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Outdoors

Courtesy of the Alaska State Library Historical Collections,ASL-Craig-3
A crewman aboard the vessel Hedgeland works to dump a brail of herring in Craig in the early 1900s.

Herring search spans millennia

Southeast Alaska's Pacific herring populations seem to be on the rebound, but even in fisheries regarded as healthy, some contend herring are significantly depleted from historical levels indicated by archaeological records and cultural memory.

by MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

482-pound halibut caught near Glacier Bay

GUSTAVUS - A Southern California man caught a giant Pacific halibut near Gustavus last week that rivals the sportfishing world record.
ANDY MARTIN

On the Trails: Ralston Island

On a recent morning, friends and I arrived at the wide beach on Ralston Island with a following breeze and set out to explore. The trail marked on old topographic maps proved hard to find, but a maze of deer trails made it easy to move...
Mary Willson

What's in Bloom: Masterwort

Masterwort, Astrantia major, is one of the workhorses of Juneau's summer gardens. This carefree, low maintenance member of the carrot family blooms continuously from high summer into fall with white flowers.
MERRILL JENSEN

An Alaskan Light

"The land was ours before we were the land's." -Robert Frost, "The Gift Outright" A Northeasterner born and bred, I moved west in 1990, to a small college town in the Columbia Basin, and I was not immediately enamored with the West.

Mt. Roberts Saturday Wild Walk

The next Audubon Society Saturday Wild Walk will be held from 8:15 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday. Participants are to meet at the Mount Roberts Tram. Tram tickets can be purchased from JAS for a nonprofit, local rate of $7 per person.

Sport fish report for the week of July 7

King salmon Hatchery king salmon fishing continued to be good for both marine boat anglers and shore based anglers in the immediate Juneau area. The local areas where anglers are having luck are: Auke Bay, North Douglas, Shelter Island and...

Wild Shots

The Empire Outdoors page is looking for superb images of Alaska's wildlife, scenery or plant life. Send your photos to outdoors@juneauempire.com.

Articles from the Outdoors section archive

Friday, July 11, 2014

On the Trails: Ralston Island

On a recent morning, friends and I arrived at the wide beach on Ralston Island with a following breeze and set out to explore. The trail marked on old topographic maps proved hard to find, but a ...
By Mary Willson

482-pound halibut caught near Glacier Bay

GUSTAVUS - A Southern California man caught a giant Pacific halibut near Gustavus last week that rivals the sportfishing world record.
By ANDY MARTIN

Herring search spans millennia

Southeast Alaska's Pacific herring populations seem to be on the rebound, but even in fisheries regarded as healthy, some contend herring are significantly depleted from historical levels ...
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

What's in Bloom: Masterwort

Masterwort, Astrantia major, is one of the workhorses of Juneau's summer gardens. This carefree, low maintenance member of the carrot family blooms continuously from high summer into fall with ...
By MERRILL JENSEN

Wild Shots

The Empire Outdoors page is looking for superb images of Alaska's wildlife, scenery or plant life. Send your photos to outdoors@juneauempire.com.

Sport fish report for the week of July 7

King salmon Hatchery king salmon fishing continued to be good for both marine boat anglers and shore based anglers in the immediate Juneau area. The local areas where anglers are having luck are: ...

An Alaskan Light

"The land was ours before we were the land's." -Robert Frost, "The Gift Outright" A Northeasterner born and bred, I moved west in 1990, to a small college town in the Columbia Basin, and I was not ...

Mt. Roberts Saturday Wild Walk

The next Audubon Society Saturday Wild Walk will be held from 8:15 a.m. to 11 a.m. Saturday. Participants are to meet at the Mount Roberts Tram. Tram tickets can be purchased from JAS for a ...

Friday, July 4, 2014

Sitka and Angoon Shoreline II public meetings

SITKA - Officials with the Tongass National Forest are inviting the public to attend meetings and submit comments on managing outfitters and guides on the Admiralty National Monument, Hoonah, ...

Alaska Geospatial Council to begin coordinating state geospatial efforts

ANCHORAGE - Governor Sean Parnell has signed a Memorandum of Agreement establishing the Alaska Geospatial Council (AGC) and charging it with coordinating efforts involving geospatial data ...

NPS announced temporary closure due to nesting birds

The superintendent of Glacier Bay, Philip Hooge, announced the closure of a small island south of Leland Island to protect a high concentration of nesting seabirds. The closure is in effect from ...

Mendenhall Lake campers warned to properly secure food from foraging bears

JUNEAU - Several campers at the Mendenhall Lake Campground have recently learned that illegally storing food in their tents is an irresistible attraction for bears - and have the shredded tents to ...

Outdoor Recreational Trails Advisory Board recruiting for board opening

ANCHORAGE - The Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation is seeking candidates to fill an open board position representing northwestern Alaska on the Outdoor Recreational Trails Advisory Board.

