Last evening, after anchoring, Navigator and Thea both set off in their dinghies to explore the shores of Klag Bay. Salmon were jumping all around the boats but our attention was drawn to a big splash off Arctic Star! It wasn’t a sea lion or a whale, it was Holden, from Arctic Star jumping in for a swim! Apparently, Holden has been practicing swimming in cold water to acclimate himself. Ah, to be seventeen again!
We woke to another windless day and glassy calm conditions, picked our anchors and carefully made out way out of Klag Bay. No sooner had we reached the outermost basin when Mason spotted our first humpback of the day calmly swimming along the surface.
We cruised through Imperial Passage to the outside where we were met with a gentle swell from the Pacific and another day of continued comfortable conditions for our journey to Elfin Cove. As we entered Lisianski Strait, we were greeted by scattered rafts of a dozen or so otters each, waking up from their nights rest in the kelp beds. The first of many humpback whales was spotted, followed by blows from at least three different directions. One whale did a lazy breach off Deception’s port bow. We also sighted our first brown bear on the beach foraging for its breakfast of barnacles, mussels, gunnels and whatever else it could find to eat.
Throughout the day, each boat was sharing sightings of more brown bears, humpbacks and sea otters. The cliffs along the shoreline and the rocky islands were a dramatic, untamed sight! The black basalt rock jutted straight up out of the water forming vertical cave filled cliffs 3 or 4 stories high. The cliffs were topped with lush thick moss and low growing shrubbery with the occasional gnarled windswept conifer resembling Bonsai trees.
Shortly before reaching our destination we noticed some activity in the water off our port bow. It was a bald eagle swimming to shore using its wings like an Olympic athlete doing the butterfly! As it finally climbed ashore, it flapped the water from its wings and climbed out of the water. It became apparent that the swim wasn’t in vain, the eagle had a large salmon in his talons! Well rewarded for the cold swim.
As we turned into Elfin Cove, we were met with a quaint little village built largely on stilts around a very protected harbor. We squeezed in through the narrow opening and tied up. We will layover another day here to allow our guests to go out on fishing charters while others choose activities closer to shore. Meanwhile, everyone went their separate ways along the berry lined board walks, up to the friendly general store and the tiny post office.