Day 20 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Thoms Place/Quiet Harbor to Wrangell

Airship and Free Solo left Quiet Harbor this morning after an early night (which may or may not have included a cocktail after yesterday’s alternator drama) and headed for Wrangell. Earlier in the morning there was a solo humpback hanging out at the entrance to the harbor, but we didn’t get any photos. Conditions were calm and gray along our route around the north end of Etolin Island, through Chichagof … Read more

Day 19 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Ketchikan to Thoms Place/Quiet Harbor

We awoke to a beautiful morning in Ketchikan. Much nicer than the rain and wind we’ve seen the last couple of days. It was time to untie the lines and get the party moving northward. Fate and boats had some interesting plans in store for us today, though. In Clarence Strait near Caamano Point we spotted a very large orca that at first we thought might be with a baby, … Read more

Days 16-17-18 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Foggy Bay to Ketchikan

Day 16 (Friday) – The wind had picked up quite a bit overnight while we were anchored in Foggy Bay. We also had some RAIN for the first time this whole trip last night…that’s certainly a record. We’ve never gone this long with no rain at all. We left Foggy Bay and had some 1-3 ft chop immediately, along with westerly swells. A little rolly, but not too bad, especially … Read more

Day 15 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Kelp Passage to Foggy Bay

We left Kelp Passage near first light for our Dixon Entrance crossing. The weather forecast looked excellent — wind NW 15 diminishing to light early, seas 1 meter. We popped up early to check the 4AM update to be sure nothing had changed for the sinister overnight. It looked even a little better, and a soft fog layer confirmed that the air wasn’t moving much. On big crossings, fog is … Read more

Day 14 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Lowe Inlet to Kelp Passage

Before we left Lowe inlet this morning, Airship pulled our crab traps and had a couple of nice keepers – after several consecutive days of empty traps. There will be crab dip tonight. We left Lowe early to find the calmer winds in Grenville Channel, and to catch the currents at a more favorable time. The wind part worked. The currents – not so much. Grenville currents are complicated and … Read more

Day 13 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Khutze Inlet to Lowe Inlet

We left the Khutze Inlet anchorage early (5:30am-early) to beat the increasing winds that were forecast. Conditions were calm calm calm. By the time we reached Whale Passage and Wright Sound, the wind had picked up a bit (10-20kts from the NW) and we had about a one foot chop. Quite pleasant! Additionally, we think every single boat at one point had Dall’s porpoises surfing their bow. (That must really … Read more

Days 11-12 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Rescue Bay to Khutze Inlet

This morning the plan was to transit Jackson Narrows about an hour before low slack…giving us a little more water under the keel and maybe only a slight bit of current against us, but we actually had a little current with us, so apparently it had already turned. We all made it through just fine and it was a fun piloting challenge! The rest of our cruise today through Jackson … Read more

Day 10 | 2023 Flotilla to Alaska | Shearwater to Rescue Bay

We left Shearwater this morning just before 10am. Timing today was for Perceval Narrows, but the swell we expected in Seaforth Channel was almost nonexistent and the wind still hadn’t picked up much by the time we arrived. We arrived at Perceval Narrows with about 3kts of current helping us along. And just after that, Pacific white-sided dolphins took turns surfing every boat’s bow wake. The wind kicked up early … Read more