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  #21  
Old June 23rd, 2012, 03:00 PM
BeachBum1007 BeachBum1007 is offline
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We booked Harv & Marv’s Whale Watching Tour for the evening (it stays super light outside until late!). I believe we paid around $150 each for this for 4 hours. This was one of the best things of my life and money cannot compare to the experience you get from doing this!!!

We were picked up at the ship and were taken to the pier. Our guide was great (don’t remember his name ☹), very knowledgeable and funny. This time of the year is perfect for the whales. They are “bubble-netting” (wiki is great for info) and allowed me to get these shots. You’re not as close as you think, but is still amazing. We saw many large boats (ship-booked trips) that had people fighting to get the great view. Ours was a small boat (big enough for about 8 people) that allowed me to sit at the tip of boat with my legs dangling in the water as we were anchored to watch (I needed those awesome shots and I had to get as close as I could!!).

Driving through Juneau



Bubble-netting humpbacks. Got him with his mouth open!




Along with the humpbacks bubble-netting, we saw a baby who was still nursing (not concerned with the fish like his parents) who was showing off for a good 15 minutes.



We also saw porpoises that rode the waves of our boat and sea lions on the buoys.



On the way back our guide showed us where local bald eagles nest and even saw these guys at the pier.


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  #22  
Old June 23rd, 2012, 03:16 PM
BeachBum1007 BeachBum1007 is offline
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On the way back to our ship the guide drove us to the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center where we were able to take a couple of quick photos before we had to be back!

The harbor


Mendenhall


Love these


FINALLY getting dark outside


Weather report: I was perfectly fine with my outfit from earlier in the day and took off the coat for the most part of the boat ride. The town was relatively warm; I could have been in short sleeves.
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  #23  
Old June 23rd, 2012, 09:21 PM
luvtwotrvl luvtwotrvl is online now
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Thank you for the review and pictures. I love your pictures. So, what new camera did you purchase?

David
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  #24  
Old June 24th, 2012, 01:05 PM
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loving your review
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  #25  
Old June 24th, 2012, 02:31 PM
Aim2CruiseGirl Aim2CruiseGirl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvtwotrvl View Post
Thank you for the review and pictures. I love your pictures. So, what new camera did you purchase?

David
I was just going to ask the same question! Love the review and photos! Just returned from Alaska last week and am enjoying reliving the cruise through your review. Can't wait to read the rest!
Thanks for doing this.
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  #26  
Old June 24th, 2012, 04:22 PM
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ellbelle ellbelle is offline
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Default Alaskan Beer

Had to laugh at this picture!...So that's where all the Alaskan Beer is? The Sea Princess ran out on our June 2 sailing, how can you run out of Alaskan Beer on an Alaska cruise four days into a 10 day cruise? Can't remember HAL ever running out.

Need to book another HAL Alaska cruise!!!!!!

Hi vbmom! We have the Alaska bug really bad, just finished our fifth trip and looking at the Statendam for next year. Gave DD choice of Disneyland/Las Vegas or Alaska cruise next summer, she's says, "can we do a b2b?" What have we created? It's ALL good!
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  #27  
Old June 24th, 2012, 05:13 PM
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dmpenry dmpenry is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luvtwotrvl View Post
Thank you for the review and pictures. I love your pictures. So, what new camera did you purchase?

David

I would love to know the camera you purchased as well. It took wonderful pictures.

I created an account on here just so I could tell you thank you for your posts. I can't wait to read the rest!

Denise
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  #28  
Old June 24th, 2012, 05:39 PM
BeachBum1007 BeachBum1007 is offline
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Hi everybody! SO glad you're enjoying the review, it's nice to write something for fun for a change instead of college papers!!

To answer your questions, I purchased a Canon Rebel T3 DSLR.
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  #29  
Old June 24th, 2012, 05:58 PM
BeachBum1007 BeachBum1007 is offline
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Default Day Five: Skagway

Instead of choosing to take the train like most cruisers, we decided to rent a car so that we could see more and stop at our leisure.

After we got off the ship we took a short walk into the town and visited a few shops. It’s amazing what you can see right off the ship ☺

This was right next to the ship! Baby otter calling for his mommy! Adorable.




