Last night two cruise ships past by along the inlet headed out of Skagway to the Pacific Ocean. In all, four cruise ships sailed through last night, and two today, along with the one which docked here in Haines. For every dozen cruise ships that go into Skagway, Haines gets one…which does not bother us at all. It is nice seeing them sail on, but the tourist that get off of them don’t need to be dealt with by us.
Here are three of the Skagway Cruise ships above…the two last night are at the top, and you can see them in the first picture way above. The third one came through this evening. When we were in Skagway nearly seven weeks ago, we saw each of these three ships…or ones like them.
The above map is a “Kayak Route” between Skagway and Haines. The two cities are only a dozen miles apart as the crow (or should I say Raven) flies, but by car, unless you load the car on a large ferry, it is 350 driving miles away.
Above is the “Fast Ferry” which connects both cities for pedestrians only (and bicycles) which only cost $71 round trip…extra $5 for a bicycle each way. The trip takes about 40 minutes once it leaves the dock. The fast ferry also goes from either of these cities to Juno too…for $170 you can get a day package which includes a trip to a glacier outside of Juno.
We really like it here at Oceanside RV Park in Haines. It is a relaxing time. The lady who owns and operates the park is the greatest! Just after we got setup yesterday, our new neighbors Pat and Ron and their dog Murphy, came by. (That is them sitting out along the water above.) Pat came first and knocked on our open door.
"Hello, you don't know me but..." We have all been there before, right? Makes you wonder what is coming next, right?? Well here it is....
"...you don't know me, but, I have been praying for this little one (Skruffy who is at the screen door looking out at her), I have been following your travels through Alaska, we have missed each other but have been to the same places, and I am just so glad to be able meet this little one and know she is doing well...I have prayed and prayed, and when I read the "breath in, breath out" blog you posted, tears came to my eyes, I thought you had lost her, I am so glad she is ok..."She added that at first she wanted to slap me after she read the post because while reading it she thought we must have lost poor little Skruffy and she cried all the way through it…but she said she understood the emotions we were under, and really appreciated the post. Come to find out that they travel in their Roadtrek Motorhome Van, but live in a 5th wheel just 30 miles away from our condo in Florida. What a small world it is, what a nice couple they are…and Murphy too.
Haines is known for the many bald eagles that live here during the winter. Around mid-October there will be some 200-400 eagles around the Alaska Chilkat Bald Eagle Preserve near Haines. The river remains above freezing during the cold winter giving eagles access to food…lots of food when the chum salmon run in October. Some eagles stay year around, while other take off, returning in the fall. This guy above was right along the beach area in front of the RV Park.
Above is a monument to those who lost their life, mostly on the waters, a totum pole, and the cruise ship that came into Haines this morning. The wording on the monument is as follows:
"AS ALASKANS WE STRIVE TO MEET THE CHALLENGES
OF THE SOMETIMES HARSH AND UNFORGIVING
ENVIRONMENT OF THE LAST FRONTIER.
THIS MEMORIAL IS DEDICATED TO THE SPIRIT OF
OUR LOVED ONES, WHO HAVE LOST THEIR LIVES
FACING THOSE CHALLENGES IN A PLACE THEY
LOVED AND CHOSE TO CALL HOME.
THEIR VOICES ECHO ON THE WIND, THEIR SPIRITS
SOAR ABOVE THE CLOUDS AND THEIR LOVE
SURROUNDS US IN THE BEAUTY OF ALASKA.
THEY ARE GONE BUT WILL NEVER BE FORGOTTEN."
This is a shop of the small harbor…the RV park is just beyond the harbor.
Above, the boat Nightingale greats you at the entrance to the harbor (walking or driving), and right is a Keystone Driller used in the gold mining industry back in the early 1900’s.
Drove along “Beach Road” to the south of Haines and got this picture of the Taiya Inlet to the north…it is that break in the mountains in the center of the pictures. Skagway is on the northern end of this inlet, and the cruise ships come and go through this inlet, right past Haines, which is to the left just out of the picture.
As the last ship leaves from Skagway, and the ship that was here in Haines meet out in the inlet, it is time to call it a night. Well, it will be night in another few hours (10 pm and still very light outside). Tomorrow we hope to visit a few of the state parks that are in the area, weather allowing of course.