Day 28 overall, Day 21 afloat, Foggy Bay to Ketchikan (6-19-15)

Blog Reader, Blog Reader, Blog Reader, good morning this is Tammy at the Blog and this is it, barring any problems we arrive in Ketchikan today.

Pictures included :

Picture 1: Two enormous marker buoys. In the water only only see the top part.

Picture 2, 3: Two different pictures of the Princess Cruise Ship which illustrates the size and distance elements I explained below.

Picture 4: Andrew in a Dinghy

Picture 5: Norwegian Pearl. She looks like she is headed right for us but she is actually miles away from us and headed on a course that misses us by a couple of miles. Amazing.

Picture 6: A nice photos of a fishing boat we saw in Dixon Entrance. This is a good example of a seiner towing his skiff. Love this picture and the light and I think it describes many evenings in a fisherman’s life.

Weather today:

Overcast , light winds, 1-2 foot seas.


36 NM day. With a wonderfully feeling of achievement and a twinge of sadness we will leave Foggy Bay and head for Ketchikan. Once we arrive we will all go our separate ways. This part of the trip has been amazing and we will miss our flotilla partners. I know we will see these wonderful people again sometime! Today we will exit Foggy Bat and turn north towards Mary Island being careful to give room to De Long Island and Black Rock. What I noticed this morning on the way out of Foggy was at low tide you are actually trapped in one end of the Bay until high tide comes back around again. Amazing how much the tides and currents effect this part of the world.

We made a bit of a late start because Richard the owner of the other Willard, Lilliana stopped by to take a closer look at the Domino. He has owned a couple of Willard boats and he is quite keen on them and I certainly know why after this trip.

As we came out of the opening to Foggy Bay we say spouts and slowed down to watch a couple of humpbacks playing at the opening of the bay. They come so close to the boat and they are massive! You really have no choice but to slow down and sometimes just stop the engine and go into neutral because you would not want to harm them or the boat.

There is always something to do on the boat and today on the way out to open water Andrew decided to take a look at the pump out on the septic. On these long voyages you are permitted and really have no choice but to pump out into the ocean. You must be more than 3 miles off shore to use your macerator pump. We realized after 21 days that when he thought that he was pumping out he was actually doing nothing because he had not turned the valve in the V-berth. Soooooo that could have been a really stinky and messy problem if we had not caught that on time! What can we say, we are new this type of boating! (Secretly, it was kinda funny that Andrew thought he had been pumping out all this time though!)

We actually had phone service again so we quickly called US Customs in Ketchikan (250-627-3003) and ask for permission to stay overnight in Foggy Bay from Prince Rupert and on the way to Ketchikan. We reached an agent and they gave accepted our request and gave us clearance for Foggy Bay for one night. If you don’t call and just stay in Foggy Bay which is actually in the US again you have broken the law and are subject to jail, fines and marks on your permanent record that could create travel issue so of course we are obeying the rules of the water and taking care of the customs business appropriately.

We dodged the Norwegian Pearl on our way into Ketchikan. I was at the Helm and that always makes me a little nervous but when you are at the Helm you have to just stay calm and navigate! You get used to those bug ships after a while and you don’t really see them very often. The funny thing is that distance on water is very deceiving. Scale and distance can be very deceiving without a known reference point. It always seems like the ships are closer than they are or that they are headed right for you but thanks to Kevin we have become quite good at using our Furuno Radar. We now know how to draw the electronic bearing lines on the target so that we can watch if the ship is relative to us on a constant bearing with decreasing range. Essentially it helps us make sure that the large ship’s captain is awake and steering and not relying only on the auto pilot. If their course continue to be directed at us then we can radio them and agree on a plan to avoid them and hopefully their wake as well. The wake of one of those ships give this 40’ vessel quite a toss and roll.

First stop in Ketchikan is at the fuel dock. We called Customs and they are sending an agent to meet us at the Petro Marine Fuel dock. Kind of them to meet us while we are getting fuel. I guess they do it all the time and it is probably convenient for them as well. Sam was kind enough to arrange commercial pricing for the flotilla. A very nice customs officer asked us to identify our ship and then asked permission to board. (I am not sure he really needs permission but nice of him to ask.) We filled out the paperwork and went through the boat book. We were done in no time and then we fueled the boat.

