We awoke today to a beautiful sunny day; the high ended up in the mid-60s. It was an easy decision to go to the office of Allen Marine Tours to see if we could get a ticket for one of their catamaran tours to Misty Fjords. They had room for the afternoon.
While waiting for the tour time, we wandered around the Creek Street area of Ketchikan, glancing at the art and gift shops and weaving our way through the crowds. (There were four huge cruise ships in town.) Creek Street and Stedman Street are on the national historic register — some interesting buildings with interesting history, most notably as brothels and speakeasies. The tour of Dolly’s House (the home of Ketchikan’s most famous madam) is supposed to be so bawdy that it is not recommended for children; we did not go inside in spite of our age.
Our trip into Misty Fjord was perfect. Just to be out on the water on such a lovely day would have been enough, but the sheer rocky sides of the fjord were amazing. We saw humpback whales and eagles, but the best were the Dall Porpoises. They came to play in front of our boat. From the front you could see them shooting across our path at water level, then they would dive again. Their markings, black with white patches which make them look much like baby orcas, also make them stand out in the clear waters of the fjord. In addition to the wildlife, there were numerous sightseeing planes over head and taking off and landing on the water.
In addition to the scenery, the tour was very entertaining and relaxing. The rest of the 30 or so travelers were from the enormous Zeiderdam cruise ship. Most were on a combination bus – train – boat tour out of Vancouver. We all enjoyed excellent narration by a naturalist, hot drinks, and snacks of clam chowder and smoked salmon. Couldn’t have been a nicer day.
The lovely weather held into the evening so we built a fire and grilled steak, asparagus, potatoes and sweet potatoes.