After Skagway I ferried to Juneau.
If you have the chance take the AK Marine Hwy Ferry up to AK. It’s not fancy, there’s no on-board spa, but the berths are clean, the food is decent (you can also pack your own) and you’ll meet plenty of locals. Plus, it’s relatively reasonable, esp. if you are sans car. Some tent camp on the upper level and some sleeping bag it on the floor. That saves money as well.
On the way up to AK in February I’d made a new friend, Jackie, on the boat. An unwritten ancient code, knitters are programmed to seek each other out and knit. Sometimes, life-long friends are made this way.
Last spring’s winter trip north was cold and snowy. This time around temps were much warmer. Most times I could sit on deck, read, knit and enjoy the sights.
Eldred Rock Lighthouse not too far from Haines:
Point Retreat Lighthouse standing fast on the tip of Admiralty Island:
I made a couple stops before connecting with Jackie.
First up was the Shrine of St. Therese. A place of quiet, contemplative beauty I walked the grounds.
Strolling the gardens, my love affair with old-fashioned roses rekindled. Along the hiking trails up there, wild roses’ scent clings as you pass. Delish!
The come in white!
Next, farther up Juneau’s only road (which traces the coast), a beach I can’t find the name to. A pretty place to relax I pulled out a knitting project and had a picnic.
Also found and ate my first wild strawberries. Tasting nothing like farmed ones, the color so bright, I can still taste them.
The grand finale…
I watched salmon, following that primeval urge, swimming up Sheep Creek to spawn. I could have watched it for hours. Dusk was approaching and I figured hungry bears may approach as well so I didn’t stay too late.
This was a moving moment for me. I believe they were Pink salmon, AKA “Humpback” salmon but not positive. A life cycle was ending (and hopefully starting) there, many dead fish lined the creek edges. Eagles sat close by, feasting.
I took a video with my camera to capture the movement of the fish in the water. Unfortunately, I was moving as well! Please pardon the shaking. It’s 2 1/2 minutes long and shows more than any still photo I took.
A small black bear faltered onto the road on the way back to town. After loping along it clawed its way up a steep bank. I hotelled it that night and had a blast with Jackie the next day. More on that later.