Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966

 
 

Proud to see Haines boat at Celebration

 


I was very proud of the Haines/Klukwan canoe, when they came into the 2014 Celebration. I am just old enough to remember the last of the old-time dugouts on the Chilkat River. Dan Katzeek had the last really large canoe, in the 30-foot range. There were two of the large, 50 to 60-foot range, Haida-style canoes left, one at Skondoo’s grave, and one, even larger, on the spit, just west of the fish camp at the corner at 4 Mile Haines Highway.

  I came across it while hunting rabbits, about 1954. The bottom was rotted away, but the stem and stern were still erect. Two thwarts had holes to step masts. A sailboat rudder had been attached, and the iron fittings were still on the stern. The rudder was laying on the ground. The sides were 3 to 4 inches thick, at the gunnels. It was an awesome sight, for a kid who loved boats, especially canoes. I have always wondered how many gallons of Chilkat eulachon oil was traded to the Haidas to buy her new!

  Wayne Price did a masterful job on his canoe. I could not see an unfair line, or kink, in any of her curves or lines, and very superior workmanship throughout her hull, even looking with a boat-builder’s practiced eye.

  She really stood out among the others. Great job!

  Wayne Alex