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Faerylands in Alaska


A little over a week of time in the rainforest around Juneau, Alaska was enough to reveal a land dense with primeval faery spirits. I am sure the native people have their own names for the spirits of the forests and waterfalls, but even not knowing them we were dazzled by their friendly presence. It rained every day we were there, but with good gear we kept fairly dry. We even managed two nights of camping at Mendenhall Lake, on a spit of land surrounded by that glacier-fed lake. Looking through the evening mist at the huge glacier, we sat alone on the rocks and felt like we had stepped out of time.

Surrounded by ice-fields and water, there are no roads to Juneau; thus the only access is by boat or air. A million tourists a year throng through the town, most brought by monstrously big cruise ships. But these folks pretty much stay in the town and on expensive flight-seeing excursions. This leaves every place that you have to hike to magically quiet but for birds and animals rustling about. We saw marmots, porcupines, squirrels, beaver, salmon and bald eagles hunting them. No bears, though they flourish there - apparently the bears were at higher grounds fattening up for the winter.

We collected a few small stones to place in the northwest of our Henge, and left our prayers as offerings to the place. Our Henge is getting more and more to feel like the center of a web of the sacred places that we go to.

May Juneau's surround remain the beautiful wild wilderness that it is forever.

A small path leads away from the trail to Sheep Creek.

This "chalice and the blade" arrangement of stones was next to where we camped at Mendenhall Lake.

It was raining on this little pond near our camp at Mendenhall Glacier.

Icebergs at the toe of the glacier at Tracy Arm fjord; large families of seals live there too.

Tiny uninhabited islands off the coast above Juneau.

There were plenty of breaching Humpback whales, joyous spirits at play.


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