July 21, 2011

Please join me

There is nothing like returning
to a place that remains unchanged
to find the ways in which you
yourself have altered. ~Nelson Mandela

Earlier this month, my friend Shanna, her daughter Brook and I did a little exploring on the Kenai Peninsula, where I live.  I snapped some whimsical photos including wild flowers and wanted to share a July day in the life of an Alaskan.  This little journey was one I hadn't taken for 23 years.  It was good to go back.  I hope you enjoy these and would love to hear what you think!

Leaving my home in Nikiski, we headed to Homer to catch the Danny J Ferry to Halibut Cove.  It takes 2 hours to get there.  If you click on the links, you can read about the fascinating history of this lovely area.
Boarding the Danny J at the Homer Harbor

Seabirds near Gull Island, Kachemak Bay
Seabirds included gulls, terns, pelicans, cormorants, gannets and puffins

You can watch the birds via a real time web cam HERE!

 It was a short cruise across the bay, and then we approached the cove.   

Private homes and lodges

Cute bungalows

The boat docked and we went ashore.  Walking around the boardwalk we took in the scenery and foliage.  Leaning over the boardwalk rail, we spotted a bunch of algae floating on top of the water.  Looking at the photo below, you may have an initial response of  surprise seeing what looks like a sheen of oil surrounding the algae.  It is more than what it appears to be!  It is actually a rich soup of plant nutrients, microscopic algae and swarms of microscopic animals resting in the shallow waters of the slough. I think it was magical!

Kelp heart

View from higher ground

Shasta Daisy, Alaskan-style
Leucanthemum x superbum
Columbine growing out of the side of the cliff

Assorted floats hanging from tree branches

More daisies

Beautiful tile work on walkway

Alaskan jungle!

Notice the hillside in the distance?  It was covered with healthy spruce trees until the bark beetles got them.  Many dead trees were removed, hopefully the beetles have moved on, and seedlings are growing everywhere.

Pretty little yellow flowers - I don't know what they are....
Back to Homer

Next stop

It's just not a visit to Homer without a stop at the Bear Creek Winery Here are a few photos I took of the grounds there.
Random art in the walkway

Koi pond
Sometimes there are real bears. Really.

Alaska Rules!

Man-made waterfall.  The plants at the bottom are fireweed.  When they bloom they look like this: 
Fireweed Epilobium angustifolium
from the evening primrose family

But it's not time yet.  When they begin to bloom, its a sign that summer is nearing an end.  I will be showing your more fireweed later ...hopefully much later! 

There is an eternal landscape, a geography of the soul;
we search for its outlines all our lives. ~Josephine Hart

 Glad you could come away with me for a bit.  Have a lovely weekend!


  1. wow...what a wonderful place! I wish I could be there to see it in person!!! thanks so much for sharing this!
    thanks for linking in this week. I am always in awe of all the different flowers everyone flaunts. It is a pleasure to tour and see all the gorgeous blooms...and I always enjoy stopping by here! I hope you will link in again soon!
    ¸.•´¸.•*¨) ¸.•*¨)
    (¸.•´ (¸.•´ .•´ ¸¸.•¨¯`•.

  2. Thanks for the of a day in Alaska! Your pictures are beautiful. When you wrote you were going on a ferry, I expected something much bigger! But the one in the picture is much more interesting than what I pictured in my mind. I love the wild flowers, especially the Shasta Daisies - white against the green -- lovely! And the cute cottages! I'm assuming those are fishing lodges? Thanks again for sharing your pics. I can't wait to see more next Friday!

  3. Such a beautiful place, thank you so much for taking us on your journey with you...The bear in the log was a little scary though lol.

    Thank you so much for your comments and encouragement this week...I did visit your sisters blog and found it wonderfully uplifting and will be returning to enjoy her future posts.

    I hope you are doing well and enjoying your warm weather.

    Blessings Kelsie