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Thursday, June 3, 2010

5/22 Prince Rupert to Ketchikan

  • We motored in to Ketchikan the afternoon of the 22nd after spending 4 nights in Prince Rupert. The stay in PR was longer than we would have chosen but first we had to trouble shoot the heater problem then make arrangements for the heater parts to be sent on to Ketchikan. By that time a storm front had rolled in and we were stuck there until it passed. So we wandered around PR, took in the museum, did a few odd jobs and projects and celebrated my birthday early. For my birthday I got a lovely pair of rubber ankle boots, lime green with blue and pink flowers. They are so ugly they are almost cute. But not quite. But they will keep my feet dry for the rest of the trip without causing me to stumble up and down the companion way stairs as my big rubber boots seemed to do. Something about the extra size of boots makes me all stumbly. Or perhaps it is just my normal clumsiness. Bill also managed to sneak in some birthday shopping and presented me with a baseball hat that says "spank me I've been nautical." It goes well with my new boots.

    We made arrangements with customs to stop at Foggy Bay on our way from PR to Ketchikan. It is unlawful to stop anywhere inside of AK without first clearing customs in Ketchikan unless you prearrange a stop over in Foggy Bay. It made for two relatively short days for us instead of one long one. Foggy Bay was quiet. We were alone when we arrived but were joined by two other boats later in the day. Then off to AK!

    AK is different. Big. Very big. BC has a lot of wild territory and empty anchorages when you are not in the popular areas like Desolation Sound but as soon as we were in AK it was as if someone just enlarged the horizon. The hills are taller, the mountains off in the distance in every direction and there are rocks and small islands everywhere. It made me thankful we have done all the sailing we have prior to this to know our navigational skills are up to par. There is lots see and do in AK and lots of things to run onto if one isn't careful. We still have not seen any marine mammals to speak of. It is a bit disappointing to me but I am ever hopeful that today will be the day!

    We lucked out on arrival in Ketchikan as a customs official was on the dock we pulled into looking for another boat. He saw our bright red Hydro vane wind vane from afar and thought we were a foreign flagged vessel so came over to investigate. So we had cleared through Customs almost before we had the lines tied. He was even able to give us directions to the freight company we needed to find to pick up our heater parts. Unfortunately the parts had not arrived and it is Saturday so we are here at least until Monday when hopefully we can install the parts and make sure they are the fix we are hoping for.

    It is wonderfully sunny here and the long underwear and sweaters are in the laundry to be done before we leave. The weather still has been quite nice for us, barely any rain underway. But I did give some thought to my next birthday which should either be French Polynesia or Central America. Both would be much warmer environs. It was a happy thought. I will turn 50 some where warm and likely we will have made some cruising friends by then too. Kat

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