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Island Packers Cruises in Ventura County return to 75 percent capacity

Island Packers increases number of people it can take to Channel Islands National Park
Island Packers
Tracy Lehr

VENTURA, Calif. - Island Packers is known for taking day trip visitors and campers to the Channel Islands National Park.

During the worst of the pandemic, the cruises had to operate at reduced capacity.

Island Packers Cruises out of the Ventura and Channel Islands Harbors are now at 75 percent capacity with masks required inside the cabin areas.

On a recent trip from Ventura to Santa Cruz Island, passengers saw pods of common dolphins.

Island Packers office manager Cherryl Connally said, "It's been a challenge, but it has been amazing. We have been open the entire time taking people out."

She said they have a waiting list to help them try to accommodate everyone.

It was Candice Armstrong's first trip to the park.

"I was a little scared about kayaking, I'm not gonna lie, but then we took the Potato Harbor hike, so we could look down on the area we kayaked. so I kind of liked that," said Armstrong.

Passengers can pay a fee to bring their own kayaks to paddle into caves or they rent them on the island and go with a guide.

Visitors can also go snorkeling where they are likely to see colorful fish including Garibaldi.

The bright orange fish is the state fish of California.

Hiking is also a great way to see the Channel Islands National Park.

It's a good idea to book trips a few weeks in advance.

For more information visit

California / Environment / Lifestyle / Money and Business / Ventura County / Video
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Tracy Lehr

Tracy Lehr is a reporter and the weekend anchor of NewsChannel 3-12. To learn more about Tracy, click here


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