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Posts posted by CammieO

  1. I'm back! Did not need the rain pants! The Dick's we went to only stocked the lite-weight jacket/pant combo for $20. Returned it after the cruise.


    It was sunny and or partly cloudy the whole week. Yes, I think I brought the sun with me. I did use the rain jacket for extra warmth as needed. Glacier Bay was sunny and layered up if we went out side to walk the deck, it was cold from the wind. I used my hat/gloves. Was chilly on the excursion to Tracy Arm. I wore long underwear and took every layer that I brought!


    I’m glad the weather was nice! I think I’ll be glad to have all the layers, just in case haha. Thanks for the update!

  2. My husband and I wear glasses and find that waterproof sombreros instead of ball caps are better at keeping drops off the glasses. And no need for the hood (even before I wore glasses - I hated hoods ;-)


    I got my first Outdoor Research sombrero when I was 14 and introduced them to my husband. Now I have a waterproof ex officio hat packed for my AK cruise this week. (Columbia has lots of great options too, if you have an outlet store nearby). I usually order mine from Sierra Trading Post, REI Outlet, or Amazon....[my husband has also shaved his head for ~20 years so I tend to buy LOTS of hats. He wears them almost every day - sun protection, warmth, water protection - whatever the need, we have a hat for that;p]


    Oh I’ve never even heard of those before! Thanks for the tip! They sound very helpful. I keep learning about new things here haha. Enjoy your cruise!!

  3. I’m a native Floridian myself, now a Juneauite. It’s not super cold yet that time of year, but the wet 40-50 degree temps can be more miserable than dry and 30s. You’re on the right track. Wool socks, waterproof hiking shoes (I like Merrells) that you have work around enough before you leave to know they are comfortable, and waterproof rain coat and pants should be all you need to layer over your regular stuff. The more cotton you are wearing, the more miserable you will be when wet. Bring a couple pairs of fleece gloves, so you can have one drying if necessary. Oh, and a hat with a brim! In always wear a ball cap under my rain coat hood when walking in the rain. It could be pouring rain, or just mist, or, with the amazingly unusual summer we have had, it could even be 65 and sunny. Also be prepared for some businesses to already be closed for the season or be in clearance sale mode. That is the very tail end of the season, and many of the college-aged workers will have gone back to school. Enjoy your visit!


    Thank you for the advice! I will make sure to pack an extra pair of gloves. We’re not big shoppers, but I would like to grab a few souvenirs for people back home and a magnet in each port so hopefully I will be able to find those sorts of things. Thank you again!

  4. We have been to Alaska several times but only one time late in the season and we can say that you definitely neeed items you have mentioned including dry outer wear and warmer layers. It can be rough that time of year between weather, businesses closing and less access to time outside the ship if the weather is bad and since the daylight hours will be drastically reduced.......but just go with a good attitude and take the tips given above ........


    Thanks! I’m very excited! Even if it pours the whole time I can still enjoy the ship (though of course I’d like to be enjoying nature more haha).

  5. One thing I would suggest is a wind/water resistant beanie for your head. I hate pulling up hoods on jackets or sweatshirts, as it really cuts down on peripheral vision.



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    That’s a good suggestion! I wear glasses though, so the hood plus the brim of a ball cap helps keep my lenses dry. I do hate losing my peripheral vision though.

  6. I heard about Frogg Toggs rain pants from a poster here on CC. Dick's Sporting Goods carries this brand. They are not all that expensive. The men's classic pro was $25 and the ladies java toad lite was $60. My husband said no I won't need this. Well, we are picking up a pair, and if he doesn't wear them, I can return. Seems like a small price to pay when you fork out 3k plus for a trip.


    Yeah, I heard about them as well. I hope they work well for you (or that you don’t need them at all)! I got a pair of REI rain pants on clearance and have a good rain jacket already so hopefully I’ll be covered.

  7. Whilst I agree about layers, I have to disagree about wearing long underwear under jeans. I went at the end of June and I had taken some long thin leggings and I ended up wearing them under my jeans - whilst ashore and on the ship where the a/c is always set too low for me.


    The only thing I ended up buying was a fluffy headwarmer - mostly because it stopped the wind blowing my hair in my face when on deck. It was not really a very good look but it worked.


    The OP talked about regretting not having a balcony. I did and paid about $1000 over the cost of the obstructed window rooms my daughters had. I am a big fan of balconies, but to be honest I think I wasted my money. I wanted to be on deck watching for wildlife. I know that you could watch from the balcony but then how would you know there wasn't something else more exciting going on the other side.



    Thank you for the reply! I sometimes wear leggings under my jeans here when it is actually cold so I figured I might use that method while on board if needed. I’m glad it worked for you. I won’t wear jeans to go hiking just in case it rains so I don’t end up cold and wet, but on the ship it should be okay. A fluffy head warmer sounds very nice! A balcony would be a nice treat, but you’re right, there could be other things happening on the opposite side of the ship.

