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Transportation off the 'Rock'

By A. M. Johnson


September 25, 2019
Wednesday PM


Let's talk leaving the 'Rock' under the various modes of transportation available and estimated cost related to same.

I find myself in the need of medical appointments in Seattle that encompassed a period of time that warrants the taking of our auto for transportation to these medical appointments as well, to visit various family members in the neighboring states.

With the new, pricing formula for the Alaska Marine Highway (Ferries) in effect I wandered in to the local terminal office to inquire on a very early booking to avoid the penalty pricing of the current detrimental formula only a government entity could create. 

For myself, my wife, a 17' car and a four berth room, (No I don't need four berths, however at our age the top bunk is out of consideration!) the one way cost is North of $2100.00. Double that to return plus meals so you are looking at $4500.00. Then to our dismay, I would have to book a week early to allow meeting the medical appointment date(s) and on the return, spend an extra week in Seattle, as the ferry would be sitting idle or other wise employed.

I will leave you to consider all the extra incurred cost to meet this situation. So- the ferry is out.

Next I contacted Alaska Marine Lines inquiring about shipping our car South- North of $950.00 South bound and North of $1100.00 North bound for a total of around $2200.00. Then the round trip airline tickets will be approximately $600.00. So the total for this transaction is approximately $2800.00.

The third option is to fly round trip estimated, $600.00, rent a car off the airport area which has been found for around $20.00 per day with insurance. As we will be away  for a month, the rental will be $6-650.00 for a total of near about $1300.00.

I point these options out regarding continuing with a ferry to Prince Rupert B.C. to allow options on how long to drive, hotel stops, and whether or not we want to be hasty or leisure in a drive day. 

Not knowing the current Prince Rupert rate I will guess that a car and two passengers will cost somewhere close to $250.00 one way. 

In our case it will require two full days plus, of driving to make Seattle.  First stop at Prince George for a $100.00 Canadian hotel rate, maybe $30.00 meals and tips and a $125-135.00 fuel charge and we would spend the second night at Harrison Hot Springs for a $160.00 Canadian hotel rate. And $100.00 for meals plus an additional $125.00 fuel charge which will take us to Seattle. So our total one way estimated via Prince Rupert is  $890.00 or round it off to  $1000.00. Double this for a $2,000.00 vs: $4500.00 Bellingham round trip.

The arming of the customs is a convenient 'coat hanger' after near 60 years not armed, as is the ongoing  'yakamoshy' over repairs to the Prince Rupert terminal. Both of these issues have work arounds given the desire, Hell, ask President Donald J. Trump,(How I love typing that name!) he gets things done!!

Being a Kay-hi graduate, I may have missed one or two fiscal formulas regarding this submission, but I can add 2+2=5 with the best of the State wizards who worked this system out.

In terms of making the decision to drop Prince Rupert. I can't change it, I can't fight it, but I sure can smell it.


Ketchikan, Alaska

PS:  A handful of thanks to Representative Ortiz for his efforts on the issue. Good Job, I am sure Senator Stedman has a 'Secret' plan that he will make public as some late date.


Editor's Note:

The text of this letter was NOT edited by the SitNews Editor.


Received September 25, 2019 - Published September 25, 2019

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