Since 1971, NOLS students have been exploring the wilds of Alaska in sea kayaks. There's no better way to take in Alaska's dramatic coastline than by gliding on the water. Your launching point for this course is Petersburg, located in the heart of southeast Alaska's Inside Passage. This archipelago is a remote land of forest and ocean. Beaches jut up against dense, temperate rain forests, where giant spruce and hemlock rise to neck-craning heights. Much of your time will be spent near Kuiu Island, an ancient forest home to black bears, wolves, Sitka black-tailed deer, moose, and river otters. You'll learn to plan routes and navigate them using nautical charts, as well as hone technical skills such as paddling and open-water crossings. You may be rewarded by catching halibut or salmon or seeing the humpback and orca whales that abound in the area.