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Outdoors

Klas Stolpe | Juneau Empire
Life-long fisherman Clyde Curry (center) and crewmen Austin Parr and Aaron Phillips watch as pink salmon are unloaded from the hold of the salmon seiner F/V JEAN C at the Icicle Seafoods plant in Petersburg in this 2008 photo. Pink salmon (humpys) will be returning to Southeast Alaska waters in high numbers again this season according to Alaska Department of Fish and Game biologists.

Pinks predicted to carry season, again

In 2013, pink salmon returns in Southeast Alaska broke records, leading commercial fishermen to catch more than 100 million salmon from all five species for the first time ever in the region.

by MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

Celebrate Earth Day at the glacier

The U.S. Forest Service is hosting a community Earth Day celebration on Saturday, April 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center.

My enemy: the buzz of the bird

The yellow house. It was beautiful. Way out Rink Creek in Gustavus. As if Gustavus isn't small enough as is, I lived seven miles outside the center of town. In the winters we were isolated down the long dirt road.
STEPHANIE SHOR

On the Trails: Skunk cabbage and its sex change abilities

Decent weather in early April encouraged several low-elevation jaunts. The Parks and Recreation hikers went to the rock peninsula on the west side of Mendenhall Lake, stopping for lunch amid a fine display of purple mountain saxifrage.
Mary Willson

Alaskans can help answer 'Where have all the rusty blackbirds gone?'

From April 11 through May 31, Alaskans can use their binoculars to help birds - by reporting sightings of rusty blackbirds for the Rusty Blackbird Spring Migration Blitz. This is the second year of a three-year project.

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.

Thane Road Campground opens for the season

JUNEAU - Thane Road Campground opened this week, according to a release from the City and Borough of Juneau Parks and Recreation Department. The campground is located 1.5 miles south of downtown Juneau on the east side of Thane Road.

Summer internships available with Alaska USFS

JUNEAU - The USDA Forest Service has announced in a press release this week two internship opportunities in natural resource management.

Youth corps, USFS to offer paid summer positions

JUNEAU - Youth between 15-18 are encouraged to take advantage of a four-week opportunity this summer in Angoon or Ketchikan. The Youth Conservation Corps, in partnership with the U.S.

Articles from the Outdoors section archive

Friday, April 17, 2015

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.

My enemy: the buzz of the bird

The yellow house. It was beautiful. Way out Rink Creek in Gustavus. As if Gustavus isn't small enough as is, I lived seven miles outside the center of town. In the winters we were isolated down ...
By STEPHANIE SHOR

Pinks predicted to carry season, again

In 2013, pink salmon returns in Southeast Alaska broke records, leading commercial fishermen to catch more than 100 million salmon from all five species for the first time ever in the region.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

On the Trails: Skunk cabbage and its sex change abilities

Decent weather in early April encouraged several low-elevation jaunts. The Parks and Recreation hikers went to the rock peninsula on the west side of Mendenhall Lake, stopping for lunch amid a ...
By Mary Willson

Celebrate Earth Day at the glacier

The U.S. Forest Service is hosting a community Earth Day celebration on Saturday, April 18 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center.

Summer internships available with Alaska USFS

JUNEAU - The USDA Forest Service has announced in a press release this week two internship opportunities in natural resource management.

Youth corps, USFS to offer paid summer positions

JUNEAU - Youth between 15-18 are encouraged to take advantage of a four-week opportunity this summer in Angoon or Ketchikan. The Youth Conservation Corps, in partnership with the U.S.

Thane Road Campground opens for the season

JUNEAU - Thane Road Campground opened this week, according to a release from the City and Borough of Juneau Parks and Recreation Department. The campground is located 1.5 miles south of downtown ...

Alaskans can help answer 'Where have all the rusty blackbirds gone?'

From April 11 through May 31, Alaskans can use their binoculars to help birds - by reporting sightings of rusty blackbirds for the Rusty Blackbird Spring Migration Blitz. This is the second year ...

