2022 Alaska Flotilla – Leg 3, Day 6 – Security Cove to Red Bluff | NW Explorations


2022 Alaska Flotilla – Leg 3, Day 6 – Security Cove to Red Bluff

What an amazing day! It all started with Gary on Koa Lanai sharing that he had awoken at 2:50 a.m. to an unusual sound. When he went out to inspect, he saw a humpback whale repeatedly breaching just off the starboard side of the raft between their boat and the shore! As we were departing Security Cove, Koa reported seeing a deer swimming across the bay just in front of them along with three others on shore.

La Vida departed earlier this morning to get an early start on fishing. Almost immediately upon entering Chatham Strait boats  in the fleet reported whale sightings. We idled back to watch the show of humpbacks leisurely feeding solo or in pairs. While at idle, Matt on Deception decided to drop a line and do a bit of fishing. It didn’t take long before he was fighting a big fish!  It took him a while to land it but when he did it was a 48 inch, approximately 50-pound halibut. Captain Chris helped him get it on board and after much celebration, we measured it, took pictures and Matt began filleting it. La Vida reported catching a big ling cod and a halibut and Gary on Koa Lanai caught a ling cod. Meanwhile, a humpback decided to put on a show,  breaching and lobtailing: Jane wasn’t sure which way to point her camera!

The uncharacteristic flat calm waters in Chatham Strait made for excellent whale watching, comfortable fishing and beautiful scenic views of immense, majestic snowcapped mountains of Baranof Island. The entrance to Red Bluff on Baranof Island is a hidden narrow opening into a four-mile-long fjord. The flotilla collected together and lined up single file. We were immediately graced with the most spectacular scenery! Towering sheer walls covered in green foliage, waterfalls cascading down from unimaginable heights from unseen lakes high above us. Rocky snowcapped peaks surround us with numerous silver cascades pouring from their peaks. At the head of the bay, a creek filled with massive tree snags provided evidence of the power of that “creek” at other times of the year. Acres of partially submerged sedge grass foreshadowed possible bear sightings.

We didn’t have to wait long before a brown bear ambled out onto the delta. A few dinghies slowly approached but the bear‘s interest was elsewhere as it stopped grazing to periodically check the field. Suddenly, the bear stood on its hind legs, noticed another bear in the distance and immediately ran in the opposite direction into the forest.

Later in the afternoon, Jane and Chris went kayaking. We were paddling through the sedge grass just rounding a corner when Jane came upon a beautiful brown bear grazing the sedge grass just a few feet away. As each noticed the other, both decided that avoidance was the best choice. Jane had a moment to take a quick photo. The bear ran to the edge of the woods, reassessed the situation and returned to the waters edge to continue grazing.

What a fabulous day! La Vida shared their catch and we all settled in for a serene night of laughter and  shared stories.

P.S. Is Alaska on your bucket list? We can take you there! Email us to reserve your spot on our 2023 Mother Goose AK Flotilla. charters@nwexplorations.com 

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