Monday, October 30, 2006
What a fun evening it was! Around 60 people attended in costume!
Patrick was a cowboy and I was a cat in a litter box. The tootsie rolls in the box were a big hit.
Nora was an american idol contestant, but she didn't make an appearance at the party. She opted for beauty sleep at a babysitters house and did great! I picked her up at midnight from a deep sleep.
And Roxy celebrated the evening with her friend Otis in the back yard chewing on deer bones. Lucky dogs.
Gregg, Mike and I got up early and hiked in the dark to reach the high country before sunrise. Our reward was a spectacular sunrise. The sky turned purple long before the sun came up and the snow on the ground made it seem much lighter than it actually was. At sunrise all the deer were soaking up the sun on the south facing slopes. (PGS)
Friday, October 27, 2006
Still a little slow here on Kodiak, so time for another from the archives. This time we feature Ella's Halloween visit from 2001. Back in the old days Ella lived close by in Anchorage and would come down to Kodiak for holidays. In this photo Ella and I accompanied Zoya up to the 'crossfox' lakes as she tried to tag a deer (Note the rifle over her shoulder). Ella and I walked behind as Zoya creeped up the trail on high alert for deer.
On another note, we actually got a little snow yesterday (flurries). Kodiak looks just about like what it does in this photo, and it should because it was taken on practically the same date 5 years ago. Ski season is almost here!
Monday, October 23, 2006
Zoya and I have decided to add a new feature to our blog for those times when not a lot is happening at 4002 Cliffside Road (Do you really want us to post some more deer hunting pictures from the past weekend?) - so it's time for blasts from the past!
In this one we feature my mom and dad's visit to Kodiak in 1967. It is important to realize that I am not the first Saltonstall to visit Kodiak. My dad visited Kodiak in February 1967 to do a story on the king crab industry for Time magazine. He brought my mom with him my and a family friend Mr Robinson (pictured here with my mom - my dad took the photo).
They stayed at the Kodiak Inn (big bear statue out front) and visited Port Wakefield where they saw their first snowmobile (my mom tells me that the snowmobilers were worried about bears hibernating in the caves created under the boughs of spruce trees bent over by snow).
My mom reports that Kodiak was a wild place. She remembers that at one particular bar a patron ran about yelling 'jesus loves me - yes he does' while randomly throwing darts about the bar in a drunken frenzy.
Zoya and I can confidently say that this sort of behavior is no longer tolerated in Kodiak (unless you are at the Mecca at 2AM - we assume my mom was not at a bar at 2AM in 1967).
My mom stands next to what looks like a Grummen Widgeon (but might be a Grummen Goose to my uneducated eyes) both are still used commercially here on Kodiak. But none land at the boat harbor anymore! Patrick's mom and dad, and family friend Mr Robinson flew over to Kodiak from Homer. Patrick and Zoya both are impressed with her shades, boots, and hat!
Thursday, October 19, 2006
On Tuesday Patrick got to take a work-related ride over to Alaska Peninsula with Tom Walters in his helicopter. Beautiful flat calm day, but Patrick was still a little nervous crossing Shelikof Strait. It is a long way across the water to the Peninsula from Kodiak, and the helicopter did not have floats. It was the longest ride Patrick has ever experenced in a helicopter. While there they visited the historic village of Kaguyak. It was abandonned after the volcanic eruption of Mount Katmai in 1912 buried the place under more than 2 feet of ash. If you look closely at the photograph you can see the old housepits - all that remains of the village. Although the village Russion Orthodox church lasted into the 1950's before it burned down.
Monday, October 16, 2006
Patrick just returned from his Elk hunt on North Afognak. He went with friends Ben Millstein, Ira Edwards, Mark Rusk, Justin Hays, and Jim Eufemio on Jim's seiner. It's a yearly event intended to fill the freezer with tasty elk. Here Patrick and Mark take a welcome break on the deck of the Alpha Centuri. Most of their time on Afognak was spent bushwhacking on shore. They did manage to bring home around 300 pounds of elk meat.
Sunday, October 15, 2006
Here Justin scans for elk in the alpine. Note the 'termination dust' (first snow of the year) on the mountain in the background. The elk like to frequent the high bowls like the one seen here on the right. On this particular hike Patrick and Justin only saw a few lone bull elk. On another hike they saw 4 elk grazing on another mountain and after a three hour stalk managed to finally harvest one. It took everyone (Justin, Mark, Patrick, Ira and Ben) to get all the meat back to the boat in one trip.
Hunting elk on north Afognak requires a great deal of hiking through the spruce forset. The goal is to avoid having to bust through too much devils club, salmonberry and alder when getting to the high country where we could actually see the elk. The elk like to graze and sun in the alpine meadows. Here Justin and Ira negotiate a game trail down a hill back to the boat.
On a particularly rainy day, Justin, Mark and Patrick, surveyed for archaeological sites on Ban Island. The United States Fish & Wildlife service is interested in the condition of the sites on the refuge and Patrick and his friends found three new sites. While surveying they found this old spruce tree. When it was a seedling there were no other trees around - hence the multiple lower limbs.
Patrick just returned from his elk hunting trip on Afognak. The pictures make it look beautiful, but it rained every day! Some serious wind too (both on the boat and outside). They camped on Jim Eufemio's 47 foot long seiner, and hiked the mountains by day. This is a view over Foul Bay, on the first day it finally cleared off. If you look closely in the foreground you can see the Alpha Centuri at anchor.
Nora enjoyed the 12 hour ferry ride from Homer to Kodiak. She emptied the contents of her moms bag onto the bunk in the cabin. Then she proceeded to sort and stack the contents from one side of the bunk to the other. It provided hours of entertainment! She has her dads tendencies for sorting and organizing. OCD???
Zoya recently returned from her trip to the Kenai Peninsula and Anchorage. She and Nora took her Subaru over on the 'Trusty Tusty' and visited friends and relatives in Homer, Anchorage, and Seward. Great scenery on the way. This one is of fall colors on the Kenai River.
Friday, October 06, 2006
Glorious sunrise over Mill Bay. The sun is no longer rising out of the ocean. As winter approaches it rises further and further to the south east. These days it comes up out of the trees on Spruce Cape. Zoya and Nora are off to Homer and Anchorage for the week. Zoya took her car over on the ferry. I am holding the fort down with Roxy Dog until I go off elk hunting this weekend. Roxy and Patrick miss Zoya and Nora.
Monday, October 02, 2006
Brian and Ray scan the hillsides for deer. It was a cold day and they found the deer on a sunny, warm, south-facing slope. They came home with about 80 pounds of deer meat. Much easier to carry a deer a long way when it is split between three people!