Forum Index » Post-Trip Reports » Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska


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Philip Tschersich
(Philip.AK) - F

Locale: Kodiak Alaska
Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 01:55:33 MDT Print View

I recently did a four-day trek from the south end of Kodiak in Alitak Bay to the village of Larsen Bay, half way up the west side of the island. I documented my trip in a short video:

Hiking from Alitak to Larsen Bay, Kodiak, AK

Cheers.

Tony Wong
(Valshar) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 02:26:42 MDT Print View

Philip,

Sitting in the sweltering heat of Singapore while visiting relatives and just watching your video made me feel cooler.

Great relaxing video that was a joy to watch to see what your neck of the woods looks like.

Thanks for sharing!

Tony

Ike Jutkowitz
(Ike) - M

Locale: Central Michigan
re: Kodiak Island on 06/22/2013 06:02:39 MDT Print View

Awesome trip with some great wildlife shots. Walking through the willow tunnels alone always has me on edge. You never know who you'll come face to face with.

I'll be returning to Alaska in a month and a half- your video was a great reminder of what I've been looking forward to.

David Noll
(dpnoll) - MLife

Locale: Maroon Bells
Hiking across Kodiak on 06/22/2013 06:20:05 MDT Print View

Wow. Great video. Very good early morning show with a cup of coffee.

Mole J
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
Great on 06/22/2013 06:42:03 MDT Print View

That looks a great time to be walking there. Loved the wildlife. Thanks.

Peter Nash
(nash.p@attbi.com)

Locale: West Michigan
Professional Video on 06/22/2013 08:05:25 MDT Print View

Your video looks professionally produced. I also enjoyed viewing it with my first cup of coffee this morning. Loved the great wildlife shots.

What type of video equipment did you use? What about the weight of the equipment? I'm generally curious about how the decision to video your trip affected your planning for the trip, and how much it otherwise affected your progress when underway.

Thanks for sharing this. It put a smile on my face.

Gary Dunckel
(Zia-Grill-Guy) - MLife

Locale: Boulder
Great work on 06/22/2013 08:20:18 MDT Print View

Very well done. You had spendid weather--I thought it always rained in Kodiak. Both times I was there, I never saw a dry moment. I especially liked the Larson ice cream cone! Thanks for sharing your adventure.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 08:21:54 MDT Print View

Nicely done Philip, thanks for sharing. Beautiful country.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 09:09:33 MDT Print View

A Big Thank You!
Great video of a great trip.


Do the pants in the closing have an armored front and integrated gaiters?
If so, who makes them?


What's next?

David W.
(Davidpcvsamoa) - MLife

Locale: East Bay, CA
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 09:42:46 MDT Print View

Thank you for sharing such a special place. Well done!

Philip Tschersich
(Philip.AK) - F

Locale: Kodiak Alaska
Re: Professional Video on 06/22/2013 09:59:24 MDT Print View

What type of video equipment did you use? What about the weight of the equipment? I'm generally curious about how the decision to video your trip affected your planning for the trip, and how much it otherwise affected your progress when underway.

I always take two cameras on my trips: a GoPro Hero2 (190g with housing and tripod adapter) and a Panasonic Lumix ZS20 point and shoot (210g). I will bring an extra battery for each on trips longer than 2 days, and will usually bring a small extra power brick as well on 4+ day outings just to make sure I don't run out of juice (e.g., Powergen 5200 mAh, 120g). I like to document my trips with video, so the camera weight is something that is worth it to me. I also use a small Pedco Ultrapod tripod (50g).

I will stop periodically and set up shots, which takes a minute or two, but I don't feel changes my progress or the flow of the hike/paddle/ski/whatever. It is actually a small part of the day. I have done this enough that I know what shots I want and can get the footage pretty efficiently. On this trip I shot a bit over 1 hour's worth of footage and used about 7 minutes of it in the video. A 10:1 ratio of raw to final footage is about average for me. The POV on-the-go shots I don't slow down for; I just pull the GoPro out as I walk and record and then put it away without ever stopping. Most of the animal shots are the same except I need to stand still briefly for them. It's only the self-recordings that require some sort of setup-backtrack-hike.

