Vitus Bering’s Russian expedition of 1741 opened Prince William Sound to the western world. Subsequent expeditions by Spanish, British and the Spanish have all contributed to the naming of numerous bays and islands.
Fur, gold, timber and fish have all fueled economic booms in the sound which has now become a major port for the shipment of Alaskan oil.
The 100,000 square miles of Prince William Sound are full of deep fjords and mountains that thrust from the sea to their highest point on Mt. Marcus Baker at 13,250 feet.
Waters of the sound are protected by a series of islands that provide a protective barrier from Pacific Ocean swells. This 3,500 mile-long coastline forms a boundary to the worlds northern most temperate rain forest.
Three million acres of forest are home to western hemlock, white spruce and Sitka spruce. Much of the sound belongs to the Chugach National Forest, (https://www.fs.usda.gov/chugach/) the nations second largest national forest.
Prince William Sound is home to rich salmon fisheries. 5 hatcheries add to already abundant runs of sockeye (red salmon), pink salmon, coho (silver salmon), chinook (king salmon) and chum salmon. Other fisheries include halibut, cod, snapper and shrimp. Shorelines are filled with clams and mussels excellent for eating. Deeper waters are home to Dalls propose, orcas and otter.
Spring brings the largest gathering of shore birds in the world to PWS. Thousands of Canada geese, snow geese, swans and cranes funnel thought the sound en route to northern breeding grounds. when the fish are running bald eagles share the space with bear and fishermen.
"Thank you, to you and Nancy, for taking such good care of all of us on the Oystercatcher trip! I had such a wonderful time and even felt 'pampered' with all the extra effort from both of you. It was really nice to see the beauty of AK from land and water - thanks for the short hikes, kayaking, bonfire, and of course, Marshall's doggy presence!"Gwen
"Thank you for a great trip and memories that our family will cherish forever. It in many ways is a perfect family trip - No TV or telephone just great scenery and family time together! My dad is still talking about it to anybody that will listen! Both you and Linda were exceptional hosts - we felt safe, lots of adventures and we had customized itineraries. Linda is a great cook and you a wonderful captain. We love the Babkin! We did it all at a pace where we could enjoy the process. These days few things live up to expectations - our trip exceeded it!"Paige
Photo credits: Linda Bassett, Tim Bowman, Alex Davis, John Durham, Alexandra von Wichman, Brad von Wichman