Sitka has many microclimates along its 14-mile road season. Even a few hundred feet of altitude or distance from the ocean makes a difference. And even along the ocean there are differences. As you approach Starrigavan Bay it gets colder, … Continue reading Winter at the End of the Road.
Winter in Sitka is a season the tourists don’t see. They often ask us “What do you do in the winter?” We smile and think about … Continue reading Winter on the Totem Trail
Sometimes I am out and about when the sun sets especially in December when it sets just after 3 PM. Fortunately I have a new iPhone 13 pro so I always have a reasonable camera with me. These are sunset … Continue reading Out and About When The Sun Goes Down.
Suzi and I are skipping the rest of the winter. We’ll attempt to complete the circumnavigation we started in 2020 when our world cruise was interrupted in Australia, and we were sent packing back to Sitka and quarantine and then … Continue reading Winter Sunsets From My Perch
My son, Brian, and I went out Sawmill Creek Road past the old mill site to look at the half mile where a wall of ice sometimes forms. It was not as continuous as it was when Suzi and I … Continue reading Winter Wall 2.0
I’ve played Santa on several occasions; I have the beard and physique to pull it off. While I enjoyed it, I was somewhat put off by the greed displayed by some of the kids who sat on my lap when … Continue reading Claus for the Cause
Sometimes Sitka surprises me, even having lived here for more than 40 years. A week or so ago I was driving and walking along Sawmill Creek Road, beyond the old mill site, across the Sawmill Creek Bridge, heading for Herring … Continue reading Winter Wall
I missed it the last two years. We HAD Whalefest for the last two years, but it was virtual, on zoom. We got great lectures at the science symposium that is always the center of Whalefest, but we missed the … Continue reading Sitka Whalefest. It’s Back!
An Arctic air mass sits over Southeast Alaska. It is cold, colder than usual in November. It is acting like late December or January. If I lived on the inside, closer to the mainland, I could have horrific winds as … Continue reading Whalefest Cruise, 2022.
October 18, Alaska Day, marks the anniversary of the transfer of Alaska’s sovereignty from Russia to America. The problem is that sovereignty was not Russia’s to transfer. The land was owned for thousands of years by indigenous people ranging from … Continue reading Reconciliation Day 2022
The joke in Sitka is that the Russians did not want to spend another rainy October in Sitka so sold it to the Americans and pulled out on October 18, 1867. That’s why we celebrate Alaska Day. Of course, the … Continue reading Alaska Day Parade 2022 (more pics)
Halloween comes twice for kids in Sitka. The preview is on Alaska Day. Kids line the parade route with their sacks open, ready to catch candy thrown by the different marching groups. Sometimes the candy catch can seem a bit … Continue reading Halloween in Disguise (Alaska Day, 2022)
Does anyone know how bagpipes became an integral part of Sitka’s Alaska Day celebration? I don’t, but my first Alaska Day in Sitka featured bagpipes from firefighters somewhere in Washington State. Currently it is the Seattle Firefighters who come to … Continue reading Bagpipes and Cool Patches
October is a good month to leave Southeast Alaska. It rains all the time, at least it used to. The last couple of years we have had some surprisingly good weather in October, like this year. But the joke is … Continue reading Waiting For Alaska Day
I have never had a vacation where I could look out from my cabin and see my house across the bay. But that’s what happened this weekend. Living at my house is already kind of like being on vacation. My … Continue reading A Vacation in Plain Sight
Yesterday I went to Silver Bay and saw some change in color of the ground cover and the fireweed in it’s final burst of rebirth. (see the post before this one.) I thought that if I went up to the … Continue reading Looking for Fall
Today Jamestown Bay was fogbound for most of the day as was most of Sitka to the seaward. I got in the car and drove into Silver Bay, a long fjord that cuts into the island’s mountains. When I got … Continue reading Fogbound Seaward but in Silver Bay…
It wasn’t raining. In mid August that’s a good thing if you are going out on a wildlife cruise. The last week has had the feeling of autumn, as the fireweed tops out and the leaves on the ground bush … Continue reading Late Summer Break
August 9, 2022 Yesterday and today are big cruise ship days in Sitka. When more than 5,000 visitors are scheduled, the city closes Lincoln St. to cars and trucks and opens it for tourists. At the beginning of the season, … Continue reading Big Ship Day!
The aurora started on April 8, a green glow behind the clouds. On April 9 we had a full blown Magnetic Storm firing solar particles into the atmosphere and creating a beautiful Aurora. Continue reading Magnetic Storm Warnings
The “Blessing of the Fleet” is one of those small town Sitka rituals that mark our seasons. It is on Palm Sunday, a time to stop and remember all of those who our community has lost during the past year, … Continue reading Blessing of the Fleet, 2022
Last night we had a magnetic storm, that triggered a major aurora that danced for more than 5 hours. I watched better than half of it, starting at about 9:30. Often the aurora were in constant motion, flashing not only … Continue reading Is the Aurora Plural or are they Singular?
After a pandemic induced hiatus Alaska Day returned, in limited form, to Sitka. Alaska Day Commemorates the day that the Russian Flag was lowered, and the American Flag raised over Castle Hill (Noow Tlein in Tlingit) and the United States … Continue reading Alaska Day, 2021
Sunday, October 17, folks gathered on Noow Tlein (Castle Hill) to commemorate Reconciliation Day. Reconciliation Day is an attempt to recast Alaska Day. They gathered a day early because on Alaska Day, October 18, the hill was filled with military … Continue reading Reconciliation Day, 2021