Friday, April 10, 2015

Wild and weird: Small mammals in Southeast

Black bears in Interior Alaska are more closely related to their counterparts in the Lower 48 than in Southeast Alaska. A certain mouse that lives near Yakutat, Haines and Ketchikan - but not ...
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

Alaska Science Forum: Creepy crawlies of the north aren't from around here

Under its own power, an earthworm gains about 30 feet of new territory each year. But that does not help explain how worms got to Alaska. "It's almost geologically slow," Matt Bowser, said of the ...
By NED ROZELL

Off the Beaten Path: Transboundary mining efforts are just another gold rush scam

The history of gold rushes has no shortage of scams.
By BJORN DIHLE

Yellow cedar under consideration for endangered species protection

ANCHORAGE - An iconic Alaska tree may warrant protection as a threatened or endangered species due to climate warming, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Thursday.
By Dan Joling

What's in Bloom: Fumewort

Another fumewort, Corydalis solida 'Beth Evens' shows the dark pink end of the spectrum of this species. C. solida is native to the shady woods of north-central Europe and into central Asia.
By MERRILL JENSEN

Gov. declares April 11-17 as 'Wildland Fire Prevention and Preparedness Week'

In a press release this week from the Department of Natural Resources, Gov. Bill Walker has proclaimed April 11-17 "Wildland Fire Prevention and Preparedness Week," as part of a multi-agency ...

Auke Lake boat launch opens for the season

JUNEAU - Staff from the City and Borough of Juneau Parks & Recreation Department have installed seasonal regulatory buoys in Auke Lake, and the Auke Lake Boat Launch is now open to the public, ...

Tlaxsatanjín now official name of peak on Heintzelman

JUNEAU - The U.S. Board of Geographic Names has approved the official naming of a peak on Heintzelman Ridge to be called by its historical Tlingit name Tlaxsatanjín, meaning "Idle Hands" or "Hands ...

Wildlife Society to honor Flynn, Larsen with lifetime achievement awards

The Alaska Chapter of Wildlife Society will meet from April 13-17 in Juneau at the Juneau Arts and Culture Center, according to a press release this week from the society. A wide variety of ...

Subsistent hunters exempt from Federal duck stamp requirements, for now

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service this week announced an interim policy that implements a new law exempting qualified Alaska subsistence hunters from the requirement to possess a Federal Duck ...

Chef at the Market now accepting applications from Alaska chefs

PALMER - The Chef at the Market program is currently accepting applications from Alaska chefs interested in providing cooking demonstrations during the 2015 farmers market season.

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.

Friday, April 3, 2015

Fishing Gastineau Channel the topic for fly fishing meeting

The public is invited to the Wednesday, April 8 meeting of the Raincountry Flyfishers beginning at 7 p.m. in the Thunder Mountain High School library. Kayla Roys, of Alaska Flyfishing Goods, will ...

Gov reminds Alaskans to be 'Bear Aware'

Gov. Bill Walker has proclaimed April "Bear Awareness Month" and with many parts of Alaska experiencing unseasonably warm temperatures, bears will be emerging from their dens at any time.

Marine mammal guide aims to make identification easy

Off the Hawaiian coast, a spray of water might catch an onlooker's eye. It might be a Fraser's dolphin, or is it a short-beaked common dolphin? The answer can be found in the latest field guide ...

Purchase hunting, fishing tags online

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has launched a new online store, according to a press release, on which the public can purchase sport fishing and hunting licenses, commercial crewmember ...

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.

Off the Beaten Path: In the shadow of Vitus Bering, part II

Editor's note: This is the second installment of a two-part series about Vitus Bering's last voyage and the author's ski traverse from Kluane Lake to Yakutat. Vitus Bering and the men of the ...
By BJORN DIHLE

What's in Bloom: Purple Bird

Corydalis solida, also known as "Purple Bird," has the unusual common name of fumewort that comes from Middle English meaning "vapor plant".
By MERRILL JENSEN

Mack: Safety before profits, when it comes to transboundary mines

Eight months ago, Jacinda Mack watched as the Mount Polley dam failure released a flood of toxic water and tailings into the Quesnel Lake watershed.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

On the Trails: Strolling in the March sunshine

After a deluge in late March, the sun showed itself, prompting residents to enjoy some serious basking. Some baskers took the lizard approach: finding a spot out of the wind and relaxing.
By Mary Willson

Alaska Science Forum: Citizen science, social media meets the aurora

A scientist named Victor Hessler once made an aurora detector by driving two metal rods in the ground a few hundred feet apart and stringing a wire between them. When voltage changed along the ...
By NED ROZELL

Friday, March 27, 2015

Little oil, no impact: Officials say Auke Bay unfazed by Feb. 22 spill

At this point it looks like there are no lasting negative effects in Auke Bay from the Feb. 22 Statter Harbor oil spill, say National Oceanic and Atmospheric Admistration and Coast Guard officials.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

Off the Beaten Path: In the shadow of Vitus Bering, part I

Editor's note: This is the first of a two-part installment on Vitus Bering's last voyage and the author's ski traverse from Kluane Lake to Yakutat. Next week's Off the Beaten Path will conclude ...
By BJORN DIHLE

