Baranof Island Solo Expedition, 2010


Walking Among Giants...

The Maps. The plan is simple. Fly to Sitka, hitch a boat ride to the North end of Baranof Island, Alaska. Trek the entire length of the island by foot and packraft, crossing icefields with crampons one day and jigging for rockfish in fjords the next. Weave my way through ancient rainforest valleys, avoiding any of 860 grizzly bears that dot the island. This should take me about 3.5 to 4 weeks, if all goes according to plan. If not, we'll see. The maps you see to the right are standard USGS Alaska Resolution (1:63.3K, 1 inch per 1 mile), and measure about nine feet tall. The plan (in as much detail as can be assumed) is outlined in red. There will be much zig-zagging between points, maybe a few campsites along the way.

Why Baranof Island? Because it's there. The wild middle child of SE Alaska's "ABC Islands" (Admiralty, Baranof, Chicagof), Baranof Island harbors some of the most rugged coastlines of all of SE Alaska (which says a lot). Massive old-growth rainforests coat the floors of glacier-carved fjords, harboring intense runs of salmon (and an unusually high concentration of coastal Brown bears). The valleys are bookended by massive peaks rising a mile straight up from the sea, draped in icefields and hanging glaciers. The place begs to be explored. But enough of me talking, take a look for yourself! (Click on the images for detail. Images provided by Don Kluting, Sitka, AK. To read more about Don, visit the Sitka Mountain Rescue Blog or view more of his photos at sitkascenesphotography.com.)

During the journey, check out the Tracking Page to see where I am along the island. Happy Trekking, and I hope to have some tales to share upon my return!


Blue Lake Reflections Bear Peak Mount Edgecumbe Don Kluting



This trip is brought to you in part by the proud support of a few generous sponsors and close friends...

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If you wish to contact me about this trip or any other, feel free at mike@rainforesttreks.com