On Monday June 3, we departed very early and were at the outer dock in Hoonah by around 9 a.m. We then tracked down the harbormaster and were able to get an assignment in a slip with power and water. We had the laundry done by around noon and were working on our to do list when Kurt cleared messages on his cell phone (my T mobile wouldn’t get anything). There was a message from my sister saying “call me asap”. I called her cell and thru some static learned that my brother Mark (far left in the 2004 photo taken on our first boat) had passed away. Cindee was in Virginia working through everything. Mark had health problems and died in his apartment—hopefully peacefully. I provided a notarized statement granting permission for Cindee to serve as administrator, something she really needed to continue handling things. We determined there was nothing I could do at this time so Kurt and I provisioned to proceed with our cruise.
On Wednesday we departed Hoonah at 4 a.m. and headed for Glacier Bay, where we had a permit for 6 days. Following breakfast at the lodge and the required briefing at park headquarters in Bartlett Bay, we headed out to Blue Mouse Cove where we anchored for two nights, with much of it rainy. We did see a bear on the beach on Thursday, the very beach we had hiked during a clear spell. It was a blackie. I also took advantage of the “down” time to try a cinnamon roll recipe from one of my cruising cookbooks.
On Friday we headed for the Marjerie Glacier; there was a lot of ice in the water and we decided not to go to the face of the glacier. We have been there two times before, in better visibility with blue skies and so we left to look for other park treats. On the way to the Marjerie , we passed close to Gloomy Knob and could see it really well and there were lots and lots of white cotton puff colored goats, many with babies. Also on the way we saw a brown bear on the beach across from Russell Island.
That evening, a new anchorage awaited us, Shag Cove in Geikie Inlet. On the way in to Shag Cove or that evening we saw 4 black bears in different locations, and presume the bear we saw the next morning was one of the 4. Wow. This cove is beautiful, with towering snow covered mountains all around. The next morning, Saturday, while getting ready to pull anchor, I glanced up out our pilothouse window to be looking eye to eye with a humpback whale who had risen ~ 10 plus feet out of the water to take a look at us. This is called spyhopping. The whale was between us and the shore and less than 100 yards away in rather shallow water. S(he) continued slowly circling the cove, and then headed out. And so did we with our next destination Sandy Cove via the Wachusett Inlet. It was a blue skies kind of day and spectacular. Then off to our anchorage, for a night with a black bear on the west beach and a brownie and her cub on the east beach. She suddenly started to smell the air, and then hurried off with her cub. I suspect she caught a whiff of the black bear (or was it me!) No it was likely the blackie, as the bears especially in this area of the park are fairly used to the non-threatening boats and the people they carry.
On Sunday we headed out to North Finger Bay via the Marble Islands, renowned for birds and Steller Sea Lions. We saw quite a few Puffins but not as many as seen in the past. We did see a lot of the sea lions hauled out, including the big bulls bellowing at each other. We felt like we might be disturbing the wildlife because of the racket, but after moving away we realized, it was the bulls jostling for position that caused upset in the sea lion groups and groups of birds fighting over nesting territory. We hadn’t bothered them at all. Our next Glacier Bay treat was to come upon a group of ~ 10-20 humpback whales bubble feeding. Later there were two bears on the beach, on opposite sides of the cove in our North Finger anchorage plus we had a visit by a humpback, a bit in the distance, while there. The beautiful weather continued.