We started our Alaskan adventure off in the small Portage Cove town of Haines. We had an amazing place to stay that was right on the water where we spent most days watching the Bald Eagles playing in the breeze. The problem with Haines…the cruise ships.
When they came in to port the internet would come to a screeching hault which made in pretty much impossible for the Hubster to work. He would get up really early and try to get some done before the ship would come in and then wait until it left late that night. All that free time during the day gave us ample opportunity to do some exploring!
Haines is known as The Valley of Eagles! And boy there were a ton of them there.
This is the best shot I got. Eagles like to fly high and are dang fast. It was hard to get a decent shot!! We drove through the Bald Eagle Preserve which is on the way into town, but we didn’t see any there. I guess we might have gone at the wrong time? That’s ok though, because we saw plenty of them around town!
We spent a few hours one morning hiking through the rain forest. Yup, Alaska has a rain forest!
We had it on good authority that bears rarely visited this area because there wasn’t a food source for them. I was still a little nervous. I kept looking behind me just to make sure. We made lots of noise and had a really enjoyable morning hiking through a forest that looked like it it was made for a movie! Fun side note…We bought two bear bells before we started our trip because people kept telling us it was a good way to avoid bears. When we got to Banff we told one of the Rangers we had them and she kind of smiled and got this look on her face before she told us the Rangers liked to call bear bells…dinner bells. The bears hear them so much they ignore them so when you’re out on the trail thinking you’re alerting the bears to your presence so they wont get startled…you’re not. The bears will sometimes even follow the noise of the bells in hopes of food. Needless to say…we’ve not used them.
We hiked down to the beach and took in the view for a bit before heading back to the car.
We also went to the local fish cannery. It wasn’t in operation the day we went, but we got to walk around. You can see a it in the photo below.
After we visited the Cannery, we went back into town and ate at a little fish shack owned by the Cannery.
I had the halibut and the rockfish. Jerl and I both liked the rockfish the most. It was so flakey and buttery…yum!
This guy…he was so sure we were going to feed him. He watched and danced and even tried to sneak up under the table and grab a fry from Littlest. There were just as many (if not more) ravens in Haines as Bald Eagles, and boy, let me tell you…those birds are so noisy! They have so many different sounds. One morning our cat Magnus was laying on the chair watching a great big raven out the door and I swear to you it sounded like that raven was laughing at him. I got up and looked out the door expecting to see a person there.
One of our favorite things to do was visit Alaska Rod’s. We ended up going in there all but one of the days we were in Haines. Rod and Rhonda were a wealth of information on the area and became fast friends. It didn’t hurt we always got free samples of the fudge Rod makes. It’s hands down the best fudge we’ve ever had. I think we ended up buying a couple of pounds of it! It didn’t last long…I’m seriously thinking about having him ship us some! If you’re ever in Haines, Alaska Rod’s is a must stop!
On our quest to find some bears (from the safety of our car) we drove up to this river…it was really pretty…where they have this contraption that goes all the way across the river so that the fish are funneled into this one small opening and this guy stands there all day counting fish. Sound like fun?
And…of course there were the flowers…so many pretty ones, but here are my favorites.
This beauty is another weed. Go ahead…laugh at my infatuation with weeds. It’s ok. I often chuckle to myself about how many flower/weed pictures I take. So, this one… you don’t want to touch. We’ve heard it called a few different names now. Wild Celery and Cow Parsnip are a couple. The oils on this plant cause severe burns when you get it on your skin and the sun hits it. This stuff is everywhere too.
I don’t know what the name of this one is. It’s a type of rose and we saw them in quite a few places in town. They smelled heavenly!
Littlest got an impromptu guitar lesson in front of our RV by one of our fellow campers! Not a bad view for a lesson!
We did get a chip in our windshield. We had a guy come out and fix it. You can’t really even tell now.
We ended up leaving Haines early so Jerl could work. We’re glad we visited Haines, but can’t really see ourselves going back…unless it’s to get some fudge.
See y’all on the road!