2012 Alaska Roadtrip travel blog

Tuesday, August 7

Harry got us up about 7:30 am, so we dressed and left camp with our day packs. We took the small boat across the bay before the tide went out. We had breakfast on the beach--muffins, hot drinks, and oatmeal. I got some bug repellent from Brigid, as the bugs were making me pretty miserable, especially with the bites I got the night before.

We walked around a point on the beach then climbed a 10-15 foot bank, and found a place to watch the beach without being seen. We saw several bears on the beach. As the tide went out, some salmon were trapped in small pools. One young male spent 10-20 minutes bathing and playing in the water below us. He splashed and kicked his feet and played with a stick.

We saw a few sows with cubs. One sow with 2 cubs walked below us on the beach. A male out in the water began to chase a salmon and scared the cubs, who bolted for the bank. They scrambled up the bank not far from us and on up a tree lickity-split, followed closely by their mother (who came up the bank, but not up the tree), as we hurriedly got out of the way. They were closer than was comfortable, for us or for the mama bear. Brigid took control of the situation, we got back a ways, and mama called her cubs down from the tree. One cub didn't want to come down, but mama ordered him down in no uncertain terms, and they left along the top of the bank away from us.

One young male chased salmon up and down a pool, back and forth, with a great deal of splashing. He eventually caught one, but I'm sure he burned more calories than he consumed. He needs to work on his fishing technique.

That morning we had 3-4 encounters that were scary, but Brigid and Harry said we weren't in any real danger. Maybe not, but if not, it was because they were there. Kayla (age 14) was the closest one to a bear about 3 times, and she really freaked out, but she followed directions and didn't yell or run. She did cry some after an encounter.

Finally we left that spot--a little too much bear activity. Sometimes they approached from one direction along the bank and sometimes from the other. But it was a good place to watch the bears on the beach and in the water.

We walked down the beach to another creek and up the creek and saw more salmon. We were hiking over stones on the beaches and creek banks, we crossed some small streams, walked through tall grass, bushes, etc. Some parts were steep, up or down.

When we got back to camp we sat around and talked for a while, then had another freeze-dried dinner--just add hot water to the pouch, let it set for about 15 minutes, and eat out of the pouch--easy prep and easy clean-up. We got to bed about 10:30 or 11.

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