Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Adventures in Alaska: Day Twelve: Ketchikan, AK

While each of the last few cities were gray and gloomy, the majority of the rain held off until we arrived in Ketchikan.  This wasn't surprising since Ketchikan receives an average of 154 inches of rain each year (where as Albany receives an average of 39 inches.)

I decided to wander the streets of Ketchikan before my dad's and mine trip for salmon fishing.  What was walk-able by cruise ship, has been turned into another town filled with souvenirs.  While cute,  my guess is further away from the docks I would find a more authentic neighborhood. I kept wandering around until I found a few totem poles.  These ones have been recreated of the originals, but impressive.  I'm not sure why totem poles aren't more common.  Some represent families, others legends, overall I'm a geek and think they are completely fascinating.
I took a picture of this cause of the bouy's and later was told it was in the deadliest catch....

After my tour of town,  I met up with my dad to go salmon fishing.  Initally there were 38 other people signed up.  My dad was SO bummed that we were going to be on a huge boat with so many other people.  As we waited, half the group left with one guide and we continued to wait for instructions.  Once we made it to the dock, we split even more and ended up in a boat with 5 other people.  

Rather than each of us standing around with one pole, they rigged up 6 poles.  Set at different depths.  Each time we had a fish on the line, we took turns to reel in.  I was the last to go, mainly because I wasn't going to be heartbroken if I didn't catch a fish.  Both my father and I were able to catch a Pink Salmon.

After we caught ours, we were hoping to for one guy who had caught a lingcod to catch a salmon, but despite waiting around and fooling with the depths, the one gentlemen went without.  Dad and I offered him one of ours since we could only  take one back to the ship, but he declined.  Along the ride back to the docks, our captain whistled to a nearby bald eagle to get it's attention and then tossed a smaller fish that was caught in for him.  It was incredible to see it come so close.  While I'm fairly certain what she did isn't considered legal, it was damn impressive to watch.

We were able to have one fish tagged and sent to the cruise ship and the next day the chef prepared a special dinner for us. We are unsure of whose fish it was and since we both caught one, we both can make claims that it was our fish. Its also possible they just made us any fish dinner but we can at least pretend we ate something that we caught.

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