All aboard who’s going aboard

The Tustumena docks at Pier 1 on Monday. Saturday’s ferry departure is the last from Kodiak until Oct. 29. (Drew Herman photo)

Kodiak begins one of two scheduled gaps in ferry service after the Tustumena leaves Kodiak’s Pier 1 Saturday.

Kodiak will not see any service until Oct. 29 when the Kennicott makes a stop in Kodiak.

A longer ferry service dry spell begins Nov. 3 and continues until the Tustumena returns Dec. 11.

The schedule gaps are a result of ferry maintenance work in Kodiak and in Southeast Alaska.

The Tustumena is out of commission this fall because it needs a propulsion shaft safety inspection, which requires completely removing the shaft from the ferry. The Kenicott is being moved to Southeast to cover for the Taku and Matanuska, which are also in the shop.

Alaska Marine Highway System announced Oct. 6 the early release of the 2011 summer sailing schedule, with sailings to the Southeast community of Gustavus for the first time in the system’s history.

The ferry LeConte will provide service to and from Gustavus beginning in May and continuing through Aug. 31. The ferry Aurora will sail between Juneau and Gustavus Sept. 5, 7, 12 and 14.

Another new feature is cross-Gulf service on the Kennicott from Bellingham, Wash., to Anchorage via the Port of Whittier every other week. This itinerary includes stops in Ketchikan, Juneau, Whittier and continuing on to Southwest Alaska.

The fleet’s largest ferry, the Columbia, will continue weekly service between Bellingham and Southeast Alaska.

The summer 2011 schedule is now available online at www.ferryalaska.com.

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