Salt marshes are important food sources for brown bears. As we see an earlier start to the growing season or increased plant growth, bears will likely benefit from them even more. (Photo by Michael Hannam/NPS)

Refuge Notebook: Could bears benefit from changing coastal marshes?

Flying over the Cook Inlet coast, you can look down and see expansive salt marshes where mountain rivers meet the sea in lush green meadows.… Continue reading

Salt marshes are important food sources for brown bears. As we see an earlier start to the growing season or increased plant growth, bears will likely benefit from them even more. (Photo by Michael Hannam/NPS)
Homer High School. (Homer News file photo)

Sports in brief

General announcements All spectators must be on the player guest list. Two spectators per participant are allowed per game. The gym will be cleared after… Continue reading

Homer High School. (Homer News file photo)
Homer's Parker Lowney guards Kenai's Maison Dunham during a Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021 basketball game in the Alice Witte Gymnasium in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homer basketball teams sweep Kenai

The host Mariners swept the Kenai boys and girls basketball teams Tuesday night in the Alice Witte Gymnasium. The Lady Mariners topped the Kardinal girls… Continue reading

Homer's Parker Lowney guards Kenai's Maison Dunham during a Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021 basketball game in the Alice Witte Gymnasium in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Homer’s Hunter Green looks for an opening between two Kenai Kardinals during a Friday, Feb. 5, 2021 hockey game at the Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homer hockey falls to Kenai, Soldotna in weekend games

The hosting Homer hockey team fell to both Kenai and Soldotna in a pair of games over the weekend at the Kevin Bell Arena. The… Continue reading

Homer’s Hunter Green looks for an opening between two Kenai Kardinals during a Friday, Feb. 5, 2021 hockey game at the Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
A red-breasted nuthatch looks over its shoulder between bites of suet in a hanging-cage style feeder. (Photo by Todd Eskelin/USFWS)

Refuge Notebook: Social distancing is not just for humans

Salmonella is a type of bacteria that hits our news feeds often. Infections in human foods cause illness across the country and often result in… Continue reading

  • Feb 10, 2021
  • By TODD ESKELIN Peninsula Clarion
  • Outdoors
A red-breasted nuthatch looks over its shoulder between bites of suet in a hanging-cage style feeder. (Photo by Todd Eskelin/USFWS)
Phil Basargin 5-year-old Maxim Basargin around the ice Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021 during the Skate the Lake event on Beluga Lake in Homer, Alaska. The free skating event was hosted for the community by the Homer Hockey Association. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homerites take to the lake in skate event

Homer Hockey Association hosted Skate the Lake for the community

Phil Basargin 5-year-old Maxim Basargin around the ice Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021 during the Skate the Lake event on Beluga Lake in Homer, Alaska. The free skating event was hosted for the community by the Homer Hockey Association. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Seward's Max Pfeiffenberger makes a move past Homer's Parker Lowney during a Saturday, Jan. 30, 2021 basketball game at the Alice Witte Gymnasium in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homer basketball teams sweep games with Seward, Nikiski

Homer High School’s basketball teams swept their recent games against two peninsula competitors, the Seward Seahawks and the Nikiski Bulldogs. The Mariners faced the Seahawks… Continue reading

Seward's Max Pfeiffenberger makes a move past Homer's Parker Lowney during a Saturday, Jan. 30, 2021 basketball game at the Alice Witte Gymnasium in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Kenai Central's Landen Cialek attacks the net with Homer's Fiona Hatton defending Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021, at the Kenai Multi-Purpose Facility in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Kenai Central hockey celebrates senior night by topping Homer

The Kenai Central hockey team celebrated senior night with a 4-2 victory over Homer on Tuesday night at the Kenai Multi-Purpose Facility. The Kardinals avenged… Continue reading

Kenai Central's Landen Cialek attacks the net with Homer's Fiona Hatton defending Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021, at the Kenai Multi-Purpose Facility in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Homer High School. (Homer News file photo)

Sports in brief

General announcements All spectators must be on the player guest list. Two spectators per participant are allowed per game. The gym will be cleared after… Continue reading

Homer High School. (Homer News file photo)
Photo by Colin Canterbury/USFWS 
A rare photograph of a shrew during winter. This shrew was observed above the snow where it had been sneaking out of the subnivean zone for short periods of time, possibly to exploit seeds or suet that had fallen on top of the snow beneath a bird feeder in Soldotna.

