Chilkat State Park


A few days ago, my 13-year-old son Logan and I descended in the Southeast in the tiny hamlet of Haines, Alaska—aka the Valley of Eagles. I take photographers here in October and November for the annual spectacle of the thousands of bald eagles that congregate on the Chilkat for the last of the chum salmon run. They fight and soar and spend most of their time trying to figure out how to steal a fish from another bird, rather than snag one of their own. But spring here is a different story. Yes, there are eagles, but the natural landscape takes center stage—even for a teenage boy. Our VRBO for two weeks here cost more than our monthly mortgage—after you gulp and gasp as I did, I’ll tell you it was worth every penny. Our cottage sits at the end of Mud Bay Road on an isolated inlet aptly named…