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Eagles and Salmon in Juneau, Alaska

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

overcast 0 °F

It finally stopped raining sometime overnight. Still cloudy, but we're hoping for some sun this afternoon. We do some chores in the morning, including a trip to the grocery store. After we leave Juneau tomorrow, we'll be in small towns along the inside passage for the next six nights, so we buy food for the next week.

We're sitting in the trailer having lunch when we see a small black bear in the campground a few campsites down from ours. I run for the camera and take a picture, but Jere insists that we go outside to take a picture. "It's a bear!" I'm not going outside to take a picture, so I give the camera to Jere and he goes after the bear to take a picture.
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After lunch we drive to the Alaska Brewing Company to take their tour and sample their free beer. It actually turns out to be fun. Jere tries 3 different kinds of beer and I take a swig of each. I'm not a beer drinker, but much to his surprise I actually like the last one he gives me to try. It's a dark beer and he doesn't care for it. We find out during the tour that the beer that I like is brewed to have a smoked salmon taste to it -- I love salmon! In fact I keep telling Joe that 'you can't eat too much salmon or see too many bald eagles' :-)
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We also meet a couple there who recognize us as "you're the ones with the large 5th wheel on the ferry from Haines!" We had many onlookers as we loaded our large rig onto the ferry at Haines -- these are two of them AND THEY RECOGNIZE US! Jere later asks me "How did they recognize us?" I think it's because everyone else was sitting in their cars reading or relaxing -- we were pacing in the parking lot wondering how we were going to get our rig down the ramp and into the ferry :-)

After the brewery we drive over to Douglas Island, across the water from downtown Juneau. It drizzles off and on, but we have a nice drive, making occasional stops to look at the scenery.
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Then we drive over to a creek that empties into the water north of Juneau.
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We have been driving by this area the last few days and there are always lots of bald eagles here. We park the car and walk over to the edge of the creek. The creek is full of salmon trying to swim upstream. The fish are about 18" long and they're trying to swim in water that is only a few inches deep at places. They are determined to get upstream. It just amazes me when I watch them. They swim in the ocean for several years and then return to the stream where they were born and do whatever they can to swim back upstream, where they will spawn and die.
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So we watch the salmon for awhile, but we also are amazed by the 30 or so bald eagles here. Most of them sitting by the banks of the water.
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We stay for about an hour or so watching the salmon and the eagles. I have to admit that I am just in awe of this scene. This is where I wanted to come yesterday for my birthday, but the weather did not cooperate. It's not a great day today, but definately better than yesterday weather-wise.

It's dinnertime, so we return to the trailer for dinner (in the crockpot) and then do some chores to get us ready for our ferry ride tomorrow. It may be awhile til the next blog entry. Not sure when we'll get wifi next. We take the ferry to Sitka tomorrow. After two days in Sitka, we get back on the ferry to Petersburg for 2 days, then on to Wrangell for 2 days, Ketchikan for 2 days and then finally get off the ferry at Prince Rupert, Canada.

Posted by jengelman 13:12 Archived in USA Tagged family_travel

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