Thursday, June 23, 2011

Super Sized

Our first anchorage in Prince William Sound was Garden Cove, which derived it's name from garden Island, where Capt. Portlock in 1789 planted an experimental garden. This anchorage was surrounded by tall jagged snow covered peaks. With the sun shinning we were able to enjoy the outdoors and actually heard a mamma sea otter "sing" (for lack of better description) to her pup on her belly.

Olsen Bay was our next stop and one of my favorites. Olsen bay has four hanging valleys left by the Pleistocene Age glaciers, amazingly beautiful. A day did not go by that we didn't see brown bears. A sow with 3 cubs one of which was cream colored made were there every morning and evening, while other bears made periodic visits, it wasn't unusual to see 8 bears at once.

Sheep Bay was on the way to Cordova and another steeply surrounded bay with the mountains reaching down into the water. Sheep Bay was misnamed in 1897 because a USN commander believed he saw sheep instead of Mountain goats in the bay's highlands. With persistence and binos, Jim spotted several Mountain goats, once you knew what to look for they were easy to find and follow on their journey across the cracks in the mountain side.

On to Cordova the major fishing port in P.W.S. which can only be reached by water or air. This friendly town of about 2,500 has what every realtor is selling, location, location, location. Sitting at the base of majestically rising mountains it is breathtaking. Showers could be had for $5.00 for 10 minutes and laundry $5.00 a load- this seemed like a lot until I remembered we paid $45.00 US dollars for one load of laundry that was returned to me wet in French Polynesia.

Leaving Cordova turned out to be one of the most spectacular evenings ever. The skies were crystal clear not a cloud in sight! You could see mountain peaks all around the Sound and from at least 75 miles away you could see glaciers. The landscape just seemed to be punched out from the background. We continued on to Olsen Bay for a couple of nights and then we headed to Columbia Glacier.

From Columbia glacier we anchored in Passage Cove on Naked Island for a couple of days. Situated in the middle of P.W.S. Naked Island's wilderness offers 3 cell towers, go figure!

Having begun our trek in P.W.S. on the east, going north and now heading south and west our next anchorage is at present Barnes Cove on Knight Island. Early on this voyage the same adjectives kept coming up, spectacular, amazing, impressive, majestic, most beautiful, it just can't get any better? but somehow it does!!!

Barnes Cove is a pretty little cove surrounded by peaks, waterfalls and extensive tidal flats. Scanning the snow on the peaks with my binos was a long shot but just maybe?.and sure enough I saw a black bear trekking across the snow filed, what a thrill!!!!!

I wish I had the elegance of speech to really describe the beauty this land has to offer. What best describes Prince William Sound is everything here is "Super Sized".

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