Photo taken by Patrick Feller
License: Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY)
View this photo on Flickr
BH Photo #282542
I grew up in the area in the 1960s. It was the same long weekend wait times back then. As a young kid, the ferry boat ride was a big thrill, so sometimes we'd ride over just to turn around and ride back.
Be warned. This ferry is a serious tourist draw. Wait times in-season especially on the weekends especially from the island to Bolivar peninsula can be up in the range of 2+ hours (with five ferry boats running.). Off season weekends can have wait times well over an hour.
There is a program where locals can buy a fast lane pass (it goes both ways) and real medical emergencies can skip ahead from the Bolivar side to the island.
Your GPS may send you on shortcuts, but cutting is against the law on Ferry Boulevard (all the way to Seawall Boulevard.) Left turns toward the ferry are not allowed where there is a line. The police ACTIVELY and regularly patrol and enforce the line. Generally they just throw you out of line and send you back to the west end of the line, but at times there are fines and even arrests made. The westbound line is not as bad, but there is generally at least one Sherriff's deputy over there.