We found a printable guide online (Murray's) that we took with us to help us determine where all the good spots were. Unfortunately, it was not completely accurate about the mile markers so after a few frustrating turnarounds, we were able to find all of the great stopping points. Many of them are off the road places, but the road that you stay on throughout the drive has many drive-off spots where you can stop and view. The guide was better than nothing. We found a lot of great places we wouldn't have otherwise seen.

Hello fellow cruisers!


Tourists adding to nature.


Officially in British Columbia


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  #30  
Old June 24th, 2012, 06:06 PM
BeachBum1007 BeachBum1007 is offline
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Default Day Five: Skagway

Lake beach


Yukon!


Made a wish to return




In Carcross



We ended at Emerald Lake in (Canada) and then turned around to make the drive back.



I highly recommend bringing Ziplocs on your cruise so that you can pack a lunch from the ship (cereal boxes, breads with peanut butter, pastries, etc.) because there aren’t any places along this route to stop!! We did stop at a gas station at the end to grab snacks but got completely ripped off because we didn’t have Canadian dollars and didn’t know how to convert. Also, bathrooms are scarce and are usually porta-potties. Bring hand sanitizer, tissues and those little seat covers! Also, you have to cross the Canadian border so bring your passports (you can get them stamped in Carcross ☺)
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  #31  
Old June 24th, 2012, 06:14 PM
BeachBum1007 BeachBum1007 is offline
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Default Day Five: Skagway, the return

I wanted to get closer to the snow peaks, so we partially hiked up this mountain and found this little oasis of a pond and lichen covered ground. I was hoping to see a mountain goat up here; if I were a mountain goat, this is where I would be!


Back in AK


The town


After we returned the car, we saw the small town and did some quick shopping while the guys went to the Red Onion Saloon (over rated, IMO).

This was great scenery and we were glad we rented a car so that we could see it all, but it was a long day driving and definitely wore us out. You have to weigh your options of having a relaxing day on the train, or getting to see all the small things that you would otherwise not see but spend all day in the car.

Weather report: Skagway was warmer than the other ports, but Yukon was hot! I had to roll up my sleeves on my sweater and wish I had sandals instead.
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  #32  
Old June 24th, 2012, 06:23 PM
BeachBum1007 BeachBum1007 is offline
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Correction:

THIS is lake beach, not the otters
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  #33  
Old June 24th, 2012, 08:19 PM
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Beautiful photos!! We are just about to head off on our 4th Alaska trip here in a couple days. We too are in our 20's and have really enjoyed our HAL cruises also. Camera bags are packed!
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  #34  
Old June 24th, 2012, 09:45 PM
ttnc4me ttnc4me is offline
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Your review is fantastic! Thanks so much for taking the time to share.
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  #35  
Old June 24th, 2012, 10:11 PM
Glaciers Glaciers is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeachBum1007 View Post
We ended at Emerald Lake in (Canada) and then turned around to make the drive back.
Wonderful photos! We will be driving this route for the first time next week. Hope our weather is as good as yours was.
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  #36  
Old June 24th, 2012, 11:34 PM
pdmlynek pdmlynek is offline
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Beautiful photos. I also appreciate your concise, directly on point commentary.
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  #37  
Old June 24th, 2012, 11:43 PM
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Love your pics. Especially like the whales and the otters.
Making me so excited for my second trip to Alaska next year.
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  #38  
Old June 25th, 2012, 12:25 AM
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Alaskan beer? first of heard of it was it nice.Any one know if all ships have it
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  #39  
Old June 25th, 2012, 04:04 AM
Keith1010 Keith1010 is offline
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Great photos and great narrative and it's so nice that you all went as a family.

You will have wonderful memories not only of what you saw but spending the time with your family both which I think is quite important.

Excellent.

Keith
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  #40  
Old June 25th, 2012, 06:12 AM
pmjnh pmjnh is offline
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Thank you for such a detailed review..we are also whale watching with Harv and Marv on our upcoming cruise (2 weeks from today!). Glad to hear that this was a great experience. I love small boats.
We have also reserved a car in Skagway to drive to Emerald lake. Thanks for the food and potty tips! We are the type to want to stop and take in the details of the scenery so I am sure this is the best way for us to experience it, over the railroad.
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