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I booked the Radiance of the seas mid-late May
Now I hear that I won't see much wildlife in May.
What can I expect? Where should I tour to see more Animals?
( doing 4 day land tour too)
We were there in May and saw lots of wildlife. I've read that the bears are down low because there's still snow up high. We saw black and brown bears, mountain goats, whales (including bubblenetting), orcas, porpoises, sea lions, a marmot, a moose, a gazillion otters, and many different birds. Of course, we were on a small boat and got up close and personal, but I'm sure some of it will apply to your tours. Also, the scenery is so compelling, with the snow. At least, we thought so! Plus, you have less chance of rain than later in the summer.
We did the cruise land tour in late may and saw alot of wildlife. We rented a car in skagway and along the way we say a couple bears on the side of the road, one with two cubs. In denali we saw moose, bear, wolves, foxes, dall sheep, and a bobcat? not sure if that was the kind of cat it was but it was big and crossed the road right on front of our bus. We saw lots and found that to be our best time yet!!!!!
RCC Eastern Caribbean cruise Feb 2000
Carnival Southern Caribbean March 2002
RCC Alaskan Cruise Spet 2006
Carnival Western Caribbean cruise Feb 2007
Princess Diamond Alaskan Cruise/Land May 2008
Carnival Western Caribbean Cruise March 2010
Princess Golden Alaskan Cruise Aug 2012
Holland Westerdam Alaskan Cruise Aug 2013
Carnival Legend Western Cruise March 2014
WE went last week in May, great weather, 80 degrees, but we did not see many bears , or moose, on two whale watching boats saw many fish and birds whales, etc. mountains were beautiful with lots of snow, did a 5 day land tour to McKinley National Park,,still not many animals but only did the 17 miles drive tour you can do yourself. The mountain was out. really something to see. white mountain and blue skies
We sailed in May of 2009. There was a late record snow fall before we brought the Radiance up from San Francisco.
We were able to see a few bears from a plane. Saw lots of eagles, some big horn sheep, report of bear sightings in several areas, whales, sea lions on other tours. No salmon were running as it was way to early.
I think it also depends on where you are traveling. We saw the big horn sheep on our way to Emerald Lake, think there was also a sighting of a moose, but we missed that.
We leave in three days, hoping we see more salmon, thus more bear and hopefully more wildlife. Reports from a poster that the salmon were running a few weeks ago. Mother nature does her own thing. We were able to get really close to Hubbard Glacier in May. Recent reports are reporting that they haven't been able to get very close because of the fog that is supposed to be because of the warm weather.
Seldom do two years repeat themselves, this year was a great year weather which would result in an abundance of wildlife but that means nothing in the total scheme of things. There is a reason that pricing is lower in May, it is a shoulder season. If you have an opportunity to move into mid to late June or into July I think you would enjoy it more.
We did Alaska in 2003 and had amazing weather and saw lots of eagles, whales, sea lions. This was just a cruise, no land portion.
This May, 2013 we did the land portion and it snowed in Anchorage up to Denali. But, it did clear up and we did see assorted caribou & moose. No bears until Skagway. Not as many bald eagles as we saw in Sitka last time.
Saw Mt McKinley absolutely in the clear on our bus from Denali to Whittier. It was fogged in when we were in Denali with a perfectly clear blue sky.
If I did this again, I would go around the Summer Solstice: June 21 for the 23 hour daylight. It was pretty light even at 11 PM and 4:30 AM.
Zenith '93-Western Caribbean, Horizon '94-Southern Caribbean, Century '98-Western Caribbean, Grandeur of the Seas '00-Southern Caribbean, Summit '02-Hawaii to Vancouver, Mercury '03-Alaska, Summit '06-LA to Hawaii RT, Coral Princess '07-Panama Canal, Grand Princess '08-Western Caribbean, Grand Princess '12-Eastern Caribbean, Island Princess '13-Alaska, Celebrity Silhouette '14-Western Caribbean.
Last edited by shofer; July 23rd, 2013 at 09:47 PM.
Not sure about the other wildlife, but May will definitely be too early to see any salmon spawning. Ketchikan and Juneau are the only places that I know of to see them.
Been to Alaska now 3 times and have yet to see a bear there! Saw more live bears in Waco, TX where my daughter just graduated from Baylor University. They have two live bears in a habitat there on campus.
Princess Sapphire - June 2013 (Alaska)
Carnival Conquest - July 2012 (E Carribean)
Carnival Conquest - March 2012 (W Carribean)
Carnival Inspiration - July 2011 (W Carribean)
Holland America Amsterdam - July 2010 (Alaska)
Carnival Conquest - June 2009 (W Carribean)
Carnival Conquest - October 2006 (W Carribean)
Carnival Elation - July 2005 (W Carribean)
Princess Sapphire - June 2005 (Alaska)
Big Red Boat - March 1994 (Bahamas)