Sunday, July 13, 2014

Time to Reset

Not being particularly attuned to entrapment on a confined vessel with thousands of people, holiday on a mega cruise liner has not been high on my bucket list.  That said, there are distinct advantages to traveling up the inside passage via ferry.  For one thing it helps reset your clock, not just to Alaska time (yes, they have their very own), but to that of the tides and the light and the weather.  Attune-ment takes time and the monotonous drone of the ferry engines acts as a pacemaker. (and provides white noise so you don't hear all those people harping at their children, stop running, don't do that, sit Down!  A few restless souls did join me on the outer wind swept rail, letting the rain slap our faces instead of the voices inside.

Endless shorelines, a refreshing damp mist, the way real air should smell and wildlife that we disturb more or less along the way all mark time passing. (two nights and a bit over 2 days to Petersburg)  Pacific white sided dolphin surf our wake, orca & humpback blow fish breath on us.  A black bear swam all the way to the middle of the channel to meet us (and then was turned away).  I'll remember those powerful strokes when I'm in my kayak and he has a say about who passes where and when.

Near Wrangell, where the Stikine River meets the ocean there is a prominent "halocline" caused by the dramatic difference in salinity as fresh water meets salt.

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