Map showing the route taken by the Alaska Marine Highway Ferry
In July, I flew to Dutch Harbor or Unalaska of the Aleutian Islands where the Aleut or the Unangan have lived here for 10,000 .years. It is the second largest island in the Aleutians.
Along the Aleutian Island chain, Attu Island is the westernmost island, it was invaded by Japan in 1942, and 40 residents were captured and transferred to Hokkaido as prisoners of war, 40% of them died from diseases and starvation.
The iconic Mt. Ballyhoo on Amanak Island meets you when you fly or arrive by sea. Unalaska is filled with remnants of WWII, bunkers, pill boxes, munitions magazines, Panama mounts, and collapsed barracks. One cannot miss the Holy Ascension Cathedral, the Russian Orthodox church.
On top of Mt. Ballyhoo
I hiked up Bunker Hill and Mt. Ballyhoo. The 4-mile Ugadaga Trail, an ancient Unangan trail, is peaceful and isolated. It leads to the Ugadaga Bay where I took a cold dip as I was the only hiker for miles around. The trail has an abundance of wildflowers including the putchky. Lupins are blooming everywhere.
After three days in Unalaska, I took the Alaskan Marine Highway ferry up the Aleutians and the western Alaska Peninsula. I had a cabin with bunk beds but passengers can sleep on booths and camp on the decks. The ferry made brief stops on Akutan, Cold Bay, King Cove, Sand Point, Chignik, and Old Harbor and my last stop was Kodiak Island.
The church at Akutan, the island has The Alaskan Marine Highway ferry
a population of less than a thousand
and has boardwalks as roads.
The Church on Old Harbor. Rainy Kodiak
I wanted to see wildlife but only saw a spouting whale, kittiwakes, and many bald eagles. Still no puffins.
This is a trip worth taking. One could take the ferry to Homer but I chose to fly out from Kodiak.