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  #1  
Old February 27th, 2013, 06:11 PM
luvSClake luvSClake is offline
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Default Bennett Scenic Journey

I am considering this tour for our day in Skagway. I have looked all through the posts and so far haven't seen any comments about it. Can anyone give me information about this tour, likes, dislikes, experience with Chilkoot Charters, etc, Thanks
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  #2  
Old February 27th, 2013, 06:47 PM
Glaciers Glaciers is offline
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Originally Posted by USMCmomx2 View Post
I am considering this tour for our day in Skagway. I have looked all through the posts and so far haven't seen any comments about it. Can anyone give me information about this tour, likes, dislikes, experience with Chilkoot Charters, etc, Thanks
Try using the "Search this forum" function, top right. Enter Bennett Scenic Journey. You'll get a lot of info on it.
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  #3  
Old February 27th, 2013, 07:17 PM
luvSClake luvSClake is offline
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Originally Posted by Glaciers View Post
Try using the "Search this forum" function, top right. Enter Bennett Scenic Journey. You'll get a lot of info on it.
Thanks, thought I had done that, must have entered something wrong. Did the search again and got some more recent info.
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  #4  
Old February 27th, 2013, 08:04 PM
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bonvoyagie bonvoyagie is offline
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The way the search function has been working (or not) I am glad that you posted.

Often times this tour info is burried in threads about the other tours. I did the Bennett Scenic Tour through Chilkoot last summer. The trip is wonderful. If you are on the train first days (Wed, Thur, Sat) you are on the first train up the mountain and board near the rail yards. Chilkoot picks you up from your ship and delivers you there - the same driver will meet you in Carcross.

I was in a car with at most 18 people - 5 who were part of the Chilkoot group and the rest with another tour company. We were not mixed in with the Princess tour group.

The scenery is great all the way up to the summit and then on to Fraser, At Fraser we let off most of the passengers and left three cars behind. We also left the highway and worked our way to Bennett where we had an excellent lunch of beef stew, Sourdough Bread, cole slaw, and apple pie. During lunch there was a slide show on the history of Bennett. When we were done there was a walking tour of the remains of the town.

The rest of the trip travels the length of Lake Bennett and ends up in Carcross. Our driver met us on the platform and told us where the van was and how long we had to look around - I stamped my passport and bought an ice cream cone at the drug store. Once past Bennett they come around with hats and video DVDs - the hats on this trip are slightly different than the ones they sell on other tours - they say Carcross on the back and have a 67.5 embroidered on the bill (others say Skagway and the year). The special hats are available only in the Carcross depot and on this train.

The van trip back is great too. We went up and saw the Carcross Desert and Emerald Lake and then went back through town and down the Klondike Hy back to Skagway - stopping as we wanted. Our driver also tried to avoid the big busses of the cruise lines - BTW we had 5 people in a 14 pax van. We stopped to see International Falls, and have our photos taken in front of the Welcome to Alaska sign. Yes it was a long day, but well worth it.
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Old February 27th, 2013, 11:00 PM
oaktreerb oaktreerb is offline
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Originally Posted by USMCmomx2 View Post
I am considering this tour for our day in Skagway. I have looked all through the posts and so far haven't seen any comments about it. Can anyone give me information about this tour, likes, dislikes, experience with Chilkoot Charters, etc, Thanks
I have been to Lake Bennett twice as part of a Hal cruise tour which they no longer offer. It was one of the highlights of the trip to see it as part of the history of the Chilkoot Trail which began in Dyea near Skagway and ends at Lake Bennett. You need to walk around, up the hill, and really appreciate the history that is preserved here. You can get there by foot or by train....the train ride is memorable.
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  #6  
Old February 28th, 2013, 05:05 PM
Budget Queen Budget Queen is offline
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This long train trip, which I have also done, along with several runs of the White Pass train, is for rail fans, and people with the priority for scenery and history. It is nonstop scenery and Chilkoot does a fantastic job.
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  #7  
Old February 28th, 2013, 06:46 PM
vbmom87 vbmom87 is online now
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It is a wonderful tour and CHilkoot is a great operator with much smaller tour buses than the cruise lines.
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  #8  
Old June 15th, 2013, 09:12 PM
vbmom87 vbmom87 is online now
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My daughter and her DH took this tour today and posted a photo of Bennett Lake on FB. They both really enjoyed this tour and they are only 25.

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  #9  
Old June 22nd, 2013, 03:19 PM
world_traveler_et world_traveler_et is offline
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We booked the Bennett Scenic Journey through Chilkoot Charter & tours. We enjoyed the tour. We were on our trip last week and it was warm. I would suggest wearing bug spray--the mosquitoes were large.

The scenery was beautiful especially the area around Lake Bennett. I spent a majority of my outside on the viewing deck taking pictures and videos. The waterfalls along the way were awesome because of all the melting of the snow. We were even able to see three bears near the railroad tracks and the train slowed down.

