Ketchikan here we come
We awake to our first day at sea with gloomy weather on the port side and gloomy weather on the starboard side and gloomy weather ahead of us and gloomy weather behind us. It is rainy and foggy as we push out across Princes Charlotte Sound bound for Ketchikan in a days time. We are following the Inside Passage up British Columbia’s coast and then cross the border with Alaska just north of Port Rupert, where we had been a few days before. However, we are using a different channel to the one we did with the BC Ferries trip down from Prince Rupert. We are further off the coast in ‘wider’ water.
In a way its lucky we are having this weather as it is helping put out the fires that are still burning away. We are also at sea for a full day and can enjoy a quiet day on board. It is a formal night and people on board are really into this. Allthego and Homealone left their best behind as did a good many others. No one seemed to worry and we ate in the non formal area, the Italian restaurant. A very nice meal indeed. It was also time for the champagne waterfall, quite a performance with numerous bottles being poured by guests over the stacked glasses. Not sure what happens to the champagne though when it’s all over. Entertainment for the night was a ‘British Invasion ‘ show, with music from the 60s/70s from all those British musicians of that era.
We arrived in Ketchikan with improved weather, a little misty rain in the morning cleared out and we had some sun and a cloudy blue sky for the afternoon. Ketchikan is one of the wettest places on the north-west coast and can get up to 13 ft of rain a year, a sunny blue sky day is a rarity we were told. We were off the ship early for a tour of the temperate rain forest and a chance for wild life sightings along a salmon stream. Another black bear was spotted in the water, along with plenty of bald eagles in the trees. A short visit to a ‘animal hospital’ allowed a close up of a bald eagle and a few other birds of prey. These guys had been injured and rehabilitated but could not be released back into the wild because of their conditions.
The late morning saw us back in town checking out the town and its historical Creek Street area, back in the gold rush days of the late 1800s this area was home to the ladies of the night, some of the original buildings have been preserved, although now housing eateries and souvenir shops. The creek beneath the street is also a prime salmon run to a lake at the top. Salmon travel to the lake for spawning and having done so die shortly thereafter, if not the victim of bears, and get washed back down. They litter the banks of the stream and there is a strong odour of dead fish in the air.
Back on board ship at 1.30 pm we headed out for the passage north to Juneau and then Skagway.