Monday, August 4, 2014

Our Washington State Ferries

(Thanks to Google Images)

The Evergreen State is nearly bisected by Puget Sound and our Washington State Ferries (WSF) are the means to keep us all in touch and getting to where we want to go. 

Created in June 1951, the ferries now boast 10 routes and 20 terminals with 450 departures every day.

The WSF fleet is always being upgraded. The newest ship joined the fleet in March 2014, two years after the first weld on the ship. According to the shipbuilder, Vigor Industrial, a total of 2200 tons of steel went into the ferry. The ship is 362' long and stretches 83' wide. Named the Tokitae, it can hold 144 cars and more than 1500 passengers.  Each propeller on the Tokitae is nearly 12' in diameter and weighs 12,960 pounds. The cost of building the Tokitae was $117 million dollars. 

The name for Washington's newest ferry comes from a Coastal Salish or Chinook jargon greeting that means "nice day, pretty colors," and was used when members of different tribes met one another while traveling or trading. 

Look for the Tokitae the next time you have occasion to ride on one of our Washington state ferries. 

(Thanks to the magazine Discover Kitsap 2014 for information for this article. I picked it up on the ferry!)

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