This is the house I boated past, kayaked past and flew over for twenty years waiting for it to come on the market. And when it did, I didn't have the money. I had to wait another five years and after 45 days of loan closing chaos it became mine.
And I have loved it ever since. For me starting Alaska Remote Lodges was about allowing others to really experience what I consider to be an authentic slice of the Southeast Alaskan life style.
It's on an island. There are no roads. And right there is where life changes. Gone is the noise, the traffic and interruptions. It's just quiet and swapping a car for a boat slows everything way down, including your blood pressure.
And of course there's the fishing. Just so much easier when the boat is already in the water waiting at the dock. Ten minutes to prime salmon fishing, 15 to crabbing and 45 to some great Halibut holes.
In letting my house out with a boat I wanted guests to be able to own their trip with no schedules, no stress and making it what they want it to be. It's a private home with a boat to call your own for an unforgettable few days or more.
And I am on site to support you. Maybe that's an initial conversation about fishing locations and details and you want to be left alone.
Or I am on hand if needed. To show you how to take care of cleaning and cooking Dungeness Crab, edible plants and berries, or other more pressing issues such as a down rigger ball finding a rock. It's pretty much your choice...
I am here to support you in making your trip one to remember and ulitmately one you will come back to again and again.
All Alaskans have a story.....
Kim Kirby came to America from England with a one way ticket in 1986 to find two aunts; one on her father's side and one on her mother's. They could not have been more different, one on the west coast, one on the east. One a university professor, the other a former trapeze artist for Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus. The only thing they shared in common was not wanting to be found.
If her own family wasn't interested the extended family of the circus was. The day she found her mother's sister in Los Angeles, The Greatest Show on Earth arrived in town. Deciding to follow in her aunt's footsteps Kim's joined up. Traveling and living on the Ringling Brothers train was the best way to see America's wild and remote country. That was the upside. The downside; where the train parked in the big cities for a week at a time brought an understanding of a world on the wrong side of the tracks.
A few years on she picked up James Michener's book 'Alaska'. In a matter of weeks she quit the show, bought a Dodge Tradesman van and headed north from Philadelphia. The old van had no stereo and hedging against an old engine she loaded up with tools, repair manuals and stashed cans of chili and stew in a survival box under the seat. Strapping a bicycle to the back as added insurance she made a rule of not using any freeways. Driving across the plains of Canada and up the Alaska Highway she arrived in the 49th state a month after leaving the City of Brotherly Love..
A summer of exploring around the interior came to a rapid halt as snow started falling in August. Heading south towards the Inside Passage Kim took the Alaska Marine Highway on a two week long trip through the islands of the Alexander Archipelago. It was another pivotal experience. Back stateside and broke the only thought was how to get back to the land of rain forest islands, glaciers, whales and fish.
Sharing a loft apartment above a horse stable in California she landed a job with a kayaking company in San Diego and after a winter of working in the store and helping guide trips into Baja California she bought a kayak and headed back to Alaska. Putting on the water in Juneau and paddling south she took three months to explore the Inside Passage. Landing in Ketchikan with exhausted funds she took a job fall fishing for salmon and when the boat went back south to Seattle she went with it. Out to sea on a moonless night the northern lights danced across the horizon. It was the day the hook was set.
Returning to Alaska by kayaking from Seattle the next year she bought a home and opened the doors as a Bed and Breakfast and started Southeast Sea Kayaks offering kayaking trips to cruise ship visitors. When the fall came she took a job commercial shrimp fishing. Working on the back deck pulling pots and packing shrimp in remote bays cemented her love of the fishing life and being on the water.
A few years on an opportunity came to buy a home on Pennock Island. Just a short boat ride from Ketchikan it offered the best of having a town nearby without the roads and busyness. The house was in sad shape and after three years of remodeling, dock repairs and upgrades she opened her doors to share the world she loved. Life at the water's edge and a boat to fish.
Since then many fishermen have graced her home and enjoyed the best of Alaska by captaining their own fishing adventure without any schedule other than the tide.
You are encouraged to come and make your own stories!