To greater or lesser extents, Alaskans depend upon rivers to lead us to our homes, livelihoods, recreation, and food sources as surely as citizens of Seattle, Los Angeles, Memphis or Pittsburg rely upon freeways to access the same things.
And of course, waiting at the far end of the trail are those mountain lakes, deep and cold, holding hungry trout, grayling and char eager to strike flies, spinners or spoons.
By Ken Marsh A spruce bark beetle infestation across Southcentral Alaska in recent years has proven beneficial for regional woodpeckers. From Petersville to Palmer, Anchorage and beyond, infested trees have provided a year-round banquet for these sharp-billed birds. Downy and hairy woodpeckers are most common around Anchorage, but a hike yesterday was highlighted by anContinue reading “A Winter’s Walk with Woody”
By Ken Marsh Every city, village and community in this wilderness state has its own birds, animals and viewing treasures. Armed only with a camera and with nowhere to hide I knew calling in a bull moose might be risky. But afternoon glare had eased into golden evening light and the willow shadows now stretchedContinue reading “Alaska Wildlife Viewing: The Urban Option”
Alaska’s wild side is home to a distinctive assortment of birds. By Ken Marsh “One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.” —William Shakespeare The surf charges in with a drumroll that crescendos, peaks, then breaks in a carbonated hiss. It’s late afternoon and, wrapped in waders and raingear, I’ve left the shelter ofContinue reading “CONFESSIONS OF A CASUAL BIRDER”
Photos by Ken Marsh Mallards are a hardy breed. Cold weather really doesn’t seem to bother them as long as open water and/or food is available. These ducks winter in Anchorage, Alaska, despite subzero temperatures and deep snow. They seem no worse for the wear. ###
We caught and released at least 50 trout that late summer day, all big, powerful, vibrantly colored fish that leaped and ran like the wild things they were. The sandbars were stamped with grizzly bear tracks and not another angler in sight. Such days are rare anymore from the road system in Alaska’s Susitna Valley.Continue reading “Rainbow Days”
North America’s “other” upland bird flies like a bat out of Hell, promising gunning challenges and rewards no hunter should miss.
Few places in the civilized world retain a stronger connection to hunting, gathering and eating well from the land than our home state. By Ken Marsh One late-September evening years ago, as I hiked with my trapping partner along a birch ridge down the lake from our cabin, a bull moose charged out of theContinue reading “Cooking Wild: Eating Alaskan”
By Ken Marsh When you have shot one bird flying you have shot all birds flying. They are all different and they fly in different ways but the sensation is the same and the last one is as good as the first. – Ernest Hemingway You’re marching under a late-September sun, shotgun over your shoulderContinue reading “Small Pleasures”