Fast ferry returns to Lynn Canal for the holidays

The fast ferry M/V Fairweather steams through Chatham Strait in 2011.

The fast ferry M/V Fairweather steams through Chatham Strait in 2011. (Photo by Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska.)

The Alaska Marine Highway System is bringing a fast ferry back to Lynn Canal next month to fill a gap created by repairs to three other vessels in December.

“The marine highway system has been working for weeks to find a way to cover that holiday service gap,” said Alaska Marine Highway System spokeswoman Aurah Landau. “We just received (Coast Guard) approval to run the Fairweather and the Malaspina.”

The Fairweather will make runs between Juneau, Haines and Skagway four times a week between Dec. 7 and 30. It will also make two trips to Angoon in December.

The Fairweather is a high-speed catamaran that makes trips in about half the time of the rest of the fleet.  But cost cutting has left its future uncertain.

The Malaspina is scheduled to be out of dry dock in the second week of December. It will then make three runs to Hoonah and Gustavus.

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