Ketchikan, Alaska, with its 17K population, is the 4th largest city in Alaska. Alaska is a sparsely populated state with lots of open space and wildlife that area some of the state’s biggest attractions.
With Steve and I having visited 3 times previously (plus an extra one for me), we knew that we wanted to walk around town and check things out. You can visit a place like this and each time find something new. This was the first time to visit in August when the salmon are running. There is a creek in Ketchikan that offered a great opportunity to see them swimming up stream. I sometimes wonder how on earth they do it, but they breach waterfalls and all odds to get to their spawning location.
We were the only ship in town, and with under 270 passengers on board, the town seemed empty. During normal cruising times there might be 5 or 6 ships in town, and if they are at full capacity, that might nearly double the town’s population. A few of the gift shops were closed, but we managed to buy a nice t-shirt for our daughter who is dog sitting for us and some socks for her and our future daughter in law.
Another highlight for us was with very few people in town, we finally noticed the beautiful statues that are in town depicting the native people and pioneers of Alaska. The sculputre even has its own web page dedicated to telling the stories of these heroes of Alaska. You can check it out at: http://www.ketchikanstories.com/ketchicon/the-rock/front-of-the-rock
With this being a working trip for me, it meant heading back to the ship for lunch and then doing office hours and phone call in the afternoon. We did go up on deck at 4:00 to watch the ship sail away and see more of the city. We noticed that the airport is not connected to the town by bridge which means that folks have to take a ferry back and forth across the little channel to get to and from it.
This trip has been more about experiencing the ship for us rather than immersing into the destination. Please see that portion of this trip where I review the ship and also the amazing food.