Ed Schoenfeld, CoastAlaska

Ferry engine problems continue

Time could be running out for the fast ferry Fairweather. It’s been plagued with engine problems, which are the subject of a lawsuit against the ship’s builder. Captain John Falvey told the Marine Transportation Advisory Board today (Friday) that approval to use the engines runs out this April.

Bill signing expands Southeast State Forest

The state is setting aside more of its land for logging. Governor Sean Parnell today (Sept. 7th) signed a bill adding 23,000 acres to the Southeast State Forest. The measure nearly doubles the size of the forest, which was created in 2010. The forest is spread out, rather than in one concentrated area. The new…

Southeast cruise line plans 2012 expansion

Sitka’s home-grown cruise company has wrapped up its first season. And it’s already planning to expand, with sailings to southern Southeast starting next year. Several other small lines also plan to increase capacity in 2012. Allen Marine has offered whale-watching and other day tours for years. They’ve been popular with independent and cruise-ship tourists stopping…

Groups celebrate stream restoration

Government and nonprofit groups gathered on Prince of Wales Island recently to celebrate a pair of restoration projects. The Nature Conservancy, Trout Unlimited and the U.S. Forest Service worked together on the Harris River and Fubar Creek. Both were damaged by logging in past decades. Randy Hagenstein of The Nature Conservancy says loggers removed fallen…

Sitka students head to Kodiak for cultural exchange

A group of students from Sitka are in Kodiak this week for the second half of an exchange with the Woody Island tribe. Like many exchange programs, this one aims to foster better understanding between two cultures. But it also could help preserve traditions lost to either side, and foster healing between two cultures with…

Pilots awarded for saving damaged jet

Two Alaska Airlines pilots are being recognized for safely handling a jet last year after one of its engines exploded while taking off from Sitka. Captain Steve Cleary and First Officer Michael Hendrix won the Superior Airmanship Award from the Air Line Pilots Association Aug. 18th. Cleary and Hendrix were at the Boeing 737’s controls…

Small cruise lines send more ships to Alaska

A pair of small, high-end cruise lines are expanding their Alaska fleets. The Seattle-based companies are filling some of the void left when Cruise West went out of business about a year ago. InnerSea Discoveries already sails two small ships between Juneau and Ketchikan. Sister company American Safari sails three luxury yachts from Juneau to…

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