Monday, August 19, 2013

Cruise to Alaska - August 2013

Anchorage from the ship
Red Dog Saloon
After spending a wonderful day in Seattle, we're in Ketchikan catching up with the cruise ship.
Mary in Ketchikan
As the first look of Alaska on our agenda, this little town didn't disappoint. Built up and around hills (had to take a tram from our room at Cape Fox Lodge) the town was full of personality. We stopped by the local Eagles (Mary and Charlie are members) and met some of the local people...all friendly, some natives, some transplants from other parts of the US, all willing to share their Ketchikan stories.

What was most compelling to me about the town is their pride in native heritage. Loved this park that showed native totems.
Example of Native Totems...beautiful
Wished I could have spent a little more time here :)

Ketchikan from the hill
A great introduction to Alaska.

Added Note: If you have been following my blog, you'll note that after 3 days on the cruise I (procrastinator) haven't finished out our journey. Here is a quick attempt to pictorially show the highlights of the cruise as well as some of our land trips.

Juneau from Mt. Roberts Tram

See the little, tiny excavator in the bottom middle of the image. Trying to show the vast expanse of this rock.

White Pass Rail trip...the views were beautiful!

Cruise to College Fjord 
Visitor on our balcony
Marjorie (Margerie seems to be the correct spelling) Glacier

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Day 2 - Cruise to Alaska

Fish at Farmer's Market

Space Needle...built in 1962 for World's Fair
Another day and not on the boat yet! Having missed our original connection to VanCouver, we also missed the cruise, as a last resort, we flew to Seattle...will fly to Ketchikan and board the ship.

Now...knowing me, this could have been a disaster, but coming into the trip with a 'different' mindset, it was wonderful. My travel companions...Leon Sr, Charlie and Mary are all pretty 'laid back' and handled all missed connections with ease. Our travel agent, Sandy from Travel Net was on the phone with me constantly that first day figuring out new connections, travel insurance, cruise line rules and the like. I normally schedule my own trips, but I am SO glad I had Travel Net to help me through the maze of issues encountered when missing a cruise ship (something called the Jones Law was a little intimidating at first.)

Well, back to our trip. Seattle is a destination city in and of itself. We flew into Seattle Day 1, landed in a great hotel (Doubletree Hilton) near the airport, and just enjoyed the city. We took a car downtown, visited Farmers Market and the Seattle Space Needle.

Seattle Skyline

It is refreshing to be on the West Coast again...

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Day 1 - Cruise to Alaska...

Yeah, I know...this doesn't look much like a cruise image...and so the story begins. Day one started a little questionably as far as vacations go. We began driving down our little country road with a whop, whop and more whops. My travel partner, more attuned to these noises than I said STOP. Yikes...I did and we had a flat tire...3:00 am and on our way to the airport.

An hour or two later and at the airport on the tarmac...foggy! Our plane is long...that we missed our connection in Detroit...and the dominos started to fall resulting in our missing the cruise line connection. The next two hours were spent on the phone getting reconnected and the next four in the airport waiting for the next flight. Aargh...what a beginning. And we still have started the cruise.

Today...another day and we'll hopefully catch it in Ketchikan...I'll keep you posted!

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