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Alaska 2017 . Solstice Seattle return

Discussion in 'Community Message Board' started by BSeabob, Jun 30, 2017.

  1. BSeabob

    BSeabob Reinststed due to good behavior-Subject to change Staff Member

    June 16-22 Off in Good weather. The view of downtown when leaving from Pier 91 which is a fair piece out of the way.

    Up and around and into The Strait of Juan de Fuca heading for the Outside of Vancouver Island. A seven day cruise from Seattle is limited to spending a great deal of time out in the Ocean. Although this time they kept the mainland in site more than on my other outside trips it is still way better to do a seven day return from Vancouver as far as seeing stuff. One misses almost all of the Inside Passage. Plus if you want me to go with you its a lot closer to my house.
    Two night and a full day later we find ourselves in Ketchikan. I was so hot here in the afternoon sun I could not walk any more than 3 steps on the pool deck in bare feet. This makes twice now Ive got a tan in Ketchikan. Town hasn't changed much. Two other ships there and it was crowded on the streets. Creek St. is still a great walk through however.

    Parked behind us was RCL

    The deck tiers of the Solstice while in Ketchikan

    Heading down (I guess its up really) the channel on the way North from Ketchikan
    Scheduled to travel up Tracy Arm the Cruise Line/Captain switched Arms and took us into Dawes Glacier. Good decision I guess as they are not seing much of anything in Tracy Arm these days. I didn't quite catch the full details on the reason for the switch. We were not disappointed at all. So I have yet to get all the way into Tracy Arm. I do recommend a trip that takes you to Glacier Bay or Hubbard over this itinerary still though.

    In the Afternoon we made it to Juneau. The Solstice is last on the pecking order and there was a $5.00 shuttle into town. Which with three other ships in town was full. Downtown has not changed here either. All the usual places and some fun bars. The tramline is handy if its a nice day. It was later in the afternoon.[​IMG]
    Next Day is Skagway . The town has been taken over by the National Parks. The buildings on the few street are being maintained as was. Looks great but a lot of the smaller business have had trouble keeping up with the costs and staff needed for those precious summer months are having difficulty with suitable lodging. Main street are now the larger tourista outfits of the world.
    We did the train up and back to just inside Canada. No passport needed as it does not allow anyone off. This ride just fascinates me for several reasons. One is the fact they actually built it. Two: when I was posted to Northern BC back in the day we got a lot of our supplies via barges from Vancouver up the White Pass and Yukon railroad to Whitehorse, YT. and then trucked back down the Alaska Hwy and south into BC on The Stewart Cassiar Hwy. (Hwy#37) to Cassiar.
    The Train in full flight:
    Inside of the cars used for regular folks
    The seats fold over so if you are not lucky enough to get the second train of the day. Going up you want to sit on the right side as you will flips the seats and change sides. If you are lucky and on that second train of the day you will still want to sit on the right hand side at the start as you will go further into BC and actually go around a turn around and head down on the outside. They have it all figured out. Just side on the right side going up. LOL
    Heres the actual Border
    Here's the old North West Mounted Police.....shack at the top of the pass. I wonder about its size. The Mounties enforced the flow of Gold Rushers into Canada by requiring them to have a certain weight of supplies during the gold rush days.


    The small bump in the light blue left is a ship. Quite a view eh!
    The Dock in Victoria is where we found ourselves for a service call stop from 530 PM to 11 PM several days later. Victoria is a beautiful stop but not for most of us in the middle of dinner LOL

    Next day we wake up in Seattle.
    Boarding and Departure very smooth. I travelled without using my Passport. To see if I could and Using my Nexus only I had no issues other than one person that had to seek advice from a superior as we boarded. A closed loop in North America allows that.
    George C likes this.
  2. Dai Mar

    Dai Mar New Member

    Looks like you got some amazing weather. Are you able to see any whale activity from the big ships? I can help answer your question about the Tracy Arm/Dawes Glacier switch. Most boats, especially the big ones, can't make it past the amount of ice choked up in Tracy Arm to make it close to the glacier. Endicott Arm is much wider and the ice has an easier time escaping. I think both glaciers are equally impressive but for the last year and a half everyone has been going to Dawes. You think they would just switch it in the brochures. It goes to show how active the glaciers are with their calvings. I took a video from Dawes a few weeks ago showing a big calving. Enjoy
  3. Flyingfish

    Flyingfish Well-Known Member

    I was humming "North to Alaska" entire post. Great shots.
    BSeabob likes this.
  4. Jamman

    Jamman Carnival Specialist Community Sponsor

    Thanks for the review and pictures! :thumb:
    BSeabob likes this.
  5. George C

    George C Well-Known Member

    Great pictures, I think I need to book Alaska after 60 cruises almost all in warm water need to try something else
    BSeabob likes this.
  6. Krazy Kruizers

    Krazy Kruizers Holland America Specialist

    Thanks for the review and great pictures.

    We have done the train several times in Skagway -- love it.
    BSeabob likes this.
  7. gottagoacruzn

    gottagoacruzn Well-Known Member

    Yup, great pictures, was on the train in May.
    BSeabob likes this.
  8. The Cruiser

    The Cruiser Well-Known Member

    Great :photo: BSea. Thanks for the review.
    BSeabob likes this.
  9. BSeabob

    BSeabob Reinststed due to good behavior-Subject to change Staff Member

    Re Big ships and Whales. On the Itinerary from Seattle the answer is not likely..or not close enough to get a view other that a "Blow" at distance From Vancouver the answer is maybe. Better odds on seeing Orcas for sure as the ship spend more time in protected waters. Used to see them all the time when the Vancouver ships took some "REAL" Inside Passage north of Vancouver Island. I don't think any of the main line ships do that at all any more. For sure not X. :smiley23::smiley23:

    Thanks ..

    I saw your video in one of your previous posts likely your blog...explains a lot,
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2017
  10. BSeabob

    BSeabob Reinststed due to good behavior-Subject to change Staff Member

    Well I had a bit of an issue with one of the photo's but with the help of The Captain It's been added. Nothing really special but it could be worth while having a look at. ;) So now the comment ahead of no photo has been fixed. The photo is there.
    Ive been enjoying the great weather here in the Pacific North West or South West, depending on which side of the border you are on.
    BUT if you haven't heard we are having real issues with forest fires in the interior of the Province and elsewhere over near Alberta. Over 30,000 folks are out of their homes and being sheltered elsewhere. So we are looking for rain.

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