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Panoramic view from Port Chatham ridge-top (click image for full-size)

Alaska 2017
  • Territory: Washington State, British Columbia, Alaska
  • Time: May - August, 4181 miles traveled
  • Vessel: "Teacup", Nordic Tug 37
  • Primary Activity: Hiking and kayaking, meeting the occasional bear.

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Prior years:  Alaska 2002 | Alaska 2003 | Alaska 2004 | Alaska 2005 | Alaska 2006
Alaska 2007 | Alaska 2008 | Alaska 2009 | Alaska 2010 | Alaska 2011
Alaska 2012 | Alaska 2013 | Alaska 2014 | Alaska 2015 | Alaska 2016

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Bainbridge Island

This is about the Bainbridge Island in Prince William Sound (PWS), not the same-name island near Seattle.

Bainbridge Island is satisfyingly wild and remote, such that when you meet a bear, chances are he'll behave as though he's never seen a human before, and that's likely to be true. The island has a number of nice hikes, ranging from easy to very difficult, and a lake that I've been exploring by kayak.

No-name Lake Kayak Drag

Update: Be sure to watch my video rendition of this article on YouTube at Alaska Salt/Fresh Water Kayak Expedition — Prince William Sound, Alaska.

The shores along the lake are so steep that exploring it, and the land beyond it, requires a boat. So over a period of years I've been scouting out the easiest kayak-drag route to get my kayak from salt water to the lake. This activity is much like other kayak drags I engage in, but it's longer (about 2/3 trail miles horizontally plus a climb of 500 feet) and harder on the boat and on me.

For background, here's a link to my earlier article about Bainbridge Island, including a nice overview graphic.

Here a slide show of this year's kayak drag and lake exploration — to navigate, click the arrows at the left and right, or use your keyboard's arrow keys:

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High Country Hike

There's another nice outing on this island, a high terrain hike that required scouting over a period of years to find an efficient trail. Again, this prior article shows some of the details.

Here's a multi-image panorama of the high country on Bainbridge Island (definitely click this image to explore it in full size — it's almost 7,000 pixels wide):

During this hike I encountered a black bear who seemed surprised to encounter a human and, once I made some noise, took off. I should add that, in my many bear encounters over 40 years, I've never had a hostile encounter and have never had to use the bear spray I always carry.

For a more complete and enveloping perspective on this island, be sure to see my Bainbridge Island photospheres.

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