Drizzly rain? Sure, it's Kodiak. Snow? Sure, it's October. Gale force winds and pouring rain? You gotta know when to throw in the towel.
Photos for this episode’s trip to Amook Bay only show the first few days. Larre and Bill started with blue skies and sunshine, but October weather is mercurial on Kodiak. We have photos of the snow, but once the downpour started they wisely packed away the camera. Aside from getting it wet, Larre says you couldn’t see anything. I don’t think they were in the mood to smile for the camera, either.
There are several ways to experience a remote adventure on Kodiak; you don’t have to rough it to the extreme of Larre and Bill. Keep in mind, you will probably need a float plane to get wherever you plan to go. They don’t call it remote for nothing.
Two brothers own Kingfisher Aviation, the plane that ferried Larre and Bill out to their destination and retrieved them when the storm let up enough for flight. They specialize in fly-in trips for bear viewing and taking people out to fishing spots. Their parents own Zachar Bay Lodge, which is out in the same part of Kodiak. There are several other lodges scattered around the islands, and you’ll catch fish at all of them. If you don’t want to sleep with the bears or don’t want to transport all your food and gear, lodges are the way to go.
Renting a remote cabin is another option. Much of Kodiak and Afognak Islands are included in the Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge. Public use cabins are scattered around the two islands, and provide a good base camp for hiking, fishing or hunting. Larre and his brother stayed in one in northwest Afognak — to be explored in a future podcast. You have to bring all your own gear, food and heating fuel for these cabins. Find out more at https://www.fws.gov/refuge/Kodiak/visit/visitor_activities/public_use_cabins.html
If flying to a remote spot is not your thing, you can find some great hiking trails and fishing along the road system outside the city of Kodiak. There’s plenty of fishing in the rivers, bears looking for fish, eagles looking for bears' leftovers, and even a bison herd along the roadside. Here's a log of highlights along the road system: http://www.kodiak.org/driving_tour