July 12, 2008 Foggy Bay to Ketchikan

A helicopter circled the bay a few times as we pulled up the anchor and steamed toward Ketchikan. Just a reminder that we’re back in the USA and big brother is watching our every move. We had an uncomfortable quartering sea for much of the morning, but good south winds. I was thankful to have been out of the Dixon Entrance. Otherwise, we’d still be waiting in Canada after having missed “the window”. The weather really socked in and soon we were sailing with no land in sight, the closest to an ocean experience as you can get on this trip. However, we were still in the shipping lanes. Colleen keeps a sharp eye out for ships and alerted me when the Alaska Ferry emerged from the rain and fog behind us. Someone snapped a photo of us from the deck and then the ship disappeared again into the fog. We kept close in to shore and picked our way up the Revillagigedo channel island-to-island, each one coming out of the fog at close hand. Finally, toward Ketchikan the weather lifted. There were a million boats and planes in the Tongass Narrows in front of town. Ketchikan is Alaska’s 4th largest city. It is a Sunday and everyone was out fishing. We took the last available slip at the Ketchikan yacht club. Various Alaskans immediately stopped by the boat and gave us everything we needed. The customs officer came down to the boat but he didn’t even get on board or ask any questions. That’s what I like about the Alaskans. He was interested in our trip and admired the boat. The judge owns the slip we’re in, and he’s out on his boat somewhere for awhile, so we can stay here. Apparently he’s quite a character. According to our neighbor three slips down, the judge did some pretty outrageous shenanigans in the courthouse. One time he was caught driving drunk, and made to appear before his own court. He found himself not guilty and cleared his name of all charges. It is good to be back in Ketchikan again.

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