Thursday, July 16, 2015

Ketchikan to Kasaan Bay 7/12/15

Yes Bay to Ketchikan to Kasaan Bay

After a great few days in Yes Bay our trip took us to a quiet anchorage across from Yes Bay on the Revillagigedo Island side of the Behm Channel.  Plans were to anchor at Naha Bay but NaNa was the word.  The head of the bay was steep and narrow with very little room to swing.  Even with settled conditions we did not want to chance it.  The "float" that we hoped would lead us ashore to a lagoon was damaged and not connected to the shore.  The only way to enter the lagoon was by dinghy and with the tide race over 2' we would have to stay in Roosevelt Lagoon for almost 10 hours to have slack tide going in and out.

 The  Navy was conducting testing along the shore and limited access was available to Helm Bay.   We asked for clearance but were directed almost 10 miles out of the way to avoid the test area.  In an 8 Kt boat this is a delay of an hour and a half both into and out of the bay.  

With no luck fishing settled on an anchorage near Moser Bay in a small unidentified bite. It was great with good views, no traffic and little to no wind.  Since WORKNOT was just about an hour and a half to Ketchikan next morning we returned to Ketchikan for some more fishing supplies, groceries and propane.  The day began rainy and it continued to be overcast and drizzly the next few days.

With our errands run (except for the propane) we left early the next morning for Kassan Bay.  A fairly short ride across Clarence Strait.  Winds were blowing against the current and we found ourselves in short, choppy 3-4 ft seas right on the beam.  A reminder that we were in real water after days and days of flat clam seas in the protected parts of Behm Channel.   Our choice for an anchorage was Happy Harbor on Kasaan Island.  Very well protected but only enough water at the entrance to come and go at mid tide or better.  Our entry registered less than 2 ft under the keel but at least we were on a rising tide.  We could escape if we got grounded.  Just off the narrow entrance to the lagoon was a telephone booth.  Like most the phone was missing.  There must be a story to this item being on a small island with no roads or other access other than boat.

Guide books claimed the floats at Kasaan Village, a small native community across from our anchorage were in poor repair and anchoring was marginal.  Much to our surprise we found very nice, new floats with excellent walkways at Kasaan.  There are many of these high quality floats and most are funded by a mixture of state and local agencies.  Alaska has money and seems to be willing to spend it.  Wonder how long this will last at $40/barrel oil? 

The village has an active carver shed and is restoring a native building at the end of a very maintained trail along the shore.

Totems are scattered along the trail and around the small village.   Since it was Sunday we missed the carvers at work but could see some of the craftsmanship they use to build the totems and other articles from native wood. 

No mistaking where you are in Kasaan

1 comment:

  1. Dear Gale, I grew up in Happy Harbor on Kasaan Island! We left in about 1973 or 74. I have been trying to get back there and have since found out that Boots, the lady of the harbor and caretaker of the abandoned logging camp there, had passed away in the mid 90s, but as for the other 5 families that lived in Happy Harbor, I know nothing! Any help you could give me would be great! Lat and Long would be ideal but I'd be happy with any info or pictures you took to help me with a book I'm writing about our childhood and being the children of a commercial fisherman! Please feel free to privately email me at Thank you! I really enjoyed reading your blog!