Jul 01, 2018 - National Geographic Sea Bird
We awoke to a partly sunny day among the first “civilization” we had seen since we left Sitka three days ago. The small town of Haines sits at the scenic mouth of the Chilkat River and the head of Lynn Canal, surrounded by many snow-capped 4500-foot peaks. The home of the Klukwan clan of the Tlingit people for hundreds of years, it is now the most northern reach of the Inside Passage and the Alaskan Marine Highway System. From here, native people accessed interior trade routes and today’s travelers exit the state ferries with their campers and RVs intent on exploring Alaska independently.
We all did our own share of independent travel today, choosing among a list of excursions that would make any adventure seeker happy. Some, including this author, chose to visit the ancestral home and cultural center of the Klukwan people, followed up by a Chilkat River float and lunch. Others opted for a fly-fishing tour with a local guide, while the active-minded hopped on a bike to explore town and its outer reaches. Many guests took advantage of an aerial perspective of the surrounding peaks, valleys, and glaciers and hopped on an afternoon flightseeing trip and came back wide-eyed and awed by the vast beauty of Southeast Alaska.
A crab and barbecue brisket dinner was followed by a rousing round of Alaskan Wildlife Jeopardy. Guests had a chance to compete with their fellow travelers and test their knowledge, or learn from others, about animals that make Alaska their home.
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