Bashke Islands, Petersburg, Alaska

May 14, 2018 - National Geographic Sea Bird


Waking up to humpbacks is one thing. Waking up to lunge-feeding humpbacks under soft morning light while flocks of red-necked phalaropes darted back and forth in the background and gangs of gulls circled overhead, is quite another. The circling gulls revealed the position of the next explosion of wildlife: gaping jaw, spray, baleen, and scattering bait fish. For over two hours we followed the birds and marveled at the whales. By the time we pulled away, we still had a full day ahead of us.

From our morning in the Bashke Islands, we pushed northeast through the Wrangell Narrows into the vibrant fishing community of Petersburg. Lined with docks, fishing vessels, and Norwegian heritage, this small community was our hub for a host of activities. From our first introduction to a muskeg environment (known as a bog in some parts of the world), to bike rides through town, to flights over the nearby LeConte Glacier, to organized “dock” walks and an opportunity to get a feel for daily life in this working town.

As we pulled away from Petersburg, a familiar sight on this trip arched overhead: our third full rainbow of the voyage. It ushered us to our wilderness adventures tomorrow in Endicott Arm and the glaciated fjord environment of southeast Alaska.

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About the Author

Eric Guth

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Eric began work with Lindblad Expeditions-National Geographic in 2006 as a means to see the world, work with great photographers and engage his environmental studies degree beyond the classroom. His initial years with the company were spent working the waters of Southeast Alaska and Baja California. His move to the National Geographic Explorer in 2008 helped earn him the experience and knowledge needed to establish himself as a trusted boat handler, naturalist and respected photographer in nearly all the environments Lindblad-National Geographic travels.

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