We arrived and were offered a slip in North, pier 13. The Domino required 201.22 gallons of diesel at a cost of $563.56. We also filled the propane tanks foe he kitchen and that was a whopping $7.70 and the tank was only half empty. So we cooked like crazy in that little kitchen and only used 2.50 gallons of propane.

Kevin and Sam met us at the dock for the last time and helped us tie up the Domino. Dan met us at the dock and he and Andrew quickly went off to radio shack. Since Dan convinced Andrew that I needed a Scotty Pot puller, Eileen convinced Dan that they needed a long range wifi connectivity antenna. There were packages waiting for both boats at the copy shop and we are all very excited. We have to hook them up right away though because sadly they are turning around tomorrow and heading back to Washington. I am the proud owner of a new pot puller for my shrimp pot and crab trap and I could not be more excited. Who needs a husband that buys you flowers, I will take a man that buys me crab traps and pot pullers any day. Thank you Carol!

Dan also left me with a cup of the sour dough starter and I will carry on making sour dough on this trip. Where will I find the time!

As much as I hate it, I headed to the laundry to wash about 3 week worth of clothing and bedding. Well, the good news is that you sort it through it all into a couple of machines and then dump them in a couple of driers and you are done in about 1.5 hours. It takes me days to do laundry at home one load at a time!

When I got back to the boat with laundry there was a commercial fishing boat in the next slip. The crew were cleaning up on deck. One of the guys on the boat came walking down our dock slip and asked about the Domino. Amazing the people that come to admire her because she is a really pretty boat. Stephen was a marine refrigeration repair guy that the captain had flown down to Ketchikan to work on their fish hold refrigeration. I mentioned that I would love to see one of these commercial fish boats. Andrew showed up and we talked for a little while longer and then he headed back to the boat for dinner. We got ready for dinner and were about to walk up the dock to crab a cab when Stephen whistled and called me over. You know one of those great two fingers in the mouth and then you blow through them and get this great burst of whistle. I can’t do which is why I admire it so much. I must learn to whistle like that next. Anyway, Stephen introduced me to the captain and the captain welcomed me onboard, introduced me to the crew and then offered me a tour of the engine room and the fish hold. I was so excited, I am not even sure that Andrew knew where I had gotten off to because I hadn’t stopped for fear that the offer would go away. Amazing the machinery it takes to run a fish boat. I always thought that most fish boats had two engines but that apparently is not always the case. They have generations and spares for all the refrigeration needed for the fish hold. They carry enormous amounts of fuel and are offshore for days at a time. This fishing boat was a seiner (I am going to go into some detail very soon about the different fisherman) but for now a seiner carries a skiff (a second little boat with a very powerful engine. When they get out to fish waters the skiff takes one end of a long net and he drives away from the boat and drags the net out to the back of the boat (not sure how far but it usually looks like about 400-600 yards). The other end of the net is of course attached to the boat. The skiff then drags the net forward and back to the boat and presumably captures fish as the net passes through the water. Now, I should say here, that I am of course no expert and these comments are from me watching in my own boat. I am going to have to volunteer to cook aboard one of these boats and get a real view of what is really going on when they take those nets out. Andrew joined me in the boat tour and then we thanks them and headed out to the Bara Harbor restaurant to meet the group but selfishly I really wanted to stay and hear some real fish tails and learn more about seining. Once again I say that fisherman and some of the nicest people I have ever met!

This is the Domino on channel 68 searching for a short term assignment on a fishing boat because I simply have to see how all these guys and gals of the sea earn a living!

  • Left Dock/Weighed anchor: Anchor up at 9:40 AM
  • Cruise Log: 36 Nautical Miles
  • Weather Conditions: Overcast and light wind. 1-2 seas which is calm in Dixon Entrance!
  • Navigational Obstacles: Whales
  • Wildlife Sighting: Humpback Whales
  • Arrived Dock/Dropped anchor: Docked at 3:20 PM
  • Slip for the night: $36 a night with power
  • Time today Helm for TEA: 5 hrs
  • Time today Helm for ACA: 1 hrs
  • Lessons learned: I took over the Helm today and asked Andrew to go into the Galley and make us lunch underway. He made spaghetti and I loved it because I didn’t have to cook it! He should spend more time cleaning up and cooking and I should take more of the time at the Helm and funny because he agree. You see when you are not at the Helm you can nap, take picture, BLOG!
  • Fun Meals underway: Spaghetti made by Andrew!

Leave a Reply