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May 17 664

My Alaskan Adventure

My introduction to the Inside Passage was by air rather than by water (roads are scarce in this neck of the woods). My Alaskan Airlines flight bunny-hopped its way north from Seattle providing excellent views of the fantastic mountains of British Columbia and Alaska. This was shaping up to be a grand adventure :-)

I used the small frontier town of Wrangell, on Wrangell Island as my base to explore the region. Wrangell is situated at the mouth of the fast-flowing Stikine River, whose icy silt-laden waters join the calm waters of the Inside Passage. What this town lack in 5-star luxury it made up for in character as this town has escaped the blandness being inflicted by modern fast-food joints, freeways and shopping malls. It's few sealed roads are mainly navigated by truck. Front yards are a treasure trove of outboard motors, fishing paraphernalia and anything that might prove useful if the boats and planes were ever prevented from keeping the local inhabitants in touch with the citizens of the 'lower 49'. All the locals in this town had interesting stories and hospitality to spare.

My local guides provided both water transport and protection from the bears. This enabled me to both access the backwaters of the Inside Passage and allow me to focus on my photography (and not what was approaching over my shoulder).

While exploring the Inside Passage of the Glacier Bay National Park in late August I came across a mystical and magical environment of ever-changing light - further enhanced by the low-lying clouds that appeared to dance and kiss the tranquil waters.

On the way to photograph the drama of the 'calving' action at LeConte Glacier my boat weaved its way past blue icebergs of ever-increasing size and beauty.

The Inside Passage in late summer offers an abundance of photographic opportunities for the traveller looking for amazing scenery with an abundance of wildlife. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this to other photographers seeking locations less visited.

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