Coast Guard encourages safety for Alaska boaters during Independence Day celebration

As Independence Day weekend begins, the Coast Guard 17th District urges Alaskan boaters to keep safe.

State reminds residents of Fourth of July Fire prevention

Recreational activities during the Fourth of July weekend frequently ignite wildfires, according to a release from the State of Alaska this week.

Native Plant Conservation MOU Renewed in Coordination with Western Governors' Association

The Bureau of Land Management hosted the 2014 Seed Conference this week, to celebrate 20 years of public-private partnerships for native plant conservation.

Bird Bits: Tidbits about the great blue heron

Come spring, being a great blue heron parent means that both the male and female are into child rearing for the long haul. The male builds or refurbishes an existing flat nest of sticks.
By PATRICIA WHERRY

What's in Bloom: Primula vialii

One of our summer blooming primroses, Primula vialii, is also one of the most captivating ones grown at the Jensen-Olson Arboretum in the national Primula collection, recognized by the North ...
By MERRILL JENSEN

Sport fish report for the week of June 30

King salmon Hatchery king salmon fishing continued to be good for both marine boat anglers and shore based anglers in the immediate Juneau area, and strong numbers of king salmon supported high ...

Herring return to Auke Bay

By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

Live cam shows Arctic snowy owl, chicks

ANCHORAGE - A high-definition camera trained on a burrow near the nation's northernmost city is allowing researchers and any bird viewer with an Internet connection an unfettered view into the ...
By MARK THIESSEN

Friday, June 27, 2014

Unmanned aircraft prohibited in America's National Parks

National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis signed a policy memorandum this week that directs superintendents nationwide to prohibit launching, landing or operating unmanned aircraft on ...

Federal Subsistence Harvest of Wildlife Regulations Book Now Available

Printed copies of the July 1,2014 to June 30, 2016 Federal Subsistence Management Regulations for the Harvest of Wildlife on Federal Public Lands in Alaska book are now available.

Running around Douglas Island

Around the beginning of June, Bryce Iverson and Tristan Knutson-Lombardo ran around Douglas Island. "We did the entire island," Iverson wrote in an email. "(We) started with a 14-mile road run and ...

Chinook News provides statewide perspective on major issues surrounding Chinook salmon in Alaska

"Chinook salmon are iconic to Alaska and its people and have been one of our most valuable resources for thousands of years," said Cora Campbell, commissioner of the Alaska Department of Fish and ...

Sport fish report for the week of June 23

King salmon Hatchery king salmon fishing continues to produce fish for both marine boat anglers and shore based anglers. The local areas where anglers are having luck are: Auke Bay, Fritz Cove, ...

Bird Bits: The demanding fledgling

Fledgling common ravens are everywhere! "Caw, caw, caw, caw … feed me, feed me, feed me," they seem to say. The hefty teenagers are out of the nest, but they are still pressing demands on their ...
By PATRICIA WHERRY

Off the Beaten Path: The bears, wolves of Kupreanof Island

The morning dawned clear on the Horn Cliffs that led toward Thomas Bay, the setting for Harry D. Colp's iconic narrative "The Strangest Story Ever Told.
By BJORN DIHLE

From a glacial river to a salmon stream?

Southeast Alaska's watersheds are changing quickly, and researchers are working to figure out how, why, and what those changes mean.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

Wild Shots

The Empire Outdoors page is looking for superb images of Alaska's wildlife, scenery or plant life. Send your photos to outdoors@juneauempire.com.

What's in Bloom: Herbaceous peonies

Herbaceous peonies, scientifically known as Paeonia sp., are the aristocrats of the gardening world. These large-flowered, long-lived plants (often easily outliving their original planters) should ...
By MERRILL JENSEN

Friday, June 20, 2014

Bird Bits: The invisible bird

In the top of a cottonwood, a slender bird stretched a silhouetted wing and leg. That's it. That's all I saw. The gray bird, a variation of the "little brown job," was identified for me by Mary ...
By PATRICIA WHERRY

Fish success

Most people know False Outer Point is a good place to fish for king salmon in late April and May. What they don't know is why. Bill Heard, a retired scientist with NOAA, has a theory that answers ...
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

What's in Bloom: Iris 'Gracchus'

Iris "Gracchus" - this is a very old cultivar of iris that was first introduced to cultivation in Europe in 1884.
By MERRILL JENSEN

On the Trails: Happy endings

I hang out near the Mendenhall glacier quite often and, as the season progresses, I get to see many interesting things. Sometimes the observations make a nice story. Here are two little stories ...
By Mary Willson

MOTHER DUCK

Mother duck and her ducklings, three Needed to cross the road, you see To reach the pond with the bright clear water And the tasty weeds, and the silly otter.
By LINDA SHAW

