Well, we should have been out of here a week ago, the weather is changing, Autumn is manifesting itself and a series of low-pressure depressions have been rolling across the North Pacific into the Gulf of Alaska. There are about 4 days between each one, so, the law of averages tells you that we’re going to catch one at some stage of our 7-day itinerary.
This week it was the day before Ketchikan and in Ketchikan itself, we had 60-kt winds last night and that’s in the Inside Passage; 45 kts as we came down Tongass Narrows and 30 kts as we docked. Fortunately, the wind was virtually up and down the channel, so we were directly heading into it. Nevertheless, the conditions warranted an unconventional approach to the dock. Keeping well off the pier and then ‘walking’ her across, head to that wind on, you guessed it, Joystick! 😯
Anyway, we are here now, however it is a short call, 6 hours, before we go like a bat out of hell for our (short) Victoria call.
Earlier in the week, Tuesday and part of Wednesday was reasonably pleasant, although we have seen rain most of the week. One look at Tracy Arm entrance and I decided to go into Endicott Arm. Tracy had massive blocks of ice near the entrance and several small bergs had managed their way into the Frederick Sound as well.
Endicott was very successful and we made it to Dawes glacier, guests and crew alike getting close enough for some lovely photos.
The mornings are darker now and Juneau, where I could take photos during daylight a few weeks ago, now requires ‘night’ adjustments. As it is the end of the season, work is commencing on new floating docks for Cruise ships. Those of you that are familiar with Juneau, there will be new docks at the Cruise terminal and Alaska Steam. The first section will be started, at the CT and the barges, loaded with construction paraphernalia, followed us up the Gastineau Channel and berthed behind us. Next week’s arrival might be unorthodox too, for they are moving barges and buoys into the harbour.
When these new berths are complete, it will be so much better for us. As it is, we continually have change the deck on which our gangway leads to, this because of the large rise and fall of the tide. When these new docks are complete, they ‘float’, so no more adjustments to our gangway. I can’t wait.
So, soon on our way to Victoria and thence to Seattle. Our final week starts on Sunday, we finish our Alaska itinerary on the 27th, at least for this year as we’re back again in 2016. I disembark on that day too. 😀
As many of you know, my final week is full of paperwork, (not that it isn’t always full), however this time it is Handover reports and others to corporate. I will try to write, however can’t promise. I’m sure you’d find my time on leave rather boring, so won’t bother you with the mundane. I have some photos of the grandchildren though and will do my best to post those. You’ll ‘see’ me again in January, the 2016 Grand World voyage begineth!