Alaska Outdoors

Discovery Southeast naturalist Richard Carstensen speaks to a group of hikers about the origins of the wetlands during a break on the hike. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)
Discovery Southeast naturalist Richard Carstensen speaks to a group of hikers about the origins of the wetlands during a break on the hike. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire)
Three 2-year-old black bear cubs look hunt spawning sockeye salmon in Steep Creek at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center on Thursday, August 16, 2018. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)

Annual Steep Creek closure goes into effect

As of Friday, the non-elevated portions of the Steep Creek Trail are closed, the U.S. Forest Service announced. The annual closure of parts of the… Continue reading

Three 2-year-old black bear cubs look hunt spawning sockeye salmon in Steep Creek at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center on Thursday, August 16, 2018. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)
The Valley of 10,000 Smokes pictured during a visit in 2018. (Courtesy Photo / Bob Gillis)

Alaska Science Forum: 110 years since the largest Alaska eruption

“Stretching as far as the eye could reach … were hundreds — no, thousands — of little volcanoes.”

The Valley of 10,000 Smokes pictured during a visit in 2018. (Courtesy Photo / Bob Gillis)
The whorl of seed-bearing follicles of fern-leaf goldthread is more robust, but similar in form to that of three-leaf goldthread. (Courtesy Photo / Bob Armstrong)

On the Trails: Buttercups and their relatives

“Buttercups”—the name conjures up an image of lots of bright yellow flowers, which we enjoyed recently in Cowee Meadows and which brighten the roadsides. But,… Continue reading

The whorl of seed-bearing follicles of fern-leaf goldthread is more robust, but similar in form to that of three-leaf goldthread. (Courtesy Photo / Bob Armstrong)
Mountain view from Mt. Roberts featuring Hike for a Pint passport and water bottle for this summer’s event. (Courtesy photo / Meghan Tabcek)
Mountain view from Mt. Roberts featuring Hike for a Pint passport and water bottle for this summer’s event. (Courtesy photo / Meghan Tabcek)
Dan Mann wades Echo Creek looking for a spot his scientific party can cross safely. The group ended up crossing the creek upstream of this point. (Courtesy Photo by Ned Rozell)

A half century in a difficult, dynamic place

Tasting 13,000-year-old volcanic ash.

Dan Mann wades Echo Creek looking for a spot his scientific party can cross safely. The group ended up crossing the creek upstream of this point. (Courtesy Photo by Ned Rozell)
Components for Eaglecrest’s recently purchased gondola system sit packed up as they’re prepared for the voyage to Alaska from Austria. (Courtesy photo / Dave Scanlan)

Some assembly required: Shipping process for new Eaglecrest gondola is underway

Once they’re crated up, they’ve got a sea voyage of more than 10,000 miles ahead.

Components for Eaglecrest’s recently purchased gondola system sit packed up as they’re prepared for the voyage to Alaska from Austria. (Courtesy photo / Dave Scanlan)
A very young oystercatcher chick waits for a parent.  (Courtesy Photo / Bob Armstrong)

On the Trails: Oystercatchers, pinesap and spittlebugs

At the mouth of Cowee Creek, sometime in mid-June, we’d found a vigilant pair of black oystercatchers, presumably with a nest nearby. A couple of… Continue reading

A very young oystercatcher chick waits for a parent.  (Courtesy Photo / Bob Armstrong)
The author’s wife with her first keeper king salmon of the 2022 season. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)

I Went to the Woods: King size problem

We didn’t find the fish. We found a fish. A fish that was too small.

The author’s wife with her first keeper king salmon of the 2022 season. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)
Larisa Bishop Boros
This photo available under a Creative Commons license shows a male silver-haired bat captured in Ozark National Scenic Riverways in 2010. A bat found in Douglas tested positive for rabies, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced.

Bat found in Douglas tests positive for rabies

No report of rabies exposure to people, according to Department of Fish and Game.

Larisa Bishop Boros
This photo available under a Creative Commons license shows a male silver-haired bat captured in Ozark National Scenic Riverways in 2010. A bat found in Douglas tested positive for rabies, the Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced.
A brood of young mallard ducklings stay close to mom.(Courtesy Photo / Helen Unruh)

On the Trails: Having bird fun in mid-June

“As June progressed, there was an assortment of interesting observations in my yard.”

A brood of young mallard ducklings stay close to mom.(Courtesy Photo / Helen Unruh)
Ben Gaglioti, an ecologist at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, stands next to a mountain hemlock tree damaged in winter on the outer coast of Glacier Bay National Park in Southeast Alaska. (Courtesy Photos / Ned Rozell)

Alaska Science Forum: Bonsai trees tell of winters long past

By Ned Rozell A GREEN PLATEAU NORTH OF LITUYA BAY — “These are museum-class bonsais,” Ben Gaglioti says as we walk through an elfin forest.… Continue reading

Ben Gaglioti, an ecologist at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, stands next to a mountain hemlock tree damaged in winter on the outer coast of Glacier Bay National Park in Southeast Alaska. (Courtesy Photos / Ned Rozell)
The author's wife seasons a fresh chunk of king salmon for dinner at the Point Amargura forest service cabin near Craig. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)

I Went to the Woods: The cabin life

What says love like a Forest Service cabin?

The author's wife seasons a fresh chunk of king salmon for dinner at the Point Amargura forest service cabin near Craig. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)
A male red-winged blackbird displays his red epaulets (Courtesy Photo / Bob Armstrong)
Video

Watching red-winged blackbirds

Their favorite foods include dragonflies and damselflies.

A male red-winged blackbird displays his red epaulets (Courtesy Photo / Bob Armstrong)
Video
. Lewis Sharman crosses a fallen Sitka spruce tree over Echo Creek just north of Lituya Bay in Southeast Alaska. (Courtesy Photo / Ned Rozell)

Rugged science on the Southeast coast

The first creek we crossed on this trip filled my Xtratufs with clear water.

. Lewis Sharman crosses a fallen Sitka spruce tree over Echo Creek just north of Lituya Bay in Southeast Alaska. (Courtesy Photo / Ned Rozell)
A male cloudberry flower resembles a female flower but has no visible ovaries. (Courtesy Photo / Kerry Howard)

On the Trails: Blooms, birds and bears in June

Notes from June.

A male cloudberry flower resembles a female flower but has no visible ovaries. (Courtesy Photo / Kerry Howard)
Katey Walter Anthony and Peter Anthony in Cherskii, Russia. (Courtesy Photo / Katey Walter Anthony)

Alaska Science Forum: Scientist’s memoir is revealing and brave

“Chasing Lakes: Love, Science, and the Secrets of the Arctic.”

Katey Walter Anthony and Peter Anthony in Cherskii, Russia. (Courtesy Photo / Katey Walter Anthony)
The author takes a few shots of the sun and lantern-lit tent after sunset on a bear hunt earlier this spring. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)

I Went to the Woods: At the speed of sound

Being reflective is not about high ground. It’s not about your place compared to others…

The author takes a few shots of the sun and lantern-lit tent after sunset on a bear hunt earlier this spring. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)
The author’s appreciation for steelhead has turned into something like reverence considering what’s happening to populations in the Lower 48 and Canada. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)

I Went to the Woods: Silent steel

“You forget most of what ends up in the freezer, but those steelhead, they stick with you.”

The author’s appreciation for steelhead has turned into something like reverence considering what’s happening to populations in the Lower 48 and Canada. (Jeff Lund / For the Juneau Empire)