The clouds cracked open this morning as Aki and l loaded I into the car. They let in enough sunshine to reflect off of Gastineau Channel. The sun lit up the blue patch of exposed skiy and painted the bordering clouds with sunset colors.
The blue hole slowly closed as we drove to the Gastineau Meadows trailhead. When we arrived, Mts. Juneau, Roberts and Sheep still glowed white across the channel. Now they have returned to rain forest gray.
We climb an icy trail through a bull pine forest to the meadow, just in time to witness the clouds close over the hole. In Southeast Alaska we call these patches of blue in the marine layer, “sucker holes.” More than one pilot lost above the cloud layer had flown through one of these holes in hope that he will be able to find his way home beneath the gray. For more than one, this has been misplaced hope. Aki seems unaffected as the hole closes, dimming the day. But it ends any hope I had for a sunny, winter day.