Bay of Pillars, Kuiu Island

Bay of Pillars, Kuiu Island

by | Feb 26, 2020

Bay of Pillars is 1.5 miles (2.4 km) across, on the west coast of Kuiu Island, between Point Sullivan to the north and Point Ellis to the south, 52 miles (84 km) southeast of Sitka and 52 miles (84 km) west-southwest of Petersburg, Alaska. The local descriptive name was published by William Healey Dall of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey in 1883 for the abundance of obstructing rocky islands and reefs.

In 1890, the Astoria & Alaska Packing Company built a cannery on the southern shore of Bay of Pillars about 4 miles (6.5 km) northeast from Point Ellis. This cannery was burned in 1892 and the site and remaining buildings were purchased by Jack Mantle who operated a saltery in each of the Pillar Bay arms. The principal streams in this vicinity fished for commercial purposes were Kwatahein Creek, Kutlaku Creek, Pillar Bay Stream in Rowan Bay, and Kuiu Stream (or Alecks Stream) in Tebenkof Bay.

Bay of Pillars is in the Kuiu Wilderness, part of a wilderness preserve protecting old-growth temperate rainforests, coastal estuaries, and subalpine meadows. A rustic camping shelter was built in 1997 near the shoreline of the Bay of Pillars, and the area is a popular destination for sea kayaking with several portages available during bad weather conditions. Read more here and here. Explore more of Bay of Pillars here:

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