Saturday, June 1, 2013

a few from the big camera...

 thought i would alternate between the pictures from my little powershot and the canon rebel.  those are what i shoot with of late.  most of these are from the ride out and that first paddle.  our boat had plenty of room so we had tourists on board so happily the captain stopped for cool stuff along the way.  above is at the sea lion rookery.
 the buoy from our exit from the main harbor and below we stopped at lowel point to pick up more day paddlers, probably a different company.  it was foggy but lots of activity out there at 8 am on any summer day.  when we returned it was sunny out and there was lots of kids in the water and regular beach activity.  the kids are pretty tough as the water doesn't get very warm ever.  kids are kids though and sun means water and fun.
 we also stopped to watch this pod of killer whales.  they are beautiful animals and known to be pretty efficient killers. nice to be in the larger boat when a bunch go by.  i was slightly nervous when we were in our little kayaks and we saw one up by holgate glacier.
 there were a few young killers in this pod...
 worked acc the last two nights and i said i'd go in again tonight overtime, but not until 11 pm.  8 hours overtime will add to my nome money.  val dropped out so now it's just me going.  i'll do fine,but it will be more spendy not splitting hotel and car rental along with gas.  anyone want to go?  june 20-25th?
 we also saw humpbacks out there.  not right in the same area as the killers...they have been known to hunt and kill the young humpbacks so i suspect they keep their distance from them . didn't see any big leaps or dives, just cruising along feeding mostly.  we saw tons of leaps and slaps from humpbacks a few years back in glacier bay/point adolphus.
 never tire of spotting whales and wildlife out there.  not always easy to get pictures of animals that often submerge before you can get a good focus on them.
 foggy, but that makes for interesting pictures too.
 all our main gear was below so my only mistake was not getting out a snack bag for this nearly 3 hour journey to holgate.  got pretty hungry.  that first paddle was a bit disorganized as well.  always takes that first camp trip to get all your gear in order.  don't think i forgot anything critical once we hit the water, but food on deck would have been nice.
 puffins, tufted on the water.  who doesn't love those puffins...such cute birds!
 happy i just promised 8 hours tonight.  was able to wake up take the dogs to campbell airstrip for a nice walk and then nap again this afternoon.  haven't done too much overtime of late though i should so i could save up for a kitchen remodel.  my house desperately needs that!  the roof is getting to the point it will need to be replaced as well.  it's just tiring doing extra.  8 hours should seems super short though. a few full time staff members are leaving.  being short staffed is the alaska way.  lots of folks move here for a few years then move on.  acc has lots of travelers right now.  each time i go i'm wondering who these people are.  i think they had 18 vents out of 28 beds and only one empty bed last night of those.
 i like being in the resource pool.  i'm often in the adult icu but i get to change it up with other units like peds and er from time to time.
more sea lions!
 trying to catch up on my newspaper reading.  of course a new paper comes each day slowing that process down.  i do have the paper on my ipad, but there is still some comfort in enjoying a real newspaper.  things that are normal for my generation are totally lost on the next, newspapers, tv and music are all becoming extinct.  eventually i will age out and then my time on earth will be over.  it is amazing how much changes on this earth in a lifetime.  at least in the industrialized human world.  i suspect not much changes for these sea lions except increased human activity in their space. they don't have to worry about adapting to computers and iphones and ipads and all that.
 not sure if these are murres or guilliants?  i know i spelled that wrong.  scott would just say, "birds".  that started after we were in st paul in the pribilofs. it's a huge birder paradise, which we were pretty clueless about before we headed there.  we just went to see the scenery and wildlife.  the first thing asked of us after we deboarded and were picked up by the hotel people and a few guests was if we were birders.  we were not.  we felt immediately shunned as now we were not going to have bird lists to discuss with our new tourist comrades.  our guides that week would tell us all about every little bird we saw and scott would just say "bird".  we were the odd tourists in that we just wanted to hike all over and explore in general.  in the end i think our tour guide enjoyed showing us all over and talked about more than just birds.
 it was just news to us all that people would travel the globe in search of certain species.
 holgate glacier.  we unloaded, shifted it all to cabin and then got ready to paddle.
 it looks immense, but never as much as when you are in a kayak at the base of it.  they are moving forward and you can hear the sounds of the ice shifting from the cabin.
 i think blossom and rio were both pretty sore and tired after being at their dog buddies houses.  we did take a day off pretty much.  they just get hotter in the summer "heat" of alaska.  we had 70 degree temps all week.  rio has that dark coat and blossom has those thick curls.  a normal doodle owner would shave down the curls for the summer, but i can't bear to  cut her curls.  she's just so adorable with her curls.  i just try to carry water or head to hikes with water access. rio's been enjoying time on the deck.  shell's place has easy access in/out onto deck and i think rio likes that.
 i tried to remember to flip into black and white from time to time.  when the water is calm like this i will take my canon out and leave it on my deck ( in my spray skirt).  i keep it wrapped in a camp towel to try and protect it from paddle spray. i always stow all camera gear for beach landings and take offs.  i did carry my other camera body, which was probably not necessary. i usually just take the lenses and then on land switch over to other lenses and take beach walks.  i'm sure i pulled it out at a few of our stops and took one or two shots.
