We slide past a small island and start seeing more boats and in the distance large buildings. I am surprisingly apprehensive about going to shore with people. We paddle closer to Shearwater marina and for the first time in seven days we are having to maneuver around speeding boats, docks and trying to figure out where to land our kayaks. We find a dock which is close to the Harbor Master and park. Our kayaks once beautiful white hulls are turning black with oil that shimmers on the surface of the water. Engines idle creating blue smoke haze in the air and people are looking at us wondering where we came from and why we were out in the crazy winds. I know it has just been 7 days but when you just have each other and mostly natural noises life slows down and actually feels quiet, if that makes sense. Don’t get me wrong the smell of burgers and greasy fish and chips were to die for but I just wanted to turn around and paddle away.
Harbor life is a different way of living. People come and go on boats the size of houses or junkers ready to sink. We meet many people who are living on their boats, sailing or motoring up and down from Alaska to Washington or vice versa. Everyone is either friendly or crusty but either way seems happy to talk to us and give us loads of advice. We come across a friendly lady that had kayaked a few years back from Juneau to Washington that was wishing she was back in her boat after talking with us. She gives us great advice on places to go and we discuss bear safety, dry suits and other aspects of kayak camping. We talked to sailors who told us their favorite spots in Glacier Bay, boaters who had seen us the day before and seemed surprised we had beat the wind and locales who hear our plans and tell us they dream of leaving.
We unpacked our boats and set up camp in a grassy RV campground with lights and houses. This is not our most romantic site, but we were able to get our box of food, take real showers and shop for produce. And it is home for the night.