I used to shoot stills and do trip reports that way, but I have found that for many activities video offers me a more expressive retelling of the trip. Now I rarely do explanations or narratives. Just visuals.

Cheers.

Philip Tschersich
(Philip.AK) - F

Locale: Kodiak Alaska
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 10:12:17 MDT Print View

Do the pants in the closing have an armored front and integrated gaiters?
If so, who makes them?

They are Rab Torque pants (350g). No gaiter- just straight leg. I sewed the end of the lower leg zipper shut so they wouldn't unzip as I hike through brush, and I added a buttonhole at each side of the ankle cuff so that I can run a bit of 1/4" shock cord under my boot as a stirrup to keep them in place. That becomes the integrated gaiter, I suppose. I do this to all my hiking pants.

The knee and instep do indeed have a material that has kevlar/arimide threads woven in for armoring. While good in theory, the kevlar fibers actually are really abrasive to the normal weave material on the opposite pant leg. When I brush my ankles together when walking, the instep patch abrades the opposite instep and I have already worn holes through the cuff. I'll just add another layer of instep material and that should fix it. Otherwise they are really great fitting, comfy, summer-weight hiking pants. I was skeptical of the shock-cord waist drawstring, but they don't ride down even when humping up hills on warm days with a 30-pound pack. I dig them.

Edited by Philip.AK on 06/22/2013 10:14:23 MDT.

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 11:08:11 MDT Print View

Inspiring. Thanks Philip!

peter vacco
(fluff@inreach.com) - M

Locale: no. california
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/22/2013 20:38:42 MDT Print View

now THAT was a proper walk.

Lars Monsen walked across some alaskan island years ago to "be with the bears"..
..ok .
sure ..

nice work. well done. and you made it look so easy. quite elegant movement you have there.

v.

Philip Tschersich
(Philip.AK) - F

Locale: Kodiak Alaska
For your consideration on 06/22/2013 22:47:24 MDT Print View

If you guys like coastal Alaskan scenery and animals, and you aren't totally sick of my trip reports yet, I would like to take the liberty of suggesting a video I made of a sea kayak trip I did last summer from my home in Kodiak to the town of Homer on the Alaskan mainland last summer. It is a bit longer, but then it was an 11-day solo journey. I think I captured the essence of the experience pretty well, if I may say so myself. If it softens the blow of watching a sea kayaking video I will point out that I did some nice hikes along the trip. :^)

Link: Paddling from Kodiak to Homer, Alaska

I do appreciate all the kind feedback. Cheers.

Edited by Philip.AK on 06/22/2013 22:48:41 MDT.

Miguel Arboleda
(butuki) - MLife

Locale: Kanto Plain, Japan
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/23/2013 00:54:56 MDT Print View

That was wonderful. Stuck here sick in Tokyo, it was wonderful to be able to vicariously get out there with this well-done video. Thanks!

John Kays
(johnk) - M

Locale: SoCal
Discipline and self-control on 06/23/2013 18:24:54 MDT Print View

No way would that ice cream cone have survived to the cash register let alone to the front porch of the store. Absolutely some of the best wilderness travel footage I've seen, both. Please post more.

Edited by johnk on 06/23/2013 22:40:37 MDT.

Nick Gatel
(ngatel) - MLife

Locale: Southern California
Re: Hiking across Kodiak Island, Alaska on 06/23/2013 18:55:19 MDT Print View

Fantastic. Both trips.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: For your consideration on 06/23/2013 18:58:46 MDT Print View

You must have an incredible rapport with the weather gods....

Edited by greg23 on 06/23/2013 18:59:19 MDT.

Philip Tschersich
(Philip.AK) - F

Locale: Kodiak Alaska
Charmed life on 06/24/2013 10:51:16 MDT Print View

I can't account for how I can live in a place with such regular nasty weather and end up with so many glorious days on my trips, but I do believe that it is often better to be lucky than to be good. That said, having lived here for almost 25 years helps a lot because I am a semi-expert on doing my own forecasts based on satellite weather info. The 48-hour predictions are easy. 3-day forecasts start getting iffy. 4 days? Low probability of success. 5+ days? Forget it. :^)

Your best bet is to have a flexible work schedule and be able to dash out the door at a moment's notice when things look opportune.