Distance from Kodiak: 11 air miles
Ouzinkie, the village that lies closest to Kodiak city, is a quiet little settlement located on the southwest shore of Spruce Island. Not surprisingly, it is characterized by towering spruce trees. A visit to Ouzinkie offers opportunity for a true glimpse into rural village life as well as great sport fishing. Villagers harvest salmon, halibut, herring and clams from surrounding waters and duck, deer and rabbit from the land nearby. Ouzinkie was founded in the early 1800s by the Russian American Company as a retirement community. The Church of the Nativity, built in 1898 is tucked in a cove of spruce trees. A network of wooden boardwalks offers a unique means to explore. Spruce Island was home to St. Herman, the first canonized Russian Orthodox saint in North America. St. Herman’s chapel is located at Monk’s Lagoon and can be explored with a local Russian Orthodox Church reader who explains the holy sites and old gravestones.
Ouzinkie charter operators offer fishing and sightseeing excursions from the village, Anton Larsen Bay or Kodiak. Spruce Island is ideal for hiking with a newly developed trail system and is a “bear-free” environment. Often one can see the vaporous spouts of whales in the blue waters of Marmot Bay.
For more information about Ouzinkie, visit the Alaska Department of Community & Economic Development.