Part memoir, part almanac, and 100% delightful, Alaska’s Inside Passage covers everything from wildlife and ocean creatures to geology, bush pilots, original inhabitants, and the history of Alaska's founding.
Dale Pihlman—commercial fisherman, pilot, charter yacht operator, art teacher, and fisheries biologist—shares his lifetime fascination with everything alive, including captivating knowledge of little known facts and diverse information.
A careful researcher, Pihlman interviews scholars as well as old-timers. He reviews the history of Native peoples in the area, the Haida, Tlingit, and Tsimshian, and offers personal reminiscences of the fishermen and women, entrepreneurs and eccentrics, tucked into the islands and bays of the Inside Passage.
A full color print version is available directly from the author.
One of the traditional draws for visitors to Alaska is sport fishing for salmon and halibut. Southeast Alaska provides outstanding sport fishing opportunities, in fresh or salt water.
Purse seiners catch salmon by surrounding and capturing them. Retrieving the net and fish involves cinching up the bottom of the net as one would pull the drawstrings on a purse.
The terms troller and trawler are often confused. Trollers fish for salmon with lures or bait. Trawlers drag large, sock-shaped nets through the water for cod or rockfish.
The common Loon breeds on lakes in coniferous forests. it is territorial and usually found as solitary pairs on lakes. many a camper had enjoyed its mournful cry on a secluded lake. Seen on Southeast Alaska as a migrant.
The earth has experienced a series of ice ages in the last 12.5 million years. The last ice age to affect southeast Alaska ended about 17,000 years ago. At the height of the period, the thickness of the ice was about 3,000 feet at the coast, with the ice extending out into the ocean up to 200 miles.
The Alexander Archipelago Wolf is a subspecies of the gray wolf or timber wolf and is found only in Southeast Alaska, except for Admiralty, Baranof, and Chichagof islands. It is an adaptable creature living in a variety of habitats, but is most at home in old growth forests.
President Andrew Johnson directed Brigadier General Lovell H. Rousseau of Kentucky to act as an agent of the United States to receive the Territory from an agent of the Czar of Russia at Sitka. On October 18, 1867, the Brigadier General arrived in Sitka aboard the U.S. Ossippee under the command of Captain George F. Emmons, United States Navy.
The Brown Bear is a large-boned animal weighing over 1,000 pounds. On the coast, a salmon-rich diet creates a larger animal that does the available food inland. Interior Brown Bear are also considered Grizzlies, but they are smaller, with a more muscular hump and longer claws for digging out small mammals such as marmots, roots and insects.
A launch explored north up to Bell Island while the Chatham went around Camano Point to examine Clarence Strait. While anchored in Port Stewart, Vancouver engaged in a considerable amount of visiting and trading with the Natives. The great chief Ononnistoy paddled from Wrangell and joined four other area Tlingit chiefs for an arranged meeting.
Jackson became ill when he was a commercial fisherman. While convalescing he began carving miniature totem poles. His interest in art piqued, he enrolled in the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe New Mexico and then settled in Ketchikan
Kadjisdu.axte was a man of extraordinary skill, and was one of the greatest carvers ever. Because of his legendary skill, the most powerful chief among the Chilkats, Xetsuw, asked Kadjisdu.axch' to help create his clan house at Klukwan on the Chilkat River. What resulted was a masterpiece.
In 1922 a Wrangell Tlingit, Tillie Paul of the Teehiton clan, was involved in an event that was to have a major impact in the Native civil rights movement. Tillie was arrested in Wrangell along with Charlie Jones of the Chief Shakes lineage, for aiding and abetting illegal voting.
Lodges are common destinations for sport fisherman. These facilities vary from high-end to bare bones. some road-based facilities offer skiff rentals and a place to park your camper. High-end lodges usually involve a bush plane flight, deluxe accommodations and fully guided fishing on covered and heated boats.
The de Havilland DH_2 Beaver vies with the Piper PA-18 as the quintessential Alaska bush plane. it is a much larger plane than the PA-18, but also has amazing performance. Its high lift wing and high torque radial engine give it STOL (short take off and landing) performance making it a workhorse of the bush.
Marine snails without shells are called nudibranchs. The opalescent nudibranch is about two inches long, and because of its colorful parts and translucent body, it has an iridescent appearance. It feeds primarily on hydroids (small coral-like animals), anemones, and members of its own species.
Each species of salmon has a distinctive pattern and form to its hump, which commercial salmon fisherman recognize. Chums have the most distinctive hump.
they jump low on their side and in a circle and usually multiple times. Pinks jump erratically.
The Red Sea Cucumber, which looks like a giant worm, is marketed primarily in China, where it is called trepang. Here the skin is boiled and used as a soup base, with the spaghetti-looking innards being added. Two bands of muscles against the skin are filleted from the skin for stir fry. They are delicious. Fishermen receive about $4.00 per pound.
Her ship was at anchor, so in order to get her horses to the beach, she had them jump in the harbor, where she guided them ashore with a rowboat. With her team of horses, Harriet entered into the rigorous business of hauling freight for miners heading up the Chilkoot Pass to the gold fields.