ALASKA: LEG 4 – SHEEP BAY TO CORDOVA | NW Explorations
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ALASKA: LEG 4 – SHEEP BAY TO CORDOVA

July 13th, 2016

Alas, another cruise has come to an end, and we are tied up at the dock we left from in Cordova.  The talk is of rental cars and airplane schedules, decidedly non-nautical matters.  E-mail addresses and invitations to visit have been exchanged, but we know that this time together has been special.  All the more so because we spent the past two days under gloriously sunny skies.Yesterday we enjoyed a lay day in Sheep Bay.  The crew of Hele Mai reported a mom black bear and three cubs on the beach while they were still in their pajamas.  Patos’ crew kayaked in to the lagoon at the head of the bay before breakfast.  It was an enjoyable day all around.  Our final dinner was a pot luck hosted aboard Deception and Ajax.  Rowan played his fiddle as we enjoyed the sun and the wine on the flying bridges.  It’s handy to have him around!Departing Sheep Bay this morning we spied four mountain goats in the alpine meadows above us, and plenty of sea otters in the water around us.  The pups are getting big, almost as big as their moms, but they still like to ride aboard.  Three Dall’s porpoise zipped over to ride Deception’s bow.  It was almost painfully beautiful in the sun and calm water.  And now the trip is over.  I’m so glad I was here!You cannot quantify the enjoyment of a cruise like this, but you can list the species seen.  For the trip, 42 birds and 10 mammals. Not bad.

Here is the list:

Birds

  • Pacific Loon
  • Pelagic Cormorant
  • Great Blue Heron
  • Mallard
  • Harlequin Duck
  • Surf Scoter
  • Barrow’s Goldeneye
  • Bufflehead
  • Common Merganser
  • Red-Breasted Merganser
  • Bald Eagle
  • Black Oystercatcher
  • Spotted Sandpiper
  • Red-Necked Phalarope
  • Pomarine Jaeger
  • Parasitic Jaeger
  • Black-Legged Kittiwake
  • Bonaparte’s Gull
  • Mew Gull
  • Glaucous-Winged Gull
  • Arctic Tern
  • Pigeon Guillemot
  • Marbled Murrelet
  • Kittlitz’s Murrelet
  • Horned Puffin
  • Belted Kingfisher
  • Steller’s Jay
  • American Crow
  • Common Raven
  • Violet-Green Swallow
  • Barn Swallow
  • Boreal Chickadee
  • Pacific Wren
  • Varied Thrush
  • American Robin
  • Hermit Thrush
  • Orange-Crowned Warbler
  • Savanah Sparrow
  • Fox Sparrow
  • Song Sparrow
  • Dark-Eyed Junco
  • Pine Siskin

Mammals

  • Harbor Porpoise
  • Dall’s Porpoise
  • Humpbacked Whale
  • Steller’s Sea Lion
  • Harbor Seal
  • Sea Otter
  • Black-Tailed Deer
  • Mountain Goat
  • Black Bear
  • Brown Bear

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