Peril Strait, Morris Reef, Pavlof Harbor

Aug 08, 2018 - National Geographic Sea Bird

Even before breakfast, it was already a “whale of a day.” An early wake-up call brought us out on the decks to view a large pod of killer whales in Peril Strait. Later, when we compared our photos with catalogues, we were able to identify them as AF pod—resident fish-eating whales often seen in Southeast Alaska.

Continuing toward Chatham Strait, we encountered a group of humpback whales bubblenet feeding near Morris Reef. These whales communicate and cooperate using bubbles, flippers, and sound to corral schooling fish into a tighter mass, making it easier to get large mouthfuls of prey. They feed in this manner for hours at a time.

Our afternoon destination was Pavlof Harbor on Chichagof Island. We drove by expedition landing crafts to the base of a waterfall near the mouth of Pavlof Creek to view salmon returning to spawn. Some guests spotted a mother brown bear and her two cubs emerging from the forest to fish for salmon.

Today, full of wildlife and new experiences, was a wonderful way to begin our voyage through Southeast Alaska.

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About the Author

Lee Moll


Lee grew up as a "Nature Girl" in the rural outskirts of New York City, where she developed and expressed her keen sense of biophilia.  She expanded her passion for the outdoors when she ventured to the western side of the country and she currently owns a home in Boise, Idaho.

About the Videographer

James Biscardi

Video Chronicler

James Biscardi is a young, ambitious professional photographer and videographer. He is always on the lookout for the next big adventure and “telling the story” through film.

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