From Chatham Strait to Baranof Island

May 26, 2019 - National Geographic Quest


The temperate raiforest of Southeast Alaska is one of the wettest environments on earth, with some areas receiving as much as 400 inches of rain a year. Despite the abundant if not unceasing level precipitation, we awoke to a cloudless sky as National Geographic Quest cruised through the waters of Chatham Strait. We took advantage of these conditions and explored the coastlines and forests of Baranof Island for our first full day in Southeast Alaska. From the bow of the ship, we viewed humpback whales and Dall’s porpoises, two of this region’s most remarkable marine species, as they fed on the krill and schooling fish that flourish here in the summer. On land, we hiked through the trails of Lake Eva to view the Sitka spruce, western hemlock, and many understory plants of the temperate raiforest up close.

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About the Author

Alex Krowiak

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

A childhood surrounded by the woods and streams of Pennsylvania initially sparked Alex’s curiosity about nature. That curiosity eventually led him to pursue degrees in biology and environmental studies at Boston College. During his time there he conducted research on carnivorous plants in Iceland and kelp forests in South Africa. Together these diverse experiences provided him with the background and passion to become a teacher. 

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