Summertime in Prince of Wales, Alaska: The Island with the Royal-Sounding Name

by admin on May 9, 2013

Not only does Prince of Wales Island, Alaska have a royal-sounding name, but it is also a beautiful island with calm and serene surroundings. It is filled with beautiful scenery, wildlife and has many relaxing things to do. The island is about 45 miles wide by 140 miles long and has approximately 990-miles of coastline. It is surrounded by bays, coves and straits.

Summer on Prince of Wales Island has temperatures that range from 49 degrees F to 82 degrees F. The months of July and August are particularly great for a visit to the island because this is when the salmon are spawning and the bears and wolves are catching and feeding on the salmon. Some of the other things waiting for your enjoyment are fishing, camping, mountain biking, canoeing, kayaking and hiking on one of the many trails that are available. There are also over 600 caves on the island, some which you can explore, or you can take an exciting boat tour.

If you enjoy seeing wildlife in their natural habitat, Prince of Wales is the place to be. There are many wildlife viewing sites that you can choose from. Many of them have viewing platforms that are wheelchair accessible and that have restrooms. There are about 1,300 miles of roads on the island. Some of the roads are paved and some are well-maintained gravel roads, making it easy to get around.

Areas of interest may be Memorial Beach, Balls Lake, Sandy Beach Road, to name just a few.

Memorial Beach is where you can view humpback and killer whales out in Sumner Strait. Closer to the shore you will see harbor seals and Steller’s sea lions. There are a variety of birds at Memorial Beach that you will not see in the continental U.S. Some of those birds are pelagic cormorants, rhinoceros auklets, buffleheads, storm petrels and pigeon guillemots.

Beavers, black bears, eiders (large black and white sea ducks), river otters and Sitka black-tailed deer may be seen at Balls Lake. There are also hiking trails and picnic areas available.

On the eastern side of Prince of Wales Island is Sandy Beach Road. This is an unpaved road with pulloffs. Here you may see black bears, eagles, great blue herons, harbor seals, humpback and killer whales, Sitka black-tailed deer and Steller’s sea lions.

You will find Prince of Wales Island so delightful that you may never want to leave.

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