Sunday, September 30, 2018

North to Alaska 2018 (5, 6)

Click here for my Introductory Post

Icy Strait Point

Saturday, September 1, 2018
We are scheduled to arrive in Icy Strait Point, Alaska.
This sign at the "Tours Desk" caught my attention.
It shows things to see right around where the ship is
going to be docked.

Here we are at Icy Strait Point.
Look closely in the trees to the left for a tiny white spot.

Departing the ship I could see the tiny white spot had turned
out to be a bald eagle. There was a nest in the tree and this one was
keeping watch.

As you walk away from the ship you pass this spot.
This is a burial ground for some of the original settlers
in this location.

Great little place for the freshest seafood.

There is a shuttle into the town of Hoonah, Alaska, about 1.5 miles
from the ship. There is also an excellent sidewalk for those who
wish to walk into town and pass on the $5 shuttle charge.

Kayaking is one of the activities available at this stop.

Wishing I knew the story of this vessel.
When I snapped the picture below, I thought about the day being a Saturday and Eileen would be posting Saturday's Critters. I thought to myself, when I get back I'll link up with her as I thought my eagle pic (above) would qualify. At the same time I thought some of the critter lovers might enjoy this guy as well. Thanks to Eileen for hosting!

OK, not a real bear, but a pretty neat sculpture!
This is located near the Old Cannery

Day at Sea

Sunday morning, September 2nd
I stepped out on the aft deck to watch the sunrise.

6:37 AM Alaska Daylight Time
We are at sea enroute Anchorage.

I guess there are others who like to snap sunrise pics.

Zoomed in a bit.
Looks like it is going to be a beautiful day!

This is a "Day at Sea" with no land in sight.
The seas are smooth today.

Later, in the afternoon, the skies are still perfectly clear.

There are plenty of activites inside the ship.
I would rather be right here watching the sea, doing some
reading, listening to some of my music, and
possibly spotting some interesting wildlife.

Next time: Anchorage

Saturday, September 29, 2018

North to Alaska 2018 (4)

Click here for my Introductory Post.


Yet again, I'm not your typical cruiser. On this day I'm up early to watch the ship dock in Juneau. I've already been informed of the day by the carpet in the elevator and I've taken a look at the Naturalist's board in the lobby. Next, I'm out onto the Promenade Deck to snap some pictures of the docking process.
In a few minutes time we will be docked at this location in
Juneau, Alaska. Note the forklift and a few people behind it in orange/red jackets.

The Captain has positioned us perfectly and let out the ropes to tie us up.
The guys putting the rope in place go through a very sequential process
as the rope itself is very heavy.

We're tied up and the gangway is being put in place.

The lady on the gangway is the first person to walk aboard. I
believe she is the "Port Agent" for the ship. It will be another
30 minutes or so before passengers leave the ship. Time now
for me to go up and have some breakfast.

Later in day this shot looks toward downtown Juneau.
The bigger building in the center is the Public Library. The crew
tells me they love to go there for free WI-FI. :-)

Looking in the opposite direction down the shore line. First time
visitors love to take an aerial tramway to the top of the hill on the left
for some pretty spectacular views of the harbor.

This seemed like a good time to show you my room. Kind of spartan,
isn't it? :-) Well, this is the way to go economically. Nothing fancy,
just the basics. This is called an "Oceanview" stateroom. By the way,
I don't recomment "Interior" rooms ... they are the least expensive
but sort of like living in a cave.

Mid day I walked into Juneau and it was raining. Again, don't
forget your raingear! People will give you directions around town
based on this clock.

Zaandam at dock in Juneau, August 31, 2018.
Note the statue on the far right and see another photo below. 

I've just finished dinner on the ship and stepped out on the
deck. We will be here until 10PM. Some cruisers like to have
dinner at one of the Juneau restaurants.

Curious and interesting statues along the waterfront take on
a fascinating look when lighted in the evening.

Walked around to the other side of the ship for one last photo
looking west to other parts of Juneau, the Capitol of Alaska.
Next time: Icy Strait Point

Friday, September 28, 2018

North to Alaska 2018 (3)

Click here for my Introductory Post

Tracy Arm

Once again, I'm not your typical cruiser. Here's another example: While most folks like to "sleep in" I like to be up early, step out onto the Promenade Deck for a breath of fresh air, and then head up to the Lido Market (restaurant) to get a good table, write in my journal, people watch, and see the morning activities unfold.

Each morning on the way to breakfast I passed the
Naturalist's Desk in the main lobby. Every day the Naturalist filled a
white board with something interesting, like you see
above ... Animal of the Day, Humpback whale.

Ready for a good cup of coffee in the Lido Market
The breakfast menu includes many, many options!

Spotted an Alaska Marine Highway vessel (ferry) heading South.
You can take your car with you to Alaska on a ferry like this which
departs from Bellingham, Washington.

Today we are heading into Tracy Arm

Two things about this photo:
1. Be sure to bring proper clothing. It can be cold out on deck!
2. Like the lady, you can use an cell phone for pictures,
but you really need something with good optical zoom!

Typical photographers lined up to catch the views.

Out on the bow ... it is cold and windy on this day. The weather in
Alaska is changeable! Rain is common, so is cold and windy.
On this day it has been raining off and on.

Getting close to the end of Tracy Arm.
Just a glimpse of Sawyer Glacier can be seen on the left.

The Captain says this is as close as we will get today.
He is worried about icebergs.

Zoomed in on Sawyer Glacier.
What an amazing field of ice. It is hard
to appreciate this until you see it in person!
Join me next time for: Juneau

Thursday, September 27, 2018

North to Alaska 2018 (0, 1, 2)

First 3 Days

For introduction, please see this earlier post.

Monday afternoon, August 27
Watching Seattle fade into the distance.
By the way, most cruises are sold "by the day." For example, this one is for 14 days. The cruise companies don't count the day of departure, or as they call it, "embarkation". So, in my title, you see 0, 1, 2 for the first three days.

Tuesday, August 28th
"At Sea" aka On the way, no stops today.
Every morning I snap the carpet in the elevator to
keep me and the photos organized.

Wednesday morning, August 29th
Approaching our first stop ... Ketchikan

First few passengers step off the ship in Ketchikan.
The building with green roof is the Visitor Center.

Stepping off the ship in Ketchikan.
The Zaandam is one of two Holland America ships in port today.

First stop ... Creek Street
Watch the salmon heading upstream.

Recommended: The New York Cafe.
After walking all around town, take a break and enjoy a
cup of coffee or hot chocolate.

A few blooms still holding on in late August.

Early afternoon ... about to reboard the ship.
The monument in center is known as "The Rock" 

Sunny afternoon in Ketchikan.
"Alaska's 1st City"

The Captain says we are about to depart.
I see a few passengers still in line to get back aboard.
It has been a treat to be here on a dry, sunny day!

Putting Ketchikan behind us and heading to Tracy Arm.
More North to Alaska tomorrow.


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