Petersburg Pilot -

 
 

By Ron Loesch 

Launch ramp upgrade is needed

 


Plans for making construction improvements to the Blaquiere Point boat launch ramp will be met with outright glee by those who have used the largely unimproved site. Getting onto the Stikine River via the Blaquiere Point launch site defied the oft quoted phrase, “getting there is half the fun.”

Likewise, retrieving your boat, particularly at low tide, was an adventure.

Finding pickup trucks stuck in the mud as the tide rolled in; seeing broken down vehicles and boat trailers abandoned on the rocky slope; removing beached deadheads prior to using the ramp were all a part of, getting to the fun on the Stikine.

On those occasions when there were no mishaps on the launch ramp, lack of parking was often an issue. On a good day you could park 7-8 vehicles with trailers on the site, and the rest of the vehicles were forced to park along the berm of Mitkof Highway.

Launching always required a four-wheel drive vehicle at Blaquiere Point.

In fair weather, the Banana Point launch ramp was the alternate choice. Given the usual Southeasterly blows however, meant a bone jarring additional 5 mile run to or from the river delta in a flat-bottomed river skiff that just doesn’t ride the waves very comfortably.

For faster and safer passage to the Stikine River, the Blaquiere Point launch ramp upgrade is a project that is long past due.

Given the extreme winds that blow off the Stikine, the ramp will likely require a breakwater structure of some type, but that can certainly be phased-in as a future project.

We hope the public will comment in favor of the launch ramp re-build. Thanks to the partnership of the City of Petersburg, U.S.D.A. Forest Service, Federal Highways and the State Dept. of Natural Resources, this project is coming together soon.

It’s a worthwhile project that will enhance fishing, boating and recreation activities at the south end of Mitkof Island.

 

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