Off the Beaten Path: Exploring the Stikine Delta by kayak, foot

This spring I attended the Little Norway Festival in Petersburg. It seemed remarkably tame in comparison to the shenanigans I'd experienced there two years prior. Maybe it was me - perhaps I've ...
By BJORN DIHLE

Alaska Science Forum: Number of Alaska glaciers is everchanging

A glaciologist once wrote that the number of glaciers in Alaska estimated at (greater than) 100,000. That fuzzy number, perhaps written in passive voice for a reason, might be correct. But it ...
By NED ROZELL

Crystal, Glacier and Moraine lakes open to king salmon fishing

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game announced that Glacier, Moraine and Crystal lakes will open to king salmon fishing from June 18, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2014. The bag and possession limit ...

Sport fish report for the week of June 16

King salmon Hatchery king salmon fishing has improved for shoreline and marine boat anglers as increasing numbers of fish return to the Terminal Harvest Area around Juneau.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Comments period extended for Heintlzman Ridge peak name proposal

The U.S. Board of Geographic Names, which has authority to name geographic features for federal use, has received two proposals to name the same peak on Heintlzman Ridge. The area to be named is a ...

Friday, June 13, 2014

Sport fish report for the week of June 9

King salmon Although fewer king salmon were harvested in the Juneau area this week compared to last, anglers continued to bring king salmon back to Juneau area docks.

ADF&G kicks off Alaskans Afield, an outdoor class series

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has a new series of courses aimed at getting families outside. Dubbed Alaskans Afield, these summer classes are a way to provide fun, safe, hands-on learning ...

No permits to be issued on Situk for king salmon

Yakutat District Ranger Lee Benson has announced that he is acting immediately to protect chinook salmon in the Situk River near Yakutat.

U.S. Forest Service seeking candidates for new positions

The U.S. Forest Service is inviting a broad range of candidates as it seeks to fill two key positions in the Alaska Regional Office in Juneau.

Public invited to review draft Haines Highway scenic byway interpretive plan

The Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation and the Scenic Byways program of the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities invite the public to review the draft Haines Highway ...

Nowhere left but North

The final member of "A Trip South," a group of Juneau-raised friends traveling from Juneau to Ushuaia, Argentina, the southernmost road-accessible town in South America, has reached the end of the ...
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

On the Trails: Bear watching in spring

By early June, the cottonwood seed pods are fat with maturing seeds, and that's when local bears (and porcupines) love to eat them.
By Mary Willson

A Trip South: The final pass

I'm in my tent on the last night of A Trip South, camped out front of the base of Cerro Castor Ski Center, the place that looks like it's going to bring me lots of smiles this winter. That is, as ...
By KANAAN BAUSLER

What's in Bloom: Himalayan blue poppy

Here in Juneau we are fortunate enough to live where Meconopsis 'Lingholm', the Himalayan blue poppy, thrives. Juneau's climate mimics their rain-soaked, native habitat on the sub-alpine slopes ...
By MERRILL JENSEN

Friday, June 6, 2014

Dog mauling, encounters on trails remind hikers to be cautious

In the last month or so, bears have begun to emerge from their dens, munch on grass, and, occasionally stray a little too close to people and their dogs.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

What's in Bloom: Blue camas

Small camas or blue camas, scientifically known as Camassia quamash, is an outstanding bulb native to western North America.
By MERRILL JENSEN

ADF&G: Bear situation 'very serious' near Auke Rec

A frequently sighted black bear sow and her three cubs out near Auke Recreation Area may be popular, but that fame is leading nowhere good for the bears.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

On the Trails: Prowling the intertidal

I find it great fun to go out on a minus tide and prowl along the exposed intertidal zone. It's a bit like a treasure hunt, seeing how many different kinds of invertebrates and little fishes I can ...
By Mary Willson

Off the Beaten Path: Home in the wilderness

I used to think that much of Southeast Alaska was wilderness, distinctly separate from the lives of the people living in the towns, villages and cities that dot the coastline.
By BJORN DIHLE

Photo: The Finish Line

The final member of A Trip South completed the journey from Juneau to the southern-most tip of South America this month - the finish line in Tierra del Fuego.

Historic preservation grants now available

The Office of History and Archaeology is accepting applications for grants to assist with rehabilitating, restoring, stabilizing or planning for preserving historic buildings and structures.

Sport fish report for the week of May 27

SPRING KING SALMON This past week's king salmon fishing continued to be good in the Juneau area. Average daily harvest and catch rates as well as number of anglers fishing in North Douglas at ...

Whale waters update for Glacier Bay

Acting Superintendent Chris Pergiel announced Wednesday that the 13-knot vessel speed limit in lower Glacier Bay will be raised to 20 knots through the water due to a decrease in the number of ...

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