June 17, Saturday
Last night we made preparations to get back on the ferry. At 7:00 p.m. there was still a lot of daylight, and we thought . . . why not?! We hooked up the Silvermine, went to the dump station, refilled with fresh water, and drove down to the ferry dock to spend the night! Come morning – we were already in line!
At 7:00 a.m. Dave and Gail got off the ferry as we were preparing to go on. No pictures of each other this time – just a quick hug and “God Speed.” When it was our turn to drive onto the ferry, Tom was told he would need to turn around and BACK DOWN the ramp . . . and at the end of the ramp was a 90 degree turn into our parking space! Later, a lady on board the ship came up and shook Tom’s hand for his masterful backing demonstration. She had taken a video and sent a text message to all of her friends!
Meanwhile, we navigated the cafeteria line for eggs-to-order and a full breakfast line-up. Tom had slightly miscalculated the total number of hours we would be on the ferry, and when he woke up to the fact that it would be 18 . . . he booked us a berth. Probably not as big as the Silvermine, but it had a set of bunk beds and a bathroom with shower. WOW, TOM!
Our favorite place on the ferry is the outside solarium on the upper/rear deck. The covered section is heated by overhead infrared lamps (toasty warm!), and you can easily drag your chair out onto the open deck. Tom stationed here for most of the day – camera in hand.
We had port stops at Petersburg and Kake where we could get Charlie out of the Silvermine and onto a patch of grass to stretch her legs. Port stops were usually only 45 minutes long, with not many leaving or getting on!
In the evening, up on the deck, the vibration of the engines and a very slight rocking motion of the ship made it hard to not be lulled to sleep. The mountain ranges got higher and more rugged. Finally, we headed for the berth to get showers and a few hours of sleep before getting off the ferry at Sitka – at 2:00 a.m.
We don’t go camping any more . . . we go ‘streamin’ ! The “SIlvermine and His” is our 2016 23' Airstream, and ‘streamin’ is the name we use to describe our adventures. Stream along as we document everything from weekend trips to longer summer excursions and full-blown vacations. You know what they say: if you’re not in an Airstream – you’re just camping!
Tom & Ella Brown