I missed the final dinner, although they brought a delicious Beef Wellington to my stateroom. I also missed the final slide show and farewell … Continue reading The COVID Coda
After leaving Kake we headed home toward Sitka. We turned from Fredrick Sound into Chatham Strait and then into Peril Strait. Peril Strait was not named for any navigational hazard but because it is where many people died of paralytic … Continue reading A Coda With Whales.
Raven Radio’s first remote transmitter was in Kake, and it had been several years since I had visited the town. We listened to a talk by Native carver Michael Jackson and stories by 88-year-old elder Marvin Kadake, a proud Korean … Continue reading Tall Tales and a Taller Totem
In Petersburg the sun came out just before we sailed out of the harbor and that gives me the excuse for another post, showing the final few minutes in Petersburg and the sunny sail out. As we sailed into Fredrick … Continue reading Petersburg to Thomas Bay.
After an evening anchored up in Scow Bay we pulled into Petersburg. Petersburg was settled by Norwegian Fishermen and is located not far from the active tidewater LeConte Glacier that provided ice to pack fish for shipment south. We all … Continue reading Alaska’s Little Norway
In the afternoon we toured Wrangell, drove by Chief Shakes house and made stops at the museum and Petroglyph Beach. The petroglyphs along the beach are a mystery. No one knows why they are there, who put them there or … Continue reading Aye, There’s the Rub, and Running the Ditch
AnAn Wildlife observatory is on the mainland behind Wrangell Island near the Bradfield Canal. It is a 62 NM roundtrip from Wrangell. We took a tour on a local airboat from where we docked. While the main attraction is watching … Continue reading AnAn Wildlife Observatory, Bears!
After refueling with gas and Drambuie (at my request) we left Auke Bay under overcast skies, which brings out the blues of the ice and water and the greens of the misty clouds that seem almost alive as they snake … Continue reading An Unfinished Yosemite, Tracy Arm.
We encountered some rough weather sailing down the bay and Captain Eric was not sure we would be able to make a close pass by South Marble Island, which is a sea lion rookery and home to sea birds, including … Continue reading Sea Lions, Puffins and Bears, Why Not? South Marble Island in Glacier Bay.
We anchored behind Composite Island and tarried (some folks taking advantage of the tarrying by going out in kayaks) until Holland America’s Nieuw Amsterdam sailed past. Captain Eric didn’t want us to even see the big ship. While Nieuw Amsterdam … Continue reading Johns Hopkins Glacier, Glacier Bay
The healing pole sits upland from the Bartlett Cove Dock. It is a 20-foot yellow cedar pole depicting the conflicts between the park service and Huna tribe over their return to Glacier Bay. It combines traditional and modern forms and … Continue reading Ice Refugees, Bartlett Cove
The plan was to visit the fishing village of Pelican, but weather had a different idea. To reach Pelican you need to cross Cross Sound. (On some of the older English maps it is called Croff Sound, but Captain Cook … Continue reading No Pelican, Whales!
When we lived in Juneau, I managed KTOO radio. KTOO was on the same street as, and a block from, the State Capital. Across from the Capital was the Dimond Courthouse. It had a modern sculpture in its courtyard, light … Continue reading Looking for Nimbus (in Juneau)
Our cruise left on Sunday, so we flew over to Juneau on Saturday night. The plane was late as clouds and fog rolled into and out of Southeast’s mountains, bays and passes. Before GPS and Fog Busters I used to … Continue reading Alaska’s Brigadoon, Juneau
I’ve wanted to take one of these cruises for a decade. The timing never worked out. For the first several years we were overseas. Then other travel, and then the COVID epidemic intervened. Allen has been part of our lives … Continue reading 2021 Alaska Dream Cruise.
Raptors, eagles, birds of prey, being chased across a lawn by a kid. That’s how I first encountered the Alaska Raptor Canter. It was set in a back yard to care for injured eagles. In 1983 it moved to the … Continue reading Raptors!
Fourth of July is a civic holiday. Christmas and Thanksgiving are for families and church. Labor Day and Memorial Day have evolved away from civic celebration to family picnics that bracket summer. Independence Day is a time for communities to … Continue reading Celebrate in Community
My most intimate experience with a bear was not in Alaska, it was in Albania. A man in our neighborhood had a pet bear that was also his source of income. He and the bear walked around Tirana, he gathered … Continue reading Smart Bears
Here is the second tranche of pics from the 2021 Sitka Fourth of July Parade. One of the highlights of this half, which straddles both posts, is the new Yellow Cedar Bench honoring Alaska Civil Rights Leader Elizabeth Peratrovich. The … Continue reading The 4th is back (Tranche 2)