Viekoda Bay, Kodiak Island National Wildlife Refuge

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Viekoda Bay, Kodiak Island National Wildlife Refuge

by | May 8, 2020

Viekoda Bay is a fjord that extends southeast for 18 miles (29 km) off Shelikof Strait on the northern coast of Kodiak Island, about 134 miles (216 km) southwest of Homer and 26 miles (42 km) west-northwest of the city of Kodiak, Alaska. The name is from the Russian “Mys Vykhoda” meaning “Outlet Cape” given by Mikhail Murashev in 1839 or 1840 for the eastern point of entrance to this bay. In 1909, the name was published on charts by the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey.

The southern shore of Viekoda Bay lies within the Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge. The northern shore is part of the Kupreanof Peninsula with mixed land ownership including the State of Alaska, Afognak Native Corporation, and private in-holdings. The Kodiak National Wildlife Refuge is 1.9 million acres (768,903 ha) and includes the southwestern two-thirds of Kodiak Island, Uganik Island, the Red Peaks area of Afognak Island and all of Ban Island. The refuge contains seven major rivers and about 100 streams that include spawning habitat for all five species of Pacific salmon, as well as steelhead and Dolly Varden. The refuge has only six native species of mammals including an estimated 2,300 Kodiak brown bears. Other mammals are the red fox, river otter, ermine, little brown bat, and tundra vole. The non-native mammals are Sitka black-tailed deer, mountain goat, Roosevelt elk, caribou, marten, red squirrel, snowshoe hare, and beaver that were introduced to the archipelago between the 1920s and 1950s and are now hunted and trapped.

The refuge currently maintains 8 public use cabins, including one in Viekoda Bay, each available on a reservation basis. The cabins are rustic and equipped with basic amenities including bunk beds without mattresses, a table and chairs, and an exterior storage cache for supplies or fish and game meat storage. Outhouse-style toilets are also provided. Cabins are also equipped with stoves for heating. The only access to Viekoda Bay is by boat or floatplane. Read more here and here. Explore more of Viekoda Bay here:

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