 in rainy weather like we had on our second day i will leave the canon in the dry bag and just pull my little canon out of my deck bag for pictures.  taking pictures from a kayak can be a bit risky and tricky.  we've all lost camera gear.  at point adolphus both tanya and i lost a powershot each.  both on take off/landings.  a reminder to always stow for those times. i believe bob and tanya lost another powershot this trip.  it's painful.  we were able to retrieve the cameras in point adolphus.  my camera never worked again, but the card was saved so i didn't lose the photos.
 tons of waterfalls out there.  hard to do those justice from the kayak.
 quite a few tour boats headed out there.  when we went 10 years ago i think it was a week or two earlier and we saw no boats or planes except for a forest service boat that came out to check on the cabin and discuss our infractions with scott.  i think we'd pitched tents in area's we weren't supposed to.  we didn't know.
 as we paddled toward the big glacier it began a huge calving on the left side. these are just a few shots of that calving.
 some ice falls which causes more ice to fall and so on.
 pretty impressive!  we didn't get any real wave action from this calving.  when we got closer it appears that the part that calved was no longer tide water so it just piled up on the rocks below.  that will become the moraine of the glacier as it retreats. not much there to see yet.
 the tour boat gives some perpective.  those boats did cause us some waves to deal with.   most tried to slow down when they were within range of us.  others just zipped past without any regard to the waves they would cause us.  you just have to try and point the boat into those swells and make sure you aren't near any big ice bergs.
 some bergy bits.  there are different names for different sized bergs.  not sure i remember any others besides bergy bits...but it's a cute name.
 scott happy to be in the ice.  we were all excited to be in the ice. not sure what it is, but it's so cool to paddle in the ice.  part of me was always wondering if some cool artifact from eons ago would show up.  some paddlers who wrote a book looked up on a cliff and spotted an entire whale carcass coming out of the ice.  don't think that particular paddle was in alaska or not, but they did paddle alaska extensively.
 these chunks of ice have been locked up in that sea of ice for thousands of years.  it's pretty incredible.
 tanya heads towards the glacier.
 george and scott in the ice.
 the glacier is still dropping off chunks of ice as we get closer to where that area calved. you can see the piled up ice below.
 maddie seems to be enjoying her paddle trip. not too many kids get to experience this sort of thing growing up.  alaska kids are pretty lucky that way.
 a few more black and whites.
 chilly out there today.  clouds rolled in.  no rain yet, just some drizzles.  should have gotten out to pick up dog poop...from exciting paddle at a glacier to a return to cat litter and dog poop!
 my one patient last night was a bit needy.  often with patients like that i find it's best to slather them with attention early on if possible.  bed bath and tucked in they will often get relaxed enough to fall to sleep and give you peace.  it worked like a charm last night.  sadly, the people in the offices seem to have gotten in their heads that lab should come around and draw patients blood at 2 am. clearly they haven't been patients in the hospital.  who would want to fall to sleep only to be awakened within an hour or two for a lab draw.  i was able to put it off until 4am when i could do another assessment and get vital signs.  i got written up last time i did that for a patient.  lab gets in trouble if they don't get the labs drawn around 2 am now.  i wrote a note of complaint...
it's especially nuts when they wake up confused patients like this...there really should be some way for nurses to use common sense and delay certain patients lab draws.
 in the meantime, i guess i can take getting written up.
 a few of the ice.  in black and white and in it's natural state of blue.  you can see some rocks at the base of the photo below showing that this glacier could well be no longer tide water soon.
 scott got closer than i did and he saw lots of signs of this.
 the terminus of the glacier and the moraine in front of it. lots of new vocabulary around the ice!
 there are a few glaciers in alaska that are expanding and not receding and we do not have means to study every glacier up here.  holgate glacier is just an arm of the harding ice field.  i was trying to explain it to my sister in law.  as you fly over you will see like the spiders body in ice and then all these arms come down the various valley's.  there is a lot of ice if you follow this arm up to the larger ice field it originates from.
 the yukon river had many ice dams.  this is common this time of year.  the ice on the rivers is huge and as it breaks up it forms huge dams.  eventually the water pressure builds and then flooding can happen.  there has been a state of emergency as some  river villages have had flooding. from what i've read the dangerous point has passed and other communities that had evacuated are now safe.
 there was a blip in the paper in my reading about these tiny plants that were frozen in a glacier in northern canada.  they are actually sprouting after hundreds of years being dormant . another story came out of russia.  apparently a very well preserved mammoth was found and as it broke out of it's ice and thawed, actual blood seeped out of the animal.  this makes cloning of a mammoth more possible.  crazy stuff out there.
 tanya above, scott below.
 another sad story, a tourists was up here to climb denali.  he had a successful climb.  then he went river rafting out of hope and his raft flipped.  he perished.
 scott and george below take in the view of the glacier in front of them and wait for a calving to occur.  all that sunshine makes it all the more possible.
 tanya, bob and maddie.  i took one right after this in black and white that i will post later..that one turned out my opinion!!  she has put it as her facebook picture...always fun to see people use your photo's on their facebook pages. happy to be able to take the picture of people that they actually like and want to share with their family and friends.  so often we all seem to hate photo's of ourselves.
guess i should get off this computer.  will post another entry tomorrow no doubt.  still loads of photo's to show and i'm sure some stories to tell. enjoy your day.  find something grow from the cracks in sidewalks.  :-)

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