What a wonderful day in the George and Inian Islands! We began our day with hikes on George Island and kayak rides in the surrounding waters; it was a beautiful morning for both activities. Hikers walked about a mile to reach the remainders of World War II-era defenses on George Island. There we learned from the Expedition Staff about the 1942 military presence on the island owing to its position facing the open Pacific Ocean. During our morning walks, we also inspected bear scat, witnessed orcas from scenic viewpoints, and learned together about Sitka spruce and hemlock trees that comprise much of the visible Southeast Alaska forest.

After the opportunities for hiking and kayaking, we gathered on the smooth rocks of George Island’s beach for a polar plunge! Our certified photo expert documented our gallant run into (and rapid retreat out of) the frigid waters of Southeast Alaska. Soon, we headed back to the ship for warm drinks and showers, before preparing for lunch and afternoon activities.

Guests spent the afternoon on Zodiac tours of the awe-inspiring Inian Islands, sharing encounters with Stellar sea lions, bald eagles, sea otters, cormorants, humpbacks, orcas, and more! Naturalists also presented throughout the day on the black and brown bears of the coast; this provided educational opportunities for guests not involved in adventurous operations. We finished the day with lively and informative recaps and a well-earned dinner. We then settled in for an evening presentation regarding the kelp forests we witnessed throughout our journey today!