Saturday, December 8, 2012

The Angry, Angry Sea

We took a walk down to the beach this afternoon. It was still snowing a bit, and definitely blowing. He got some funny looks from people driving by-- not much of a walking town. 

 I have never seen the sea so rough at this beach, which fronts Kuluk Bay, part of the Bering Sea.

 Usually there are at least 20-30 feet of beach, even at high tide. In the background are the Gannet Rocks.

 See the pallet? There were dozens of pallets and logs being tossed around. Definitely a day for beach combing when things calm down. 

 Pictures like this make it look deceptively suburban and populated. Maybe 4 of these 21 or so units are occupied.

It was a cold walk back through town, so we stopped at the store to buy some marshmallows for hot cocoa. When we went to check out, we realized we didn't have any cash on us. You know you live in a small town when the cashier just shrugs and sticks your receipt on a bulletin board with a dozen others-- it's not like there's anywhere to hide.


  1. What happens to the other units? Who owns them, and is someone taking care of them?

  2. I believe that the other units are owned by the Native corporation, which owns the majority of the island-- acquired in the early 2000s in a trade for other lands in Alaska.

    Many of the units in this part of town are maintained for future use, but there are areas where unused units are in pretty bad shape.

  3. Apparently the Bering is rough in part because it's shallow -- the northern part is mostly less than 200 feet deep, and often less than 100. It's just a thin puddle of water on the continental shelf, and the shallowness helps to amplify wave action. I think the Bering gets a lot deeper down around where you are, though, so that may not be an explanation. (Of course, strong winter winds over long reaches of open ocean will give you big waves whether the ocean is shallow or not.)

    Doug M.

  4. Some of the units are owned by people who bought them and either left town or never came to live in them at all. Those ones aren't maintained at all. Many of them have really interesting layouts inside but are being ripped to shreds by the wind. Little holes soon gape.


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