Alaska Cruise Report: Freshwater Bay and Pavlof Harbor, Chichagof Island

From the National Geographic Sea Bird in Alaska August 21, 2010

Bubble bubble, swim circle circle, flash a pectoral fin, baritone yelp, whoop whoop, ooooh! Another batch of herring is gulped into the bellies of over a dozen humpback whales. A few rejuvenating breaths at the surface, arching backs, muscles tensed, ohhs and ahhs of our amazement for the massive beautiful flukes lifting, dripping and slipping underwater and bubble bubble starts all over again. Such was our morning and early afternoon today. Between these sightings and being the appreciative audience for over a dozen humpback whales, we explored the well beaten bear trails at Pavlof Harbor. Skeletons and wiggling salmon both were found at the waterfall. Proof of bears in the area surrounded us, from roe adorned piles of scat to deep muddy footprints skirting the stream and leading to the lake.

Our week has been filled with a dazzling and dizzying array of sightings; from the wolves at the whale carcass to the wolves of the sea, killer whales. From a black bear to brown bears to mountain goats perched high on cliffs and low amongst the barnacles. Humpback whales, breaching and feeding seemingly around every corner. Southeast Alaska laid all her wildlife wonders out on the table this week and we feasted in the abundance and diversity.

Enjoyed this Alaska cruise report? View the detailed itinerary…

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