I said on my talk from the bridge last night that I’d be on deck looking for whales at 04:00 this morning, and there were people there to talk to me – I love enthusiastic passengers! The first hour (around Hoonah) was sloow, but there were several humpbacks at Point Adolphus and many at the mouth of Glacier Bay.
Sailing past Haines yesterday morning at 04:55, I was more than a little surprised to see through the heavy rain that there was fresh snow on the highest peaks.
The view up Taiya Inlet from my table at the front of Horizon Court. Oh well, a morning like this makes hot coffee taste ever better
When we docked at Skagway, I was happy that I had no major plans for the day. All I needed to do at some point was walk over to a friend’s house to drop off a wonderful Haida talking stick I bought at Arctic Spirit Gallery in Ketchikan. It would have been difficult/expensive to ship, so I’ll just pick it up from Brian next week when I drive down. I haven’t taken a photo of it yet but will show it to you when I pick it up.
Cruise West’s little Spirit of Discovery, and the Norwegian Pearl – 2 very different ways to see Southeast Alaska. Some day we’ll give Cruise West a try – for those who want “up close and personal”, they’re reported to be worth every penny of the substantial extra cost.
There must be days like this when some crew members think about taking a contract on a ship that sails in the Caribbean year round. This fellow is pushing excess water off the walking area.
Looking down Broadway at the Norwegian Star. By noon when I left the ship it had almost stopped raining – this was shot at 12:40.
It was great to see that Soapy Smith’s Parlor is finally being restored.
I got ready for my sailaway talk early and went to Steve Hites’ 7:15 show. I’ve known Steve since I started running tours in 1990, and it was wonderful to see him again. He was, of course, very surprised to find another local working on the ship! Neither of us had time for a long visit, but I thoroughly enjoyed his music-and-history show.
A final look at Skagway from the bridge as we backed away from the Railroad Dock at 8:30pm. As you can see, we were the last ship to leave, having spent over 14 hours there.
A crew member walks out to haul down the Princess flag as we sail back down Taiya Inlet.
A final look out my porthole at 10:20pm.
When I looked at the GPS map on the TV at 03:45 we were just passing Hoonah – time to get out and start watching for whales!
As usual in this area, it was impossible to say what the day was going to bring. Weather forecasts really mean nothing. A few of us stayed under a canopy while we watched for whales, but by about 4:30 the rain quit.
A giant Canada Day cake was set up outside Horizon Court when I went down for coffee at 05:30.
The further we sailed into Glacier Bay, the better the weather looked.
As we neared the glaciers, the clouds once again parted for us!
Another amazing day at John Hopkins Glacier!
By 9am drink sales seemed fairly brisk – hey, it’s noon somewhere!
The Norwegian Pearl sails out of Tarr Inlet as we enter.
The Margerie Glacier has clearly been calving a lot in recent days – there was a lot of ice both in the water and stranded on the beach by the falling tide.
There are some very impressive cliffs along Tarr Inlet in particular.
Up close and personal with Margerie.
As the captain swung the ship so that the folks on starboard side balconies could see the glacier, many folks were down at the seafood buffet and a few were in the swimming pools and hot tubs.
NPS Ranger Emma on deck after doing the first segment of her bridge presentations.
The boat coming to take the NPS rangers off got a bit distracted.
Bye-bye, Rangers Emma and Kevin – thanks!
Passing Cape Spencer and its lighthouse at 5:30, we headed out into the Gulf of Alaska, which so far is very calm.
It’s our second and final formal night – classical music and portrait photographers are part of that. Time to post this and get fancied up for my 8pm dinner reservation