I know countless words have been written about Alaska, and probably millions of pictures have been taken, but I can honestly say that you simply cannot appreciate the drama of this state until you get your own feet on the ground there. On a recent trip to Sitka and Ketchikan, I managed to fit in a couple of days of hiking and photography.
At the north end of the Halibut Point road is the Starrigavan Campground and also a Wildlife Viewing Area where bears hang out when the Salmon are running upstream. My visit didn’t coincide with the Salmon run, so I didn’t see any bears, but then again, I wasn’t really all that prepared for a bear encounter – having flown into town with mostly business attire and no backcountry gear.
The day I did visit this area, I had the entire place to myself, and literally did not see another person along the entire loop. Some portions of the trail are elevated boardwalks like this, and then much of the trail is on the ground simply winding through the forest.
Another trail goes off in the other direction, taking a circular route down to the bay and back around to the parking area. Not an overly long hike, and certainly easy enough for nearly anyone to do, but stunning in it’s raw natural beauty mixed with some rough Alaskan trail work.
Since I knew I was in bear country, I tried to make a lot of noise as I hiked this trail alone, just to make sure neither the bears or I got an unpleasant surprise that afternoon. As thick as the forest is here, I honestly wouldn’t have been all that surprised to happen across Bigfoot here.