I thought starting out with Johnny Horton singing “North to Alaska” might be appropriate.
This is a very good music video as it shows the country the gold seekers had to cross before they could even attempt to find their riches.
Pierre Berton, a Canadian author and authority on the Klondike, wrote several books on the gold rush and the Klondike. If you are interested in this area, reading one of Pierre’s books is well worth the effort.
Now for the continuation of our journey.
We couldn’t have asked for better weather or calmer seas. It added a great deal of enjoyment to the cruise not having to worry about dressing for rain or cold and not looking like drunks staggering from wall to wall in the corridors. We commented several times on the smoothness of the seas.
The scenery through the inside passage is difficult to describe. One Australian fellow told Linda and Debbie he’d never seen so many trees in his life. The trees are only part of the story. We traveled through passes which are only wide enough for a single cruise ship. With the exception of one small section of the trip, a marine pilot is required. While in Canadian waters, which comprised most of the journey, we had a Canadian pilot and then received an American pilot once we crossed into US waters.
There is one section of the trip just north of Vancouver called Seymour Narrows. The current runs up to 15 knots and most ships can only traverse it at a slack tide. It is also the former location of the notorious Ripple Rock which was only nine feet below the surface. It sunk 119 vessels before it was destroyed by the largest planned non-nuclear explosion in North American history on April 5, 1958. The blast was shown on live TV.
This was Linda’s fourth Alaska cruise, Deb’s third and my second. The last time I took the trip was for my 40th birthday when Linda surprised me with the trip. I had a great time flying onto the Mendenhall Glacier by helicopter and spending 45 minutes roaming around.
We chose not to take any guided tours this trip. Instead, we walked around Juneau, Skagway, and looked at Ketchikan from the deck. The highlight of the trip for me was Glacier Bay which was every bit as spectacular as the first trip. When a wall of ice falls from a glacier it’s called “calving”. The video below shows what this looks like. The screams of excitement on the video aren’t from Linda and Debbie. They’re more the silent appreciation type of folks.
I could run on for a long time about the scenery, the food, and the bread pudding (special food for me), but I think I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves. I hope you enjoy them.