Point Elrington, Elrington Island

Point Elrington, Elrington Island

by | Feb 10, 2023

Point Elrington is a tied island connected by a gravel isthmus to the southwestern tip of Elrington Island in the Gulf of Alaska, about 96 miles (155 km) southwest of Cordova and 43 miles (69 km) east-southeast of Seward, Alaska. The point was named by sailing master Joseph Whidbey of the Royal Navy on May 27, 1794, presumably for Hannah Elrington, who would later marry Lieutenant Peter Puget. Puget was in command of HMS Chatham, the survey ship that accompanied the HMS Discovery on the Vancouver Expedition from 1791 to 1795. Elrington Island was named for the point and was first reported in 1905 by Ulysses S. Grant of the U.S. Geological Survey. Today, the point is a U.S. Coast Guard lighthouse reserve, and although a lighthouse was never built, there is an important lighted aid to navigation that flashed every 6 seconds from an elevation of 30 feet (7 m).

Elrington Island is at the southwestern margin of Prince William Sound, situated between Latouche Island to the east and Evans Island to the west, and trends northeast-southwest for about 11 miles (18 km). The southwestern end of the island is formed by rocks of the Orca Group that consists of basalt and sedimentary rocks of turbidite origins. Point Elrington is formed by volcanic rocks of the Orca Group and Ghost Rocks Formation. Volcanic rocks of the Orca Group are pillow and columnar basalts and intruded dikes of gabbro and diorite. The Ghost Rocks Formation consists of basalts typically altered by low-grade metamorphism.

Point Elrington is an important sea lion haulout, mostly for Steller sea lions but the first documented sighting of a California sea lion in Alaska was in 1973 when an adult male was photographed at Point Elrington. California sea lions in Alaska most often are seen alone and only occasionally in small groups, although hundreds have been found to haul out together along the Washington coast and in southern British Columbia. The relatively few California sea lions found in Alaska usually have been associated with Steller sea lions at their haulouts and rookeries. Read more here and here. Explore more of Point Elrington and Elrington Island here:

About the background graphic

This ‘warming stripe’ graphic is a visual representation of the change in global temperature from 1850 (top) to 2022 (bottom). Each stripe represents the average global temperature for one year. The average temperature from 1971-2000 is set as the boundary between blue and red. The color scale goes from -0.7°C to +0.7°C. The data are from the UK Met Office HadCRUT4.6 dataset. 

Credit: Professor Ed Hawkins (University of Reading). Click here for more information about the #warmingstripes.

Please report any errors here

error: Content is protected !!