M/V Tustumena


In Kodiak Wednesday morning, people expected to see the Alaska Marine Highway System ferry Tustamena make its way up the Near Island Channel. Instead, the ferry was only halfway there. The reason: the ship’s departure from here in Homer had been delayed by Tuesday night’s Tsunami Warning.

Tusty rides (the waves) again

Jul 1, 2020

    The Alaska State Ferry Tustumena will set sail again Thursday morning. 

    After more than three weeks tied up to the dock in Homer due to a Covid-19 outbreak on the ship’s second voyage, the Alaska Marine Highway System reports that the Tusty has been commercially cleaned and is cleared to sail.

    It’s voyage will be a short one -- a day trip to Seldovia, departing Homer at 11:45 a.m., and returning this evening at 5:45 p.m.


    After one crewmember tested positive for COVID-19 on the state ferry Tustumena’s second voyage of the year, the ship was returned to Homer and has been tied up ever since.

    As soon as the Tusty returned, six more crewmembers were tested positive for the highly-contagious infection. When asked what further steps the Alaska Marine Highway System was going to take, Capt. John Falvey said they were going to continue to rely on their pre-sailing contingency plan.


After the Alaska State Ferry Tustumena returned to Homer Monday night a bit past 7 p.m., healthcare personnel from South Peninsula Hospital boarded in protective garb to take COVID-19 test samples from 40 crew members and the six passengers on board.
    According to the Alaska Department of Transportation, all were kept aboard the Tustumena overnight while the rapid tests were analyzed at SPH.

Just in from the Alaska Marine Highway System:

Jun 9, 2020

Sailings for the M/V Tustumena are expected to resume June 27 when the ship departs Homer for Kodiak at 10:30 a.m.

Schedules and travel information are available at www.FerryAlaska.com.

If you have questions about reservations, please visit www.FerryAlaska.com or contact the AMHS reservation call center by dialing 1-907-465-3941 or toll-free at 1-800-642-0066.

Service notices may be found at dot.alaska.gov/amhs/service_notices.shtml.



The Alaska State Ferry Tustumena steamed into Homer Monday night at 7 p.m., but there wasn’t the usual rush of cars and people disembarking. In fact, the 51 people aboard, 35 crew and 6 passengers, were asked to stay aboard as health officials screened them for exposure to coronavirus after a crew member tested positive for COVID-19 while the ship was in Dutch Harbor on Saturday.

By Gordon Leggett - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=74580465

A crew member aboard the Alaska Marine Highway System Ferry Tustumena tested positive for COVID-19 Saturday in Dutch Harbor, causing the Department of Transportation to recall the vessel to Homer and bypassing scheduled stops along the Alaska Peninsula and Kodiak. 

After hiatus, Tustumena resumes service Tuesday

Jun 1, 2020

Ferry service, besieged by gubernatorial budget cuts and equipment problems in the past year, is scheduled to resume Tuesday locally with the Alaska Marine Highway ferry Tustumena steaming from Homer shortly before noon.
    The “Trusty Tusty,” fresh from an extensive overhaul, is scheduled to sail to Seldovia at 11:45 Tuesday morning, returning to Homer at 6 p.m. A following departure for Kodiak will be at 10:30 p.m.
    At least that’s what one online schedule is saying.

Photo from KBBI

The ferry strike is leaving some around the Southern Kenai Peninsula with few options to get around. Residents and tourists in Seldovia and Homer are scrambling to find other modes of transportation for themselves and their goods.  

Chris Wheeler is the owner of one of the only grocery stores in Seldovia. He takes his truck to and from Homer on the ferry so he can get groceries in Anchorage. That’s what he did last week. But there was no way to get back to his store with his load:  

Breakdown on the Alaska Marine Highway

Jul 19, 2019
City of Unalaska

Homer residents won’t have as much access to the ferry system this winter after budget cuts have slashed service.
The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities has published the draft schedule for the Alaska Marine Highway System for the upcoming winter. The ferry is proposed to visit Homer three days per week, connecting with Kodiak and Seldovia, starting in October.