Tuesday, June 23, 2015

At Home in Haines

Traveling through the Yukon
After traversing the Yukon Territory, we entered Alaska once again.  The Yukon sun continued to follow us across the border and the mountains continued to reveal their white faces.  
Chilkat River
As we neared Haines, we drove through the village of Klukwan, a permanent typical Native village at the fork of the Klehini River and the Chilkat River.  The nicest buildings in town are the school and cultural center as is usually the case.  
Fish Trap along the Chilkat River
The most interesting thing we found were two modern fish traps along Highway 4 leading into Haines.  The Natives no doubt have special permission or allowance to install and use the fish traps.  The river current keeps the trap rotating, while three large wire-mesh baskets scoop up the fish.  As the basket lifts out of the water, fish fall through a chute into buckets placed on either side of the wheel.  
Fish Trap between Klukwan & Haines on the Chilkat River
The mountain backdrop made for a scenic photo shoot of the wheels.  As it wasn't the right time of year for a salmon run, we didn’t see any fish being scooped up in the baskets.  We soon entered Haines and decided to drive the five-mile Mud Bay Road out to Letnikof Cove before we returned the rental car.  The 
Haines Packing Co. at old cannery site
Mud Bay Road took us to the Haines Packing Company which processes fish at an old cannery site.  The plant uses state-of-the-art equipment to process five species of wild Alaska salmon delivered by the local fishing fleet.  Custom products include smoked salmon, caviar, fresh and frozen salmon fillets, salmon jerky, and halibut.  
A beautiful setting, Haines Packing Company in Letnikof Cove
As to be expected, the red buildings of the old cannery are set in a scenic location surrounded by mountains, beautiful!  Ok, it was time to head back into town and un-load the car, Got d’ Fever was waiting for us.  As with most communities where we spend time, Haines was beginning to feel like home and Java too was happy to be back.

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