Alaskan Adventure in Ketchikan
Ketchikan, once the “Salmon Capital of the World,” is a fascinating town wedged inbetween the sea and the mountains. Probably the rainiest of the Alaskan towns with 167 inches of rain every year, it is the fourth largest in Alaska with a population of about 14,000. Although you cannot visit Ketchikan by car, there are 174 flights in and out of Ketchikan International Airport every week. The Alaskan Maritime Highway provides car ferries that travel from Bellingham, Washington, to Kodiak, Alaska, stopping in Ketchikan. Many cruise ships also travel the Inside Passage, calling on Ketchikan.
Sites of Ketchikan
Taking your umbrella and a warm jacket with you, for it is almost sure to rain, go for a stroll through the quaint streets of the town. Some of the streets like the waterfront, Creek Street Boardwalk, are propped up on stilts with wooden stairs. Browse through the shops where you will find Alaskan souvenirs to treasure when you return home. If you are interested in jewelry or furs, you will find a great selection of fine gems and furs. Artists and art galleries also abound here, if art is your passion.
After you have finished your shopping, visit the totem poles. Ketchikan has the world’s largest collection of standing totem poles. They are to be found in three locations: Saxman Village, Totem Bight, and the Totem Heritage Center. The Tlingit people depict their culture in the totem poles carved from the native cedar trees. Today you can visit a workshop of the Tlingit totem makers and watch as they carve the cedar into a fascinating work of art and culture.
Fishing in Ketchikan Area
Ketchikan offers the vacationing fisherman a wonderful fishing experience. Salmon is plentiful—chinook, coho, sockeye, and pink are all there for the taking. If you prefer, you can fish for halibut, red snapper, ling and rock cod in the coastal waters. In forest lakes and streams, steelhead, Dolly Varden, grayling, as well as rainbow and cutthroat trout, are plentiful.
Bear are frequently seen, both black bear and brown grizzlies, around the salmon spawning streams. Keep your eye on the sky, and you will see a bald eagle soaring majestically overhead or even perched on a church steeple. They also like to visit the streams where the salmon spawn. Moose are commonly spotted on the mainland. Look for marten, mink, and river otter along streams and lakefronts. Be sure to keep your distance from all wildlife and do not try to feed them.
Ketchikan has a number of four and five star hotels where you can have excellent lodging and meals. Among the five star hotels are George Inlet Lodge, Salmon Falls Resort,, Waypoint Inn at Herring Bay, and Black Bear Inn, Ketchikan has a wide selection of places to stay, including Best Western, Motel 8, and numerous B anb Bs.