Thursday, September 11, 2008

Ketchikan, Alaska

Oh my gosh, I didn't finish telling you about our Alaskan cruise. Things have just been so hectic with the house renovation and getting ready for craft shows. Anyway, our last stop on the cruise was Ketchikan. This is a really neat place and wish I had more time to explore there. Next time I will not plan so many shore excursions (as great as they are) so we can do more exploring around town and taking in the architecture, shops, etc. Notice the photo of Timm pointing up...he is pointing to the Ace Hardware sign. He and his nephew, Guy have quite an infatuation with them. He quote to Guy was, "They're everywhere!" The Duck boat is an amphibius vehicle that tours through town on and off the water. I think that would have been neat to do also. We didn't get to explore Creek Street either, that's the old red light district. The houses are built on stilts and the houses sit half way over the creek (to serve both sides, the streets and those on boats). We did most of our shopping here for souveniers, mostly for the kids.

Our tour at this stop was the Wilderness Exploration and Crab Feast. We took a bus out of town (along with a short narrative tour) to the George Inlet Lodge. From there we boarded a small pontoon boat and headed up the inlet to a small cove where they set crab pots daily for dungeoness crab. Timm got to pull up the pots. We had several crabs and a sunflower starfish in the pot. They prey on crabs so once one in the pots no more crabs will go in the pots. We passed the old Libby Cannery to and from the cove. It's the buildings on all the pylons (is that the right word?). It apparently shut down just before Alaska became a state. Back at the lodge we dined on dungeoness crab. Let me just say it is delicious! I think Timm ate 3 whole crabs, I had one. Dessert was homemade cheesecake with fresh picked blueberries...YUMMY!

Ketchikan gets 14 feet, yes, I said 14 feet of rain each year. Although we had a lovely day full of sunshine (as with almost all of our trip). What a difference from Las Vegas with a whopping 4 1/2 inches (and we haven't even come close to that this year). That would explain why moss grows on the rooftops of homes and businesses there, especially on the flat roofs we could see from the ship and home with asphalt shingles. One house had a lawn that seriously needed mowing, must have been a foot tall.
Ketchikan sits on one of the largest islands in North America yet there are only 36 miles of road. They have police and state troopers for those 36 miles, I think that is hilarious. Where are you going to go if you were to steal a car, really. The forest is sooooo dense you aren't getting off the roads.

Oh, and Timm 'mooned' some obnoxious local teenagers as we left town. I couldn't believe he did that...then again...
We were heading south back towards Vancouver after Ketchikan. A whole day at sea, saw some whales and dolphins, relaxed, and didn't want to come back to reality. I really wanted to take 'June', our cabin steward home with us. What a wonderful young man. He took his duties to heart, was very personable and kind...and made the cutest little towel critters.

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