Monday, July 28, 2014


We had a great stay in Haines with the usual mix of weather from rain, to clouds, to sun.  Typical Alaska. We hiked, did some exploring and made new friends.  One disappointment was the trip we wanted to take from here to Juneau was full every day.  The good news, we were able to book the same trip from Skagway, our next stop.  Haines is a small working village that is more about fishing than tourism.  Unlike some other popular tourist towns, the population is the same year round.  It sits right on the water and is surrounded by beautiful mountains, so we had great scenery and wildlife viewing..
You can see Opus at Oceanside, the small RV park with 23 sites right on the water where we stayed.  The owner, Joyce, was really friendly and very helpful about informing us what to do and see in town.
This is our front window view.  We did a hike to the distant point on the right.
Haines is know for its eagles with 300 to 400 year round birds and as many as 4000 in the fall when the fish are running.  Most of these were right in front of Opus.
What appears to be an ever growing collection of cairns. 
On two beautiful days we hiked.  What a change from the interior of Alaska.  The forest here was crowded with many tall trees.
The hike to the top of Mount Riley offered one of the most spectacular 360 degree views we have very experienced.  You can see the town on the left and Tayia Inlet that goes to Skagway on the right.
Loving the sunshine with Rainbow Glacier in the background.
This is looking south where the Chilkat River flows into Lynn Canal that goes all the way to Juneau.
At the RV park we had a dungeness crab potluck.  The locally caught crabs were cleaned and steamed and served by Buffalo, the camp host.  No butter or sauce required for these fresh tasty treats. 
Haines has three museums, the American Bald Eagle Foundation (top), the Sheldon Museum (left) and the Hammer Museum (right).  Each has its own unique display.
The Sheldon has a great selection of local history items and Tlingit native artifacts.  This is a great stop.
The Bald Eagle Foundation is dedicated to preserving eagle habitat and also work to rehabilitate injured raptors.  We got a close up look at these three, including the resident eagle, Bella, whose wings were damaged beyond repair when she hit power lines.  Don't miss being there for Bella's 2:30 feeding.  There is also a great collection with all the animals of Alaska in a huge diorama. 
What can be said about the Hammer Museum.  They really pound home the fact there are so many different kinds of hammers for so many different jobs.
We met Marcel and Sonya at a stop along the Glenn Highway and crossed paths with them a couple of times on our way to Haines.  We finally met up with them in Haines and had dinner together and hope to stop and see them in Winnipeg on the way back to WashPA.
Haines small boat harbor.  Later in the week it was full of gill netters who were waiting for the salmon season to open.  The season is only open for a few days and they fish regardless of the weather making it a deadliest catch kind of job.
More beautiful mountains and Fort William H. Seward.  The fort was built in 1902 to have a military presence after gold was discovered in the Klondike.  After WWII the army sold the fort to several former soldiers who were stationed here.
Top left is the old firehouse that has just been restored.  Top right, a couple old cars and the chief surgeon's house.  Bottom is the enlisted men's barracks and the big houses along officers row.  The fort is typical of many we have seen from the same period during our travels.
A center dealing with Tlingit culture and carving is located on the fort grounds.  We met a local carver who did fantastic work. 
At Oceanside we met Bjorn and Britta from Hamburg, Germany.  This is their fourth trip to Alaska and this one is four months long.  They are able to take extended leaves from their jobs every four or five years.  How great is that!!  We had a fun time swapping travel stories and now have a place to stay when we make it to Hamburg.
Every evening we saw three or four big cruise ships come by on their way from Skagway.  A couple of small ships, like the one on the left, stopped in Haines while we were there.  They only get one big ship a week.
Thursday was our seventh "roadaversary" of being on the road, so we celebrated with a one hour cruise on an Alaska Marine Highway ferry to Skagway.  To load, I had to drive onto the ship through the side, drive to the rear, do a 180 degree turn, and pull to the front near the door I entered.  Very interesting maneuvering and I'm glad I had seven years of experience under my belt before doing it!!!


Mollie said...

Love the pictures and your comments - love the scarf Nancy - wish I could wear one. Larry & Red went halibut fishing and without you and your big catches they only brought home about 12# each. Larry has caught his limit the last 2 days of salmon and talked me into staying at least to the weekend....wanting to go to Valdez. Take care you two!

Mollie said...

Larry is finally catching the reds - had 7 for weeks and has got 5 in 2 days. Going back tomorrow. Freezer is getting full!!! Hope you guys continue to have a safe journey south. Maybe we will meet up down the road. (come see us in Alabama)

John and Pam ( said...

Dungeness crab is my very favorite!! It never needs butter...yum!!!

I am glad you didn't post any pictures of that move in the ferry. I would have had to sit in the back.