The Wrangell Narrows - In the FOG!
Trish and I had been looking forward to our transit of the very narrow “Wrangell's Narrows”.
We had been told of the beautiful scenery and small communities that lined the banks and with local knowledge indicating a 5am start to make the most of the strong south going current we went to bed early in anticipation of the day to come.
Sadly we woke to thick fog, what we British call a “real pea souper” with visibility less than 20 metres. What to do? The channels were very well marked and the charts completely accurate and so I decided to crack on! Tricia did voice the wisdom of this decision and suggested a more cautious approach would be to wait for the fog to burn off.
If only I had listened! I like a bit of excitement, the adventure of the uncertain but once again I expended far more nervous energy than can be good for my ageing ticker.
Without the consistency of an autopilot and having to allow for the GPS time lag of the course indicator we found ourselves side on in the channel more than once having no visual markers to use.
Channel markers slid by unseen as did three or four boats that showed up on AIS, passing less than 25 metres away but could neither be seen or heard in the fog.
With less than 3 miles of the 20 mile channel to negotiate the fog did finally burn off and we could remove our hearts from our mouths and relax.