Today we woke up to calm seas, zero clouds in the sky, and nearly no wind. The bridge team on National Geographic Sea Bird navigated us through a very scenic landscape in the morning light, and we tied up at the pier in Wrangell. After breakfast, we shuttled via Zodiac to a floating dock, just a very short distance away due to the extremely low tide. Our morning was spent hiking up Dewy Mountain and visiting the Wrangell Museum.
On the approach to the trailhead, we walked through a neighborhood of Wrangell where large houses with big windows overlooked the bay. Many ornamental plants were in full bloom, including rhododendrons and azaleas. Stepping into the forest on the Dewy Mountain trail, we were immediately transported to a new environment. Along the way, we observed many plant species of the coastal temperate rainforest. We enjoyed the hike up a well-established boardwalk to a beautiful viewpoint overlooking the town and the bay.
On the way down, one of our Global Explorers spotted a juvenile American robin on the branch of an ornamental mountain ash tree. We were able to hang out nearby and take pictures, as it didn’t seemed too bothered by our presence.
In the afternoon, some guests opted for a jetboat tour of the Stikine River, while others chose to stay on Wrangell Island to explore. On land, we first visited Chief Shakes’ house, where a local Tlingit woman enlightened us with stories of her culture. The traditional-style longhouse replicates the home of a powerful Native leader and features beautiful traditional artwork.
We then headed out towards a place called Petroglyph Beach, where we observed some petroglyphs and enjoyed the sound of the waves breaking and the beautiful scenery.
Finally, to end the day’s exploration, we went on another short hike through the forest to a bog. We observed many different plant species including the shore pine, Alaska’s only pine tree. Back onboard National Geographic Sea Bird, we had an excellent meal featuring locally sourced crab.
Throughout the entire day, we had spectacular weather. It was a great day exploring, and we’re all looking forward to another great day tomorrow.