Aki and I walk along the lower Mendenhall River, now a world reduced to black and white by a heavy snow shower. This morning’s high tide melted away all whiteness from the beach, leaving only toppings of snow on clumps of severed seaweed. Fat flakes from the storm try to lighten the still wet sand but end up producing a transparent slurry that Aki avoids by walking above the tide line. We have dusk at 1330 even though official sunset is at least two hours away.
All the sand bars were under water when we first broke from the forest but now they grow in the ebbing tide. Ducks and geese, probably seeking a sanctuary from two hunting seals, form tight groups that cackle out warning when a bald eagle launches from its beach side spruce tree roost. By the time the eagle reaches the sandbar, its potential prey have scattered. The big bird returns to its roost.
Having no luck last week enticing a seal with song, I try to whistle in a pair cruising the river. One does change course and moves, head elevated from the water, in our direction. It dives when I bring out the camera. Down channel we enjoy a second dawn. The clouds crack, allowing views of a wedge of blue and weak sunlight that returns color to our world.