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Wilderness and a Recipe


By Kathy Van Wulf Scat, Wilderness Explorer

This week on the Wilderness Explorer we left Sitka Saturday evening, pulled away from the dock during dinner, and motored out of Sitka Harbor towards the Magoun Islands-our destination for the night.

Each evening the Expedition Leader reviews the activity options for the following day including hikes with four levels of difficulty – from easy going flat terrain to butt buster climbs over rough trails. There are also guided kayak tours; glacier walks; open kayak and paddleboard where you paddle near the mooring at your leisure; snorkeling in neoprene wetsuits; skiff tours – riding in motor boats where you can get close to shore, glaciers, forested islands, and observe the amazing Alaskan landscape. And, you can always relax on the boat with a pair of binoculars or nestle in the lounge with a book or new friends.

watching whales

Watching a breaching whale nearby

Skiff tour

An exhilirating skiff tour


Heading out for a scenic kayak


Exploring a glacier up close

You can sleep with your window or door open snuggled under warm duvets. If you wake up during the night you’ll glimpse snow covered peaks, lush forests of white and yellow spruce, and for most of the summer, a twilight sky.

The Wilderness Explorer Crew are always on the go preparing for your adventures, cooking up delicious meals, tending to your cabin, ensuring the mechanical sections of the boat are in tip top shape, ferrying you to and from your outside activities, and always ready to attend to your needs in the moment.

One afternoon after riding in a skiff gliding over the water listening to our Expedition Guide tell about the geological history of our environment, our Guide turned off the motor and we sat in the roaring silence of the Alaskan wilderness – stillness… then… flapping wings of marbled murrelets, roaring waterfalls in the far distance, bird calls, the rush of wind through fir trees; each sound becoming distinct as we sat in our small boat enjoying the afternoon sun. Your Un-Cruise!

To top off a delicious lunch we enjoyed Aletha’s Carmelita’s Bars.

Carmelita’s Bars

2 cups flour
2 cups oatmeal
1 1/2 cups brown sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups soft butter

3 tablespoons flour
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cups chopped nuts
1 1/2 cups caramel sauce

Heat oven to 350 F. Combine bar ingredients and mix to evenly distribute butter. Spread 2/3 of the mixture evenly on a cookie sheet about 1 inch thick and bake for 15 minutes. Remove from oven spread remaining dry mixture, chocolate, nuts, then drizzle caramel on top. Return to oven and bake another 20 minutes until golden brown. Cool, then cut into squares and serve. Enjoy!

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