Refuge notebook: The hidden subnivean

Alaska summers are fast paced with people, wildlife and plants all in apparent frenzy trying to capitalize on warm temperatures and sunlight. And with good… Continue reading

Photo by Colin Canterbury/USFWS 
A rare photograph of a shrew during winter. This shrew was observed above the snow where it had been sneaking out of the subnivean zone for short periods of time, possibly to exploit seeds or suet that had fallen on top of the snow beneath a bird feeder in Soldotna.
Predaceous flatworms hide under leaves by day in a spring near Soldotna Airport on Dec. 21, 2017. At night they hunt for other invertebrates. (Photo by Matt Bowser/USFWS)

Refuge Notebook: Life in Kenai Peninsula freshwater springs

I like winter. I really do. The cold and the dark don’t wear on me too much as long as I can get out and… Continue reading

Predaceous flatworms hide under leaves by day in a spring near Soldotna Airport on Dec. 21, 2017. At night they hunt for other invertebrates. (Photo by Matt Bowser/USFWS)
Homer's Sailey Rhodes confronts a trap of Soldotna's Jolie Widaman, Josie Sheridan and Rhys Cannava on Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)

Sports in brief

General announcements All Spectators must be on the player guest list. Two spectators per participant per game. Gym will be cleared after each contest. All… Continue reading

Homer's Sailey Rhodes confronts a trap of Soldotna's Jolie Widaman, Josie Sheridan and Rhys Cannava on Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, at Soldotna High School in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Homer’s Hunter Green looks for a way around Kenai’s Gavin Langham during a Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 hockey game between the two schools at Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homer splits weekend hockey games

Mariners top Kenai on the ice, lose to Soldotna in overtime

Homer’s Hunter Green looks for a way around Kenai’s Gavin Langham during a Friday, Jan. 22, 2021 hockey game between the two schools at Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Photo by Katrina Liebich/USFWS 
A fish friendly culvert in Alaska.

Refuge Notebook: What’s your number? Mine is 5

Have you ever considered how many salmon streams you cross on your daily drive to work, school or another location you frequent? My number is… Continue reading

Photo by Katrina Liebich/USFWS 
A fish friendly culvert in Alaska.
Kenai Central’s Emily Moss takes the victory in the girls race at the Kenai Nordic Trails on Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021, at Kenai Golf Course. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak)

Kenai, SoHi ski teams take dual meets

Kenai Central’s Jack Laker and Emily Moss were the top skiers in a dual meet between the Kardinals and Seward on Saturday at the Kenai… Continue reading

Kenai Central’s Emily Moss takes the victory in the girls race at the Kenai Nordic Trails on Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021, at Kenai Golf Course. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak)
The top three fish of this year’s Winter King Salmon Tournament hang on a wall before a closing ceremony announcing the winners on March 24, 2018 on the Spit in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homer Winter King Salmon Tournament moved to April

The annual Homer Winter King Salmon Tournament returns this year after a one-year hiatus, and has been pushed back to April. Canceled in 2020 due… Continue reading

The top three fish of this year’s Winter King Salmon Tournament hang on a wall before a closing ceremony announcing the winners on March 24, 2018 on the Spit in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Photo by Matt Bowser/USFWS 
Biological intern Annaleese Rasanen surveys severely burned alpine shrub tundra within the Swan Lake Fire burn July 27, 2020.

Refuge Notebook: A refuge manager’s perspective on 2020

A friend and colleague recently sent me a list of “things to consider” as 2020 drew to a close (all credit to the unidentified source… Continue reading

Photo by Matt Bowser/USFWS 
Biological intern Annaleese Rasanen surveys severely burned alpine shrub tundra within the Swan Lake Fire burn July 27, 2020.
Homer’s Bergen Knutson (left) and Toby Nevak (right) try to fend off Dimond’s Kaden Daniels during a Friday, Feb. 14, 2020 game at the 2020 ASAA First National Cup Division I Hockey State Championship at the Curtis D. Menard Memorial Sports Center in Wasilla, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Middle, high school sports resume

Middle and high school sport programs started back up this week as the Kenai Peninsula School District allowed a resumption of onsite education starting Monday.… Continue reading

Homer’s Bergen Knutson (left) and Toby Nevak (right) try to fend off Dimond’s Kaden Daniels during a Friday, Feb. 14, 2020 game at the 2020 ASAA First National Cup Division I Hockey State Championship at the Curtis D. Menard Memorial Sports Center in Wasilla, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)
Fletcher runs through the snow on Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021, on Diamond Ridge near Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)

Out of the Office: How all the dogs in my life have kept me sane and happy

I have written before about the virtues of big, rowdy dogs in developing an exercise plan. In my more than 40 years in Alaska, I… Continue reading

Fletcher runs through the snow on Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021, on Diamond Ridge near Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Michael Armstrong/Homer News)
Defending champion Joar Lefseth Ulsom runs his team down Fourth Ave during the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Saturday, March 2, 2019 in Anchorage, Alaska. (AP Photo/Michael Dinneen)

Start location changed for scaled-back Iditarod

ANCHORAGE (AP) — Officials with the scaled-back Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on Tuesday announced another change for the 2021 competition. The world’s most famous… Continue reading

  • Jan 6, 2021
Defending champion Joar Lefseth Ulsom runs his team down Fourth Ave during the ceremonial start of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race Saturday, March 2, 2019 in Anchorage, Alaska. (AP Photo/Michael Dinneen)