There was an air of excitement and the anticipation of adventure aboard National Geographic Sea Bird last night as we departed Ketchikan, sailing into the network of waterways and islands that make up Southeast Alaska. Early this morning, those feelings were manifested when a gentle wakeup call came (wait a minute, that's an hour early!) with the words: "Whales have been sighted up ahead." We were in the Behm Canal, ready to explore Misty Fjords, the largest wilderness area in the Tongass National Forest and the largest of the national forests, in the biggest state in the Union.