Inside Passage — Ketchikan to Juneau

Leaving Ketchikan, we had a front-row seat to the two most common ways of getting places in Alaska: boat and plane. Leaving Ketchikan via the Tongass Narrows, we saw multiple ships plus a simultaneous departure and arrival of seaplanes. For a town of only 8,000 (the 6th largest in the state of Alaska), things sure were busy.

The voyage from Ketchikan to Juneau was extremely scenic with snow covered mountain peaks rising from the deep blue ocean. Wildlife including whales, seals, and gulls were readily visible from the balcony of our cabin.

The real show began when the sun started to set and the sky was almost literally on fire. Due to the high latitude, sunset was around 10 to 11 o’clock at night. I will apologize in advance for the number of photos I’m including of the sunset; as a photographer you become very “tuned in” to subtle color variations. This sunset was anything but subtle and I couldn’t help but keep pressing the shutter release. At some point, I need to go see the aurora borealis (“northern lights”). These are active during the summer in Alaska, but are all but invisible due to the short 2-3 hour “night”; winter is much better for viewing the aurora borealis.

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