Coming into the Country: All vessels arriving in Alaska from British Columbia must clear Customs and Border Protection in Ketchikan before proceeding elsewhere. Formalities for Jupiter and crew were easily completed by phone after securing our berth on the docks of Doyon’s Misty Fjords busy seaplane operation.
Full Disclosure: Everything we have learned and are reporting about Ketchikan has been gleaned from conversation with Yellow Taxi drivers, all of whom are perceptive and outspoken; many of whom must be sourdough millionaires resulting from the usurious fares.
Town life is dominated by arrivals and departures of these massive floating hotels and their denizens, which can at once double or triple the town’s population. Fortunately they do not overnight in Ketchikan.
- 4 to 7: number of daily cruise ship arrivals in summer
- 7,000 to 17,000: number of people arriving per day
- 56: number of jewelry stores in town
- 9/25/18: next date without a cruise ship arrival
- 12.5 feet: annual rainfall
Meeting Needs: Ketchikan might not have everything a boat crew wants, but it certainly has what it needs: XTRATUF boots, foul-weather gear, provisions, hardware, foul-weather gear, hearty food, marine stores, PeaceHealth Medical Center, and foul-weather gear.
“I’ll be glad when this hot weather ends” – local wearing the universal woolly hat (the high today was 54 degrees).
“I’m gonna try to catch the tide over the bar tomorrow” – fisherman in the canned foods aisle at Safeway.
“Its like living in a town with a dual personality” – Bookseller at Parnassus Bookstore on the difference between summer and winter.
“Everybody who lives here loves it here, but we have a dark side” – Donovan, mellow Yellow Taxi driver