Sunday, June 12, 2011

Finally, We're Cruising

The green line with arrows shows our route up Discovery Channel as we begin the trip.

June 4
Discovery Harbor Marina to Farewell Harbor
0650 departure.

Bleakney Pass was active with a 5-knot current running against us as we entered. Whirlpools formed all over the place, but the Capt quickly moved us to the far shore to minimize any twisting and turning. We focused on suddenly turbulent water ahead. It wasn’t a whirlpool, so what caused all of the splashing?  A sea lion surfaced with a salmon flopping in its mouth. Two seagulls circled around his head and harassed him with no effect. Suddenly an eagle swooped down and grabbed a piece of the fish. The sea lion lunged upward after the eagle, thrusting the upper third of his body into the air before crashing back into the water. But the eagle pulled up sharply, soaring away as he used his beak to tear into that strip of fish held in his talons. Where did the birds come from so quickly? All of the action took place within seconds, not minutes, as this drama unfolded.

Several cruise ships traveled through Bleakney Pass at slack current, without the excitement of any whirlpools. I wonder if current impacts a huge ship in the turns through a tight passage. Here’s a view of the Celebrity Century seen from our inside anchorage in Farewell Harbor.

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