Becoming outdoorsy

It's your chance to learn to tie flies, pack rafts, and generally get comfortable with all things outdoors.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

What's in Bloom: Ruby giant

One early spring riser is the Ruby Giant, crocus tommasinianus, which often sends its blossoms up through the snow and is commonly referred to as snow crocus.
By MERRILL JENSEN

On the Trails: As winter falls away, bears, hooters, mountain goats appear again

The days grow longer and we all start wishing that spring would be here NOW! Indeed, spring is slowly, slowly springing. Perhaps it got a bit confused by the lack of a real winter? Or perhaps we ...
By Mary Willson

Learn how to black bear hunt

The Alaska Department of Fish and Game will soon begin its spring and summer Alaskans Afield classes, meant to familiarize Alaskans with anything from surviving in the wilderness to harvesting a deer.

Lecture: Why are chinook declining?

The Territorial Sportsmen on April 2 will host a free informational event on the decline and management of chinook salmon. The evening will be focused on increasing public awareness about the ...

Alaska Science Forum: Catching a lake as it became land

If a lake drains on top of the world, will anyone hear it? Ben Jones and Chris Arp did. The Anchorage- and Fairbanks-based scientists placed sensors in a bathtub-shaped lake on Alaska's northern ...
By NED ROZELL

Final Fireside chat shows Juneau in a new way

Discovery Southeast naturalist Richard Carstensen this evening, Friday, March 27 will show audiences at this season's final Fireside Lecture a new way to see Juneau.

GCI, Eaglecrest to host 'Day on the Mountain' Saturday

The public is invited to a day on Juneau's local ski hill, complete with entertainment, activities and door prizes, sponsored by GCI. Though the lifts will be closed, the free event will run from ...

Wildlife Wednesday: Small mammals

The Southeast Chapter of Alaska Wildlife Alliance on April 1 will offer the last talk in its winter series. Riley Woodford of the Alaska Department of Fish and Game will speak about small mammals ...

Registration now open for youth outdoor camp

Registration is now available for the AK Experience: Alaska Skills and Adventure Camp. Youth ages 11-18 from all of Southeast Alaska are invited to attend the five-day outdoor residential camp ...

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.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

On the Fly: Be prepared to rip some lips this spring

Generally speaking, the pursuit of anadromous fish on a fly during the winter months is wet (subsurface) fly fishing. In Alaska, however, our winter months and angling strum to a different tune.
By RICH CULVER

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Exploring the realities of the 'butterfly effect' in Alaska

You might have heard the saying that a flutter of a butterfly's wings can change the course of the future.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN

Friday, March 20, 2015

Five questions with Kerry Howard, Wild Shots contributor

We at the Juneau Empire are always impressed with and grateful for the beautiful reader-submitted shots we get to share in Wild shots, a weekly feature in the Outdoors section.
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.

State seeks applicants for specialty crop grants

PALMER - The Division of Agriculture is now seeking applicants for its annual Specialty Crop Competitive Grant Program. The division intends to administer grants for multiple projects and grant ...

Photographer Bob Armstrong to lead Fireside chat

Well-known Juneau photographer, author and naturalist Bob Armstrong will bring nature's connections to the big screen in the auditorium of Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center for this week's ...

Legislators to compete at annual shoot

Legislators will show off their skill with firearms tomorrow during the Annual Legislative Team Shoot, an event sponsored by the Alaska Correctional Officers Association.

Permits available for Interior Alaska moose hunts

Surplus drawing permits for moose hunting in Interior Alaska are currently available. Interested parties have a chance to acquire a permit by faxing an application to the Fairbanks Fish and Game ...

On the Trails: Fossil hunting in Juneau

My two companions scrambled up the soggy slope with agile ease, and I lumbered along behind. My main job, as usual, was to throw sticks for the four-footed friend, but our real mission was finding ...
By Mary Willson

Off the Beaten Path: Wood bison are back; it's a big deal

When I was 19, I encountered my first wood bison. I was riding a mountain bike across Canada, near Liard Hot Springs in British Columbia, when I saw a hulking animal in the ditch.
By BJORN DIHLE

What's in Bloom: Japanese Butterbur

Japanese butterbur, Petasites japonicus var. giganteus, is one of the first flowers to bloom in spring, often pushing its flower spikes through the surrounding snow.
By MERRILL JENSEN

Local teacher honored with DSE inaugural award

Auke Bay Elementary School second grade teacher Allie Smith's students play games, measure snow and watch for seasonal changes in the outdoors.
By MARY CATHARINE MARTIN
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