We didn’t need to depart until 10 am this morning so we were able to enjoy a slow morning at the dock in Warm Springs Bay. Some of the crews went up for a morning soak in the tubs at the top of the dock. These tubs have natural hot spring water piped into them from up the hill and have a great view of the bay and the waterfall. The boys and Sean from Bonum Vitae hiked back up to Baranof Lake to stretch their legs.
As we were preparing to leave, many of the fishing seiners and tenders pulled in to the dock. We enjoyed chatting with them and learned that the first opening of the season is tomorrow at 5am. They’ll be out early fishing for Chum salmon.
We cruised out through Chatham Strait and into Frederick Sound on glassy, calm waters today. We spotted multiple humpback whales feeding as we cruised. We also saw the first sea otters of the trip! These curious animals popped their heads up and watched as our flotilla cruised by. They floated on their backs near the kelp beds, diving to gather urchins and other marine invertebrates from the sea floor.
The second half of the day we wound our way through many small islands around Kuiu Island. Harbor seals, sea otters and Bald eagles were all feeding around the small islands and reefs. Many of the islands had small rocky cliffsides of limestone that had been weathered by the wind and waves into interesting formations and caves. Pigeon Guillemots nested on the cliffsides and dove in the water below.
We arrived in Big John Bay in the early afternoon passing over a shallow basin that was covered by the high tide. The tidal exchange today was 17 ft! After a few hours at anchor, the area looked completely different with extensive tidal flats all around. Some of the crews braved the rainy afternoon and went out setting crab pots and fishing. The Bonum Vitae and Discovery crews joined us on Deception for a sushi rolling party. We had fun time making and eating rolls with some of the fresh crab we had caught the day before.