A somewhat delayed post this week, mainly due to a change of itinerary and some considerable time on the bridge; this not due to the change, more to do with the weather, insomuch we have experienced reduced visibility on a number of occasions. I’m pleased to say that this did not detract from guests’ enjoyment, as it occurred mainly during our sea-days and not port days in Alaska.
Instead of making our way north to Juneau, we now have a visit to Glacier Bay National Park as our first ‘port’ and as a consequence have had to make good speed from Vancouver northwards.
For the first of our voyages, I chose to take courses to the west, leaving the Queen Charlotte Islands away on our starboard side; however, on the second cruise, my weather models indicated a pronounced swell in that area and instead chose to take the more sheltered route, up through the Hecate Straits and ‘swing’ a left in the Dixon Entrance, this afforded us some lee from the swell and it proved to be a worthwhile decision.
The weather is changing in Alaska and the cloud cover is increasing and with it, some moisture, hence the reduced visibility. Our first call in Glacier Bay was shrouded in mist and showers and our second started that way too, however after some miles north, the sun broke through and our guests were treated to the spectacle of this area at its best.
Humpback whales in abundance and we were fortunate to sight a pod of Orca, making their way north, the seals had better beware!
The salmon are still running and on a glorious morning in Ketchikan I took the opportunity to take a stroll and some photographs for you. Salmon were having a hard time navigating the creek here, it comprises of a series of rocky waterfalls and the still-water pools were thick with fish, either gathering their strength or too tired, having tried unsuccessfully already. Some of the more resilient managed the ‘leaps’ though, literally survival of the fittest in this cycle of life.
The creek runs through what once was the red-light district of Ketchikan, now a picturesque collection of boutiques and small restaurants, it once catered to the hundreds of fishermen who stopped here to unload their salmon catches at the numerous processing plants, no more ladies of the night here now. It was once the salmon ‘capital’ of the world and is still relatively busy, just south of the town lie the wharves where the boats dock to unload their fish. I’m told it has been a very good year for salmon…