Achingly Beautiful Inlet in Alaska

Location: Baranof Island, southeast Alaska.

Comments: One of my “finds” this season is a beautiful inlet tucked into the east side of Baranof Island. Actually, beautiful doesn’t begin to describe it. Maybe achingly beautiful. Just imagine calm glassy water with the vivid green of tall spruce, hemlock and fir trees towering along the shoreline and then steep granite cliffs that transition into snow covered mountains rising over 3000 feet right above us. Top it off with a roaring waterfall and the odd grizzly bear wandering around the estuary and it becomes hard to imagine anything more beautiful. To be honest, we didn’t actually see any brown bears at the estuary today so I took a bit of an exploratory cruise up a different arm of the same inlet “to see what we could see” (no pun intended reference bears). We found one grizzly bear at the head end of the inlet which was cool. But what was even more spectacular was a hidden and very narrow inlet that was not much more than a cut in the trees. I caught a glimpse of a magnificent and very tall waterfall with a big plume of spray as we cruised past the gap in the trees, jammed the engines in reverse, and tucked the nose of the Nautilus Explorer into the gap. The waterfall was indeed stunningly beautiful. Oh yeah, we went scuba diving today as well!! Our site at the entrance to this inlet is the closest thing we have to guaranteed giant pacific octopus sightings. I love Alaska.

–Captain Mike


Weather: High scattered clouds, beautiful weather, temperatures in the low 70’s, flat calm without a breath of wind.

Water: Visibility 20 feet, water temperature 45 – 46°F.

By Nautilus Staff

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