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  Alaska Cruise  

Our first cruise experience was a trip up British Columbia's Inside Passage and the Alaskan Panhandle. We viewed spectacular fiords, mountains, glaciers, icebergs, coastal towns, and wildlife galore.

Our cruise departed from Vancouver, where we sailed past Stanley Park and the Lions Gate Bridge and proceeded amongst the islands of the Inside Passage.
 

Tracy Arm Fiord is breathtaking with its steep valley walls, glaciers, waterfalls and icebergs.

A highlight of the cruise is the day on which the ship circles slowly in UNESCO Heritage site Glacier Bay National Park while naturalists describe the ecology of the area.
 

11 glaciers are visible from the waters in Glacier Bay. The specks in the picture are kayakers who are 2000 feet from the glacier face which is 250 feet high.

Skagway, at the northern tip of the Inside Passage, is home to Klondike gold-rush era buildings now preserved as part of the Klondike Gold Rush National Historic Park.

The White Pass and Yukon vintage (1898) railroad provides sweeping views of waterfalls, gorges, glaciers, trestles, and historical sites associated with the steep Chilkoot Trail from Skagway to Carcross, Yukon.
 

Ketchikan is known for its settlement history and its many totem poles viewed throughout the town and at Misty Fiords National Park.
 

Ketchikan's Creek Street historic boardwalk over Ketchikan Creek, former area of fishermen, bootleggers and prostitutes, is now a tourist area of restaurants, curio shops and salmon viewing areas.
 

Tlinglit totem animal symbols in Skagway 

Tikhanov's 1818 Aleut in Festival Dress painting

Juneau library stained-glass window of spawning salmon
 

Artwork celebrates the rich natural and cultural heritage of Alaska.
 

Built on a native fishing ground, Totem Bight State Historical Park contains a restored Chieftain's house and the largest number of totem poles in one area.
 

Juneau is the capital of Alaska. With a population of 30,000, Juneau is unique as the only state capital not connected by roadway to the rest of the state. (Alan Wu, Wikimedia Commons)
 

               

Juneau's economy relies on government services, commercial fishing, and tourism, which takes advantage of its historical buildings, artists' culture and scenic beauty.
 

30 glaciers flow from the Juneau Icefield. At  Mendenhall Glacier are stunning views of a lake-terminating calving glacier and Nugget Falls. 

Like other indigenous groups, the Tlingit of this region are striving to maintain their traditional language and culture, while being fully involved in modern commerce. (James Poulson, The Daily Sitka Sentinel)
 

We were able to view a lot of wildlife, including sea lions, fur seals, orcas, humpback whales, sea otters and bald eagles. (photos courtesy of NOAA National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
 

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This site was last updated 03/26/22