Pos: 59.5471, -139.7316
Acc: Steve’s house
Dist: 105 km in two days
Start: 00:00 End: 10:50
It really could have been worse conditions on this night paddle! I was warm-ish, dry-ish, had enough to eat and drink, could pee, it was dry from the sky, calm-ish seas and light enough not to have to additionally fight sea sickness.
Just the tiredness kicked in as usually, a few cat naps on the front- or back deck were helpful to me. My lower back felt only a bit sore on the backrest on the long run, and there was this tiny itching spot on my back I had a tough time to reach…but again, it could be much worse!
When the full morning light came back, seas were looking even more smooth, and I could have tried to paddle into the last suitable river mouth to land, the Ahrnklin River, but I was so far out, and I was too tired to even try it. And what are another 25 km now…I was yearning to have a shower, a dry place to relax and some nice company at my new host’s place. Paddle on!
I finally cold spot the headland of Yakutat Bay, so just an easy paddle around the corner, and you will be “home and housed”! What first looked like “just around the corner”, dragged out to be a very wide berth through tidal waters, avoiding getting caught at the shore break and trapped in one of the many solid fishing nets. I was an hour too late, and had to paddle either in slack water or even a bit against the current, but I slowly but surely made headway into the bay, around the corner and could eventually spot Yakutat city!
Yakutat has 600 people, no road access, but a twice a day jet flying in, and a once a month’s ferry going south or north. My host is Steve Dice, through a connection of Joel Meier, an avid paddler and blog follower. Joel has been Steve’s old professor. Steve is not a paddler, but a surfer by heart with great conditions on his doorstep and many other sports interests. He has traveled the world and lives the typical life of a man in a remote Alaskan place with a lot of fishing, hunting and part-time also commercial fishing besides his main job at the airport and other places which needs big machine operation. He is a great company and useful source of local knowledge. Thanks for looking after me, Steve!