Inside Passage Blog

By Linda Lewis

 

 

May 29, 2007 – Royal Sounder in Ketchikan

 

Back again with more fun and frolic on the water. This time in Ketchikan.
 
The weather is keeping us here so my travels and pictures are rather city-centric. However, I went zizzing around in the dinghy yesterday and found some interesting things.
 
The cruise ship Norwegian Star definitely gets the prize for being the most colorful of the FOUR cruise ships that are currently in port here.

A little later in the day the ship departed and I got this "smiling" view that I hadn't quite noticed in the previous picture.

Lots of boats are on the water in Tongass Narrows. This looks like a squeeze play by the AK ferry and the cruise ship. See the poor little sailor in the middle? But, not to worry. The squeeze play is just an optical illusion as the cruise ship is anchored and the ferry and sailboat are not on a collision course.

Here's that same sailboat later in the day furling his main sail right around the mast.

One of the docks is currently under construction here. It was called the City Floats and is now being called the Casey Moran harbor. The area is completely blocked off to recreational boaters due to the construction. But what's that I see? Cruise ship tenders can use the little harbor to transport their passengers back and forth. See the long line along the dock?

So... my guess is that recreational boaters have seen the last of being able to tie up here. With the cruise ship dock being lengthened way into this harbor's area (to accommodate three ships at the dock instead of two) and with two more ships anchored out, this little area looks like it will be all sewn up by the cruise ship companies.

I was very surprised to see this cruise ship anchored as far north as the south breakwater entrance at Bar Harbor Marina. It's really getting crowded in Ketchikan.

Here's another kind of boat that caught my eye. I think the name is a bit of an oxymoron.

And here is some more whimsy for you. These are dock carts. Ketchikan style.
(Yes, it's OK with Safeway to take your groceries to your boat and leave the carts here. They come down and pick them up.)

This is actually the real life along the docks. This long-liner deck hand is faced with untangling four fishing lines that are hundreds of feet long. He was at it for half a day.

And here is the final series of pictures. I came around a corner in the dinghy and stumbled upon the Empress of the North in dry dock. This is the beautiful paddle-wheel style boat we have seen on the water in previous years. Just a few weeks ago it hit some rocks somewhere in Icy Strait.

It was up high enough for me to tweak the dinghy right in under it and take some close-up pictures. You can see the two 360 degree V-drive engines under the stern that give it incredible steering flexibility. (There are two more of these at the bow.) The paddle wheel does turn and actually gives the boat some of its propulsion.

How about a closer look? Here are the port propellors. Not too bad.

But look at that starboard set of props. (See the picture after this one for an even closer look.)

Here's the real close-up.

Curled up, broken off. Ouch. It's a mess.
 
There you have it folks. Life in Ketchikan.
 
I'm off to go visit a new boating friend.

Linda & Dave
M/V Royal Sounder

 


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