Day 6: Third Day Out. Wednesday, June 21, 2006

After another night of rain, it was still raining this morning. I don't think we have been here a single day that it did not rain at some point. I rose early to get things ready for the day; prepare water, fix breakfast, and pack a lunch. Lots of preparation goes on every morning before we can make our trek to Mikfik. Every morning also brings the dilemma of which gear to haul. Rain gear, warm layers, camera gear, how much water, etc. are all choices based on success or lack thereof on the preceding day.

Good weather today didn’t look promising. Rain was still falling, and in another hour we planned to begin our trek to Mikfik creek. When the time came for us to depart, it was still raining. I had dressed a little lighter than I did yesterday and found myself wishing for some of the weather we had yesterday. I feared it would rain all day.

Rain, Rain, and More Rain

Thirty minutes into our hike and it was obvious that the rain was not going to stop falling. Just wearing my Gore-Tex ® it looked like I would be getting soaked again. With a blowing wind, the rain doesn’t subside. Despite seeing several bears on the flats, there wasn’t much activity going on so far this morning.

We decided to walk up to the falls to see if there were any fish in the pool just above the falls. It was a tough hike, and along the way the mosquitoes were out in full force. Despite our donning head nets and bug dope to keep the pests away, the hungry blood-suckers were determined to get us. We arrived at the falls to discover there were neither bears nor fish so there, we took our lunch break and some among us took a little nap in the rain.

After our break, we headed on back down towards the sedge flats to see if there were any more bears. Once there we saw just a few bears, but it was still raining. Although it is nice to watch bears in the rain, I would rather photograph them. Since there was too much rain for me to take out my camera, I chose to just watch. We hung out at a log jam to sit and watch what the bears were doing.

Foxy Lady?

A red fox appeared and approached us. Though I didn’t have my camera ready, several in the group were able to get a nice shot of this fox. It was neat to see fauna other than bears. I wish I could have gotten a few shots of the fox but, oh well… that is how it goes sometimes. We waited around for several more hours in the rain before we decided to head back to camp. The long hike in the rain took its toll, soaking and tiring everyone.

Back at camp, coats, socks, shirts, and other clothes were hung everywhere to get dry. By now, most of us were accustomed to the drill of drying out our belongings every day. We’re grateful for the sauna because it is not only great for a bath, but also for drying out our wet gear. We knew to get the sauna fired up immediately to put it to task. Tomorrow, Kevin will return to Homer and we will join him on the following day.