The ruminations of an artist on art & quilts, beading, knitting, drawing, painting, printmaking, bookmaking are all my passions, I love to explore creating....

Tuesday, July 25, 2006


Today I arrived here in Alaska--after enduring delays in various airports, I was sure glad to get off the plane and take a deep breath of clean air. I never cease to be amazed when I return home to Alaska at how wonderfully clean the air is to breathe. I think living "down South" (an Alaskan term) we somehow are unaware how awful the air is we breathe everyday--until we got somewhere (like Alaska) where the air is still clean--then we notice the clean air. But living with dirty air--after a while, we just accept it--like we do the noise of the city---until we come somewhere with really clean air.

My sister and I went on a 3 day kayak trip into a wilderness area of Glacier Bay (in Southeast Alaska)--the Beardslee Islands. This is a no trace camping wilderness area--hence no motor boats allowed, and we left no trace of being there --or as little as possible. The area is full of wildlife--we saw no people for 3 days! just wild animals.

The first day we saw: eagles, ravens, a land otter & a raven fighting over some food, loons, seals, sea otters with babies, and numerous seabirds...

The second day we saw: Black Bear Momma with 2 cubs, humpback whale, porpoise, sea lion, and also (again) sea otters, seals, eagles, ravens, and mosquitoes!

The third day I saw a coyote---he came up behind me while I was making coffee on the beach---he was about 3 feet away, and had a very sassy demeanor. Later, back in the small town where my sister lives--on the trail to her cabin we saw black bears several times--including a Momma Bear & 2 cubs.

I am posting some photos from our kayak trip and one of the trail to her photos really do not do the wilderness of this area justice---in the woods the moss is about 3 feet thick and when you walk in it you sink into the moss up to beyond your ankles. Southeast Alaska is a RAIN FOREST---and so very lush and green. Everywhere we went on the beaches we found the small delicious wild strawberries--so here is a photo of one. The bears were eating the berries also--we could see from the bear sign they left. The area is full of wildflowers--from orange and yellow paintbrush to purple lupine, white and pink yarrow--and mushrooms are everywhere in the mossy woods.

I returned to "civilization" (and a hot shower!) very sore form all the kayaking, hiking, and moving of the gear--but it was sure worth soul is always uplifted and my faith restored by camping in the wilderness for just a few days. I give praise and thanks to John Muir for encouraging us to create this wonderful National Park; and pray it lasts for many generations to come.

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