Club Expedition to Alaska “Day 13”
28th August (Tuesday) – Decision Point Storm Bound
The weather forecast has promised wind, and in the middle of night it definitely arrived. Getting up to check that the kit left hanging hopefully to dry hadn’t blown away I realised it wasn’t raining! And the kit was dry. Waking closer to morning and crawling out of the tent for a stroll down the beach, not only was it not raining but the sky was blue with hardly a cloud in sight. It was still pretty windy though. So now we knew that partly sunny = cloudy and horrible all day (Monday’s forecast) and partly cloudy meant sunny all-day Tuesdays forecast!
The realisation that the sun was shining filtered through the campsite and suddenly everyone was scrambling to hang out all the wet kit to dry. Martin was over excited by the prospect of going home with a bag of dry stuff which is much pleasanter (and lighter) than a bag of wet manky clothes. Never have I seen so many items of underclothing spread out on a beach! The ‘Keith`s’ had beaten us to it and were on the beach enjoying breakfast in the sunshine. An impressive bit of delegation followed as Keith S remained in place, and his cap, sleeping bag and other items arrived at his side along with cups of coffee.
Elsewhere on the beach swimmers were to be seen, this time Ian and Mike followed Nikki into the water – apparently further away from the ice the water is colder?!?
The forecast confirmed what we knew, the wind was too strong to go anywhere, certainly some of the gusts felt like they’d carry you away, but they also guaranteed dry kit. A sunny stormbound day felt like a rare treat – well let’s face it sunshine was a rare treat this trip. Much lazing and some socialising with the local occupant of the campsite followed, hard to believe only a short paddle to Whittier remained of the trip.
Throughout the trip entertainment highlights have been provided by the wildlife and Mr Grumpy. In fact, at some points the antics of sea otters and the rants of Mr Grumpy were the only things that kept the spirts up. Number 57 on the list of life’s most annoying things is porridge apparently. Breakfast became elevenses and then lunch and the campsite wildlife, a ground squirrel, came out to discover if we had any food.
As the sun moved we swapped beaches – decision point happily had 2 beaches facing opposite directions. Keith decided it was time to record the events of the trip. Much muttering and moaning followed, but recordings were made – can’t remember what I said, and you can bet its completely different to this write up!
Conversation invariably turned to how much food was left-over, and some food swapping occurred to gift Keith S with a packet of cheesy broccoli.
As evening approached another couple of paddlers arrived. Mark and Roger went to welcome them and after a last evening meal and rubbish fire folks drifted to the tents to prepare for 7am on the water for the final push to Whittier. Looking at the clear sky Keith S decided to sleep out in his bivvy bag – just in case the night sky decided to put on a show ………