May 2, 2013 | Vol. 39, No. 18

Taku Rock Removed from channel in Narrows

June 14, 1963, Petersburg Press

Taku rock was removed from the navigation channel in Wrangell Narrows late yesterday afternoon on the high tide, according to A. J. Trones, local contractor. Work was completed by 8 p.m. last night.

The rock was named locally after the ferry Taku struck it when entering Wrangell Narrows in April and had to return to the shipyard for repairs. It had been suggested that the rock had drifted in on an iceberg and dropped when the ice melted. Trones said the rock was of a type foreign to the adjacent area of the narrows where it was found.

Cliff Fenn, inspector for the Corps of Engineers, says rock samples will be sent to a laboratory to determine the source of the rock. Fenn said the rock is not exposed at low tide in its new position but is 500 to 600 yards away from the main channel and on the beach behind a point between Sasby Point and Prolwey Rock.

He said the rock appeared to drivers to be about six to seven feet high and was triangular shaped about ten by five by nine feet.

Trones using two boats, two divers, a barge, and inch to inch and a half size steel cable, worked two days putting a sling around the rock and tying it to the barge. As the tide raised the barge, the rock was lifted and moved toward shore. Trones reports they lost the rock twice but on the third try moved it.

Working with Trones on the job were divers George Parkhurst, Juneau; Frank Sarber, Petersburg; and Fred Magill, Warren Burrell and John E. Longworth. The job took two days as divers could work only at slack water because of currents in the narrows.

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