Shortly after leaving Elvin Cove, we rounded the corner towards the Inian Islands just as the sun broke through and the clouds lifted enough to give us a peak of the massive Saint Elias mountains to the north. Another day of light winds, glassy calm water and sunshine promised great opportunities for nature sightings.
Navigator set off a little earlier than the rest of the fleet to do a bit more fishing. Their goal was a halibut which had eluded them on the previous day’s fishing charter. We wished them luck with plans to reconvene later in Icy Strait.
Within a half hour we slowed to view a sea lion haulout in Middle Passage. As we approached, we could hear the roaring and growling indicative of Steller Sea Lions. The largest males had the most coveted positions at the top of the black basalt rocks while the smaller males were relegated to the beaches below. We witnessed a few halfhearted bouts of neck fencing between adolescent males but otherwise they all seemed relaxed and content.
At the north end of Chichagof Island off Point Adolphus we spotted four humpbacks leisurely feeding. We slowed down to get a better view and watched them as they surfaced. Three of them were swimming together like synchronized swimmers which offered opportunities for some interesting photo opportunities.
As we approached Port Fredrick on our way to our final destination in Neka Bay, Navigator rejoined the fleet. Everyone found their favorite spot and dropped the hook. The sun broke through the clouds and offered options for everyone. Mindy and Jane went for a leisurely kayak paddle exploring the shoreline, Holden and Joe set off in their dingy to explore the area and set their crab pot. Harvey reported that they had caught their elusive halibut and, after Mai expertly filleted it, they offered generous portions to each of the boats. We all settled in for another flat calm evening satiated with delicious halibut dinners.
Another loud splash…just Holden and Joe swimming off the stern of Arctic Star.