Categorie archief: Reisverslagen

Kaktovik, part 2.

It is now the beginning of September and the polar bears are present in large numbers around the island. The largest numbers can be found on the gravel bank close to the island. The assessment of endangered species does not seem in place here. We have never seen so many bears so close together before. In some places on the gravel bank one can see up to 8 bears together. Mothers with cubs, males and juveniles mingling with each other. Seemingly, things are very peaceful. We do not see any fighting; an occasional snarl between them seems to be enough to maintain a proper hierarchy. They have all left the large polar ice field and have made the crossing to the small Barter Island, which lies close to the mainland of Alaska.


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Kaktovik, part 1

Oh Island close to Ice
Eternal wilderness Paradise
Just to feel how the edge of the world
Touches the frozen history pearls
Kaktovik brings you to your senses.

If you, being on the edge of the stressed western civilization, are dropped in a village on Barter Island, an island off Alaska, which lies in the vast Arctic Ocean, start contemplating immediately.


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Kakatovik, deel 2.

Het is nu begin september en de poolberen zijn in grote getale rondom het eiland aanwezig. De grootste concentratie bevindt zich op de gravel bank vlak voor het eiland. De vaststelling tot bedreigde diersoort lijkt hier niet op zijn plaats. Wij hebben nog nooit zoveel beren zo dicht bij elkaar gezien. Op sommige plekken van de gravelbank zie je wel 8 beren tegelijk. Moeders met cubs, mannetjes en juveniles dwars door elkaar heen. Ogenschijnlijk gaat het er vreedzaam aan toe. Gevechten zien wij niet; alleen af en toe een grote mond open doen naar elkaar schijnt voldoende te zijn om de juiste hiërarchie te kunnen handhaven.
Allen hebben het
grote poolijsveld verlaten en de oversteek gemaakt naar het kleine Barter Island, dat vlak voor het vasteland van Alaska ligt.


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Kaktovik, deel 1

Oh Island close to Ice
Eternal wilderness Paradise
Just to feel how the edge of the world
Touches the frozen history pearls

Kaktovik brengt je tot bezinning.
Als je,aan de rand van de gestreste westerse beschaving, wordt gedropt in een dorp op Barter Island, een eiland van Alaska, dat ligt in de onmetelijke Artic Ocean, start het bezinnen onmiddellijk.


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Denali Highway

Denali Highway

If there was ever a road through paradise then it could have been the Denali Highway. There are no roads in paradise. People were then still a part of nature. Where there is a road nature disappears.

 
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Denali

As a visitor of Alaska, a visit to the National Park “Denali” is a must. With a surface area of 6 million acres (93×87 miles) this park is a nature paradise which surrounds the highest mountain of North America: the Mount McKinley. This 6200 m high giant dominates the Alaska Range.

Flanked by the Mount Forakker (5300 m) and the Mount Hunter (4400 m) this section is the solid foundation for the many large glaciers that stride to reach the plateaus from the mountain range. Many rivers originate on the flanks of this massif and flow along the northern side via the plateaus to the lower situated Yukon Flats. From there, via the Yukon, they eventually end up in the Bering Sea.

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Seward

SewardOn the south coast of Alaska, in the mountainous region of the Kenai Peninsula lies Seward. It is surrounded by high mountainsides and in good weather conditions is reflected as a mirror image in a blue bay. It is both a fishing port as well as a tourist attraction and has a sizeable nature and wildlife centre.

The bay is part of the Resurrection Bay, a fjord where the rock formations overwhelmingly dominate, where tidewater glaciers slide into the sea and where the wildlife is present in all its glory.

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The Mount McKinley

Mc KinleyThe Mount McKinley, the Sun King and the cranes

Alaska had a bad spring and even a worse summer.  When we arrived in July we heard from the Alaskans that the weather had never been so bad. 38 days of continual rain had severely disheartened them. We put them at ease.  We brought the good weather with us from Holland, so it can only get better. Our bold statement worked.

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Landscapes

Chulitna River

Once again we find ourselves fully emerged in natures wilderness. The tripods, with cameras attached, firmly mounted in the ground piercing right through all the growth in its path. Within a circumference of 25 miles we see centuries of nature’s landscapes of mountains, rivers, high plains, forests and endless snow. The silence is breathtaking, the surroundings cleansing the eyes, the vastness and colourful contours of the landscape bringing with it an overwhelming feeling of inner peace. We let ourselves be taken in by this everlasting wondrous moment, this propulsive moment of nature that no one can stop.

This wondrous feeling of being a part of natures own engulfs us again and again while on our Alaskan travels. These occurrences mostly happen when we least expect them. The morning glory and the setting sun play a big part in these landscape visions. The bad weather conditions with its fierce cloud formation hanging above the water are making us shiver. Not only the weather conditions cause this, but also the overwhelming impressions that the combination of weather and landscapes leave behind.
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Bears in the wilderness of Alaska

Vissende beerOnce again, my wife Rika, my brother in-law Piet and I are on the verge of donning our casual attire. We are leaving behind the hysterical pressures, the interferences, the television addictions, the pettiness, the financial worries, and the decadence of the western civilization behind, and are going to put on our paradisiacal costume.

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