I'm always amazed by the numbers of people staying late at Holmes Beach. I should be used to it, but each time it surprises me just a little. I live about twenty minutes away and I'll come here to watch the sunset and take a few pictures. On the drive I figure the place will have emptied out. About the only time I've seen it empty is during a rare storm or heavy fog.
Holmes Beach is right at the end of a main thoroughfare so it's the most convenient to get to. Once in a while I come here during the day but mostly I'm here at sunset. If I walk up to the water I can see people lining the beach for at least a mile in each direction.
A few days ago we came here during the day to take a walk and relax. At the end of it we sat in an outdoor restaurant next to the lifeguard stand. As we watched the scene I had the idea of taking a shot with the people lining the shore. When I came back a few days later that's what I did, however this was not exactly the same shot I had in my mind, but close enough for now. I'll just have to come back to get that other shot I was thinking about. I have such a hard job sometimes.
This is a rendering of the midnight sun in the Alaskan summer. I took this from the balcony of a cruise ship late one evening as we sailed towards Seward. From my perspective on the ship there were hundreds of miles of mountains as far as you can see. The size of Alaska is so big that much of it is untouched by humans. I don't know that for a fact but given the size, terrain and remoteness it is all but impossible to fully explore. Perhaps Alaska is one of the last remaining frontiers on earth.
We live on an amazing planet and often I find myself without adequate words to describe what I'm seeing. Sometimes a photo will do but I may take liberties to express a feeling beyond what eyes can see. Of course, it's all a matter of interpretation but I do my best. So when I see and experience the vastness of Alaska I am at a loss for words. That's when I turn to art to convey something just beyond description.
Of course none of this is unusual. Case in point is the peoples of the original nations. Their art is prolific and profound and is shaped by the landscape, seasons and spirit of the region. Isn't it interesting how artist seem to congregate in places where beauty is abundant? Obviously there's something to it.
Back in the days of the gold-rush this was the red light district of the town of Ketchikan. Those days are long gone but naturally there are recreated saloons and bordellos along with souvenir shops.
There's a lot of history in towns like this. All I know for sure is that the early settlers of Alaska had to be heart when you consider the hardships required to get here and then make it though a winter. It's no wonder many spent their money here.
I was here in the summer at the peak of tourist season, but I'd be curious to see what it looks like in winter. I imagine most of the shops are shuttered with only a few open for residents. Most of the people that work in the shops are from the lower forty-eight, almost everyone I talked to was from somewhere else. I suppose Alaska and Florida have that in common.
Anyway, these buildings on stilts are typical of the area. I took this as I walked around the town on a rainy day.