The weather was supposed to be not bad in Chatham, so we poked our head out and things looked pretty calm. Foggy, but calm.
The forecast was for 15 knot winds and 3 foot seas, but it wasn’t even that. Until we got about mid channel, and then the wind picked up considerably. I think we saw 24 knots. The waves were on our bow and about 3-4 feet but not too bad. As we neared Point Gardener at the bottom of Admiralty Island we opted to go for the rougher water and cross over there rather than stay out longer in Chatham, because sooner or later we’d need to turn east, and the later we did that, the more on our beam these 3-4 (5?) foot waves would be. Having abeam seas sucks quite a bit. The boat rolls side to side and stuff you forgot to put away falls on the floor. So instead, we had about 45 minutes (felt like WAY longer) of pretty steep 5ish foot waves on our bow. Crash, crash, blam, blam. Kevin took some video while I was working through the worst part of it (I know, nice bedhead, hush.)
Ahhhh, nice and calm here in Frederick Sound, finally:
We saw a few humpbacks in Keku Strait, on our way into Kake:
We got to Kake and headed for the harbor where we could get some water, some calm, and walk to the market to get more eggs and few other things. Some photos from our walk to the store:
And sunset from the back of Airship:
In the morning we got a little bit of fuel in Kake (just enough to make sure we had plenty to get to Wrangell, since it’s about a dollar more per gallon in Kake) and then headed for Rocky Pass. We haven’t done Rocky Pass before, and are looking forward to it! Most of it isn’t a big deal…we’re timing it to get to the “Summit” just before high slack tide. The shallowest, trickiest parts are The Summit and Devil’s Elbow (a super kelpy, narrow, shallow turn to port that also happens to be missing three of its navigational aids at the moment). We had some time to kill so we hung out and drifted with some halibut lines in the water out near Pup Island, but all we caught was this shark (a spiny dogfish). We put him back:
Here are a couple of photos from Rocky Pass (more like “Kelpy Pass”…so much kelp!!):
After we were through Rocky Pass but not quite yet into Sumner Strait, I noticed some splashing up ahead. Turned out to be a humpback doing a whole lot of tail slapping (and then some fin slapping). We detoured slightly to watch the fun:
Awwww, humpback floating on his back with fins up….so cute.
We saw several more humpbacks as we entered Sumner Strait, but this lively one was the only one we photographed.
Next stop: Totem Bay!