Our last full day of the voyage was action packed with wildlife, hiking, stunning scenery, and even a bit of swimming (by many and on purpose).
Before breakfast, blue skies and views of the Fairweather range were the setting for a humpback whale mother and calf. Shortly after we set off in our fleet of Zodiacs to explore the Inian Islands. This set of small islands is along the outer coast and with the rising tide, water was pouring in through the passes between islands. An exciting ride was had by all and a variety of wildlife was spotted. Everyone enjoyed sea lions and sea otters, and many tried to decide which was their favorite. Some got to see tufted puffins and humpback whales, while some lucky folks got to spend time with my favorite animal, killer whales. A pod of resident, or fish-eating orca were cruising along the shoreline. A calf was quite active and two adult males with tall six-foot dorsal fins were massive.
After lunch we all explored George Island. A short hike led us to a World War II gun that was placed here to protect the strategic entrance to the Inside Passage. Upon returning to the beach, many took advantage of the sunny and warm weather to do a polar plunge. Hot drinks served with a smile by our bartender Shayne was a perfect ending to our day’s activities. We pulled anchor and headed towards Juneau while thinking back on our incredible voyage. Alaska delivered its finest this week, with abundant wildlife, great weather, and postcard perfect scenery.