On the way back we were in vans that seated around twenty passengers. We were able to pull off the road frequently to take pictures. We were able to stop in places that the large buses couldn't because of there size.

I would highly recommend this tour Company and our guide "Stanley" was wonderful.

I would probably skip the lunch and take more time walking around the beautiful Lake Bennett area.

Our cruise ship was late coming into the port are. We were to meet the tour guide at 7:20M and were were still on board the ship. We were the first passengers off the ship. Our train was four cars long. We weren't sure they were going to be able to hold the train. We were able to board the train and we were waiting four three passengers who booked this excursion directly from the cruise. I am glad they held the train; otherwise, we would have missed a great excursion.

I would defiantly do this excursion again!
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Old June 22nd, 2013, 03:22 PM
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So glad to hear you enjoyed it. We will be doing this in just over a month!
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  #11  
Old June 22nd, 2013, 09:27 PM
vbmom87 vbmom87 is online now
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My Daughter and SIL (age 25) went on the Bennett Scenic Journey with Chilkoot on June 15 and it was the highlight of their Alaska cruise. They also took a two hour hike on a glacier in Juneau and took the Zodiac tour in Ketchikan. Their cruise ship visited Glacier Bay on a gorgeous sunny day. When all was said and done, they both agreed that the Bennett Scenic Journey was their favorite activity in AK. They were blessed with a beautiful and sunny day with no fog. Their photos around Bennett Lake are truly stunning. I had expected them to like the glacier hike the best. They did love this excursion too, but just not as much as the train/bus tour.
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Last edited by vbmom87; June 22nd, 2013 at 09:30 PM.
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  #12  
Old June 23rd, 2013, 03:11 PM
trackies trackies is offline
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Thanks everyone for all the useful comments. We've booked the Bennett Lake excursion independently from the Zuiderdam on July 2nd. My only concern about booking independently is that they get us back to the cruise ship on time for departure but it sounds like they are very dependable. Can anyone comment on that? Liz
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Old June 23rd, 2013, 06:04 PM
Budget Queen Budget Queen is offline
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Originally Posted by trackies View Post
My only concern about booking independently is that they get us back to the cruise ship on time for departure but it sounds like they are very dependable. Can anyone comment on that? Liz
If you booked with Chilkoot, your concern is unfounded. 99.999% of the trips will return you to the ship in plenty of time- as long as YOU told them your port time? (you can not have a short day leaving at 4pm). No 100% "guarantee", however. Wish the future could be predicted.
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  #14  
Old June 24th, 2013, 12:17 AM
world_traveler_et world_traveler_et is offline
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Originally Posted by vbmom87 View Post
My Daughter and SIL (age 25) went on the Bennett Scenic Journey with Chilkoot on June 15 and it was the highlight of their Alaska cruise. They also took a two hour hike on a glacier in Juneau and took the Zodiac tour in Ketchikan. Their cruise ship visited Glacier Bay on a gorgeous sunny day. When all was said and done, they both agreed that the Bennett Scenic Journey was their favorite activity in AK. They were blessed with a beautiful and sunny day with no fog. Their photos around Bennett Lake are truly stunning. I had expected them to like the glacier hike the best. They did love this excursion too, but just not as much as the train/bus tour.
VBMom,
It looks like we were on the same tour. Which rail car were you in? We were seated in the first rail car.
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  #15  
Old June 24th, 2013, 10:28 AM
vbmom87 vbmom87 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trackies View Post
Thanks everyone for all the useful comments. We've booked the Bennett Lake excursion independently from the Zuiderdam on July 2nd. My only concern about booking independently is that they get us back to the cruise ship on time for departure but it sounds like they are very dependable. Can anyone comment on that? Liz
When we went in 2008 and I expresssed this concern, I was told by Chilkoot that a Princess bus comes down after their bus and if by chance they would be broken down, passengers would be allowed on the Princess bus. Is this fact, and if it is, does it still hold true? I have no idea. It is just what I was told back in 2008. I would ask Chilkoot directly what would happen if their bus were disabled along the way down.
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  #16  
Old June 25th, 2013, 05:52 PM
vbmom87 vbmom87 is online now
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Originally Posted by world_traveler_et View Post
VBMom,
It looks like we were on the same tour. Which rail car were you in? We were seated in the first rail car.
Actually my DD and SIL that were on this tour not me. They said they don't remember which car they were in, but it was not the first car. I do know that they said they thought everyone got to sit on the left side in their car. That was nice, because on our tour, many people had to sit on the right side. It is too bad that in those cases, they don't have people swap sides half way. It seems unfair that if you aren't one of the first ones to arrive, you may be stuck the whole time on the undesirable side of the train car.
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  #17  
Old June 25th, 2013, 08:32 PM
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Last summer I was on the third car - the first two were filled with Princess Pax doing the tour through Princess - those two cars were packed - our car had maybe a dozen - we were all on the left or outside. We also carried three cars behind the car I was in - they all got off at Fraser and we also left the cars there.
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