  8. I’m a native Floridian and have been to Alaska three times, coming up on my forth (late August on the Ruby). It’s all about layers. Bring a few t-shirts, a couple of long sleeve shirts, a couple of sweaters, each of a different weight. Couple pairs of jeans, pair of khakis and don’t forget some lounging pants or leggings of some sort for the cabin or to wear when you going out to get coffee or your favorite adult beverage to have back in the cabin. Dressy slacks for night with a couple of blouses or dresses if that is to your liking. Slip on shoes for just running around the ship, dressy flats or heels if that’s your thing for evening. No one remembers what you’ve worn so you can re-wear the dressy outfits. If you plan to do a lot of walking or hiking, two pairs of sneakers in case on pair gets really muddy. Bring a fleece and rain jacket with a hood to layer with. You don’t need expensive hiking boots for Alaska unless you just want them or unless you are planning to hike miles in the double digits every day. You can do laundry on the ship. I have found from past experience (and have the photos to prove it) that I tend to wear the same stuff over and over. Gloves, beanie and scarf will be handy on glacier day. An extra hat for other days, baseball cap or otherwise came in handy on my “bad” hair days. You are going to love Alaska!



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    Thank you for the detailed advice! Enjoy your upcoming cruise! I have a feeling we’ll be going to Alaska more than once ourselves (though I always say that about the places we love, but then the siren call of unexplored destinations gets to me haha). We have a hike planned for each port day, so the new boots will see some action though not super long distances. And it gives us a reason to plan more mountain trips. Thank you again! I can’t wait!

  9. Funny thing CammieO. I was going to suggest REI. Didn't know they had one there. Great. The sock I bought from them was the Farm to Feet Hamilton. A lightweight crew with 53% wool. They are expensive, but guaranteed for life. lol I wore them hiking here to try out my Moab's. Have fun.


    We have a whopping grand total of two in the whole state :') and one of those only opened about a year ago I’d say. But I’m glad to have the option of going to them now. I’ll definitely take a look at those socks! Thanks!

  10. LOL went to Alaska a few years ago, From Miami, so brought a little of everything (layering(. Only thing I didn't pack was shorts, t top and bathing suit. And of course it was the middle of a heat wave, 87-90 degrees wherever we went. lol. Found some cold weather at Tracy Arm and when we did a Helicopter tour up the glacier to go dog sledding in the snow.


    Haha isn’t that just how it always goes? You think you’ve got it covered and then nature throws you a curveball. That sounds like an awesome excursion!!

  11. I went to one of the Eddie Bauer Outlets and bought a waterproof rain coat and two pairs of water resistant hiking pants. We went to quite a few glaciers and they were perfect. I wore cuddle duds underneath on my legs and Smart Wool socks. I have Merrell low hiking shoes that we sprayed with waterproofing. I did bring sneakers also just in case they got wet but even though it rained almost every day on our cruise, my feet stayed dry. I layered the top with a short sleeve shirt and a long sleeve top. I carried my souvenir hoodie (bought from our first port) in my backpack along with gloves, a scarf and ear muffs. I didn't wear the scarf or ear muffs at all but they were easy to carry and I was glad to have options if I needed more. When it was cold or rainy, I wore a baseball cap with my raincoat hood pulled up over it. My hands (in gloves) were cold when we did Tracy Arm but only because it was cold, damp and rainy and I refused to go indoors during a good portion of the tour. The top deck of our boat had a small covering and I loved being up there!


    It sounds like you are definitely on the right track. Have a great time!


    Thanks for the advice! That all sounds a lot like what I’ve been thinking of bringing, so I’m glad to hear that it worked out well for you! Thank you!

  12. I had touchscreen compatible gloves (Glider gloves) and they worked great at first. But they stopped working after about a year. I live near Sacramento, California and used them when traveling someplace colder so it's not like they had much wear.


    Looking online, it's a common issue with the conductive gloves. The conductive material in the glove breaks down with use.


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    I definitely didn’t know that. I’ll save my money and not worry about getting those sorts of gloves. Thanks for the tip!

  13. Re: gloves

    Does your camera have a touchscreen? Do you use your phone a lot (camera, texting, maps)? It's good to be able to use touchscreens with out removing your gloves.


    I got fingerless gloves with a mitten top. The mitten top covers the fingers most of the time & flips off so you can use your fingertips on a tuoch screen or when you want more dexterity. Amazon has them. Try a search like: wool fingerless gloves mitten to find them.


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    Oh! That’s an idea! I kept thinking we’d need e-tip gloves that let you use your phone with out taking the gloves off, but fingerless gloves with a mitten top didn’t even occur to me. That’s really smart!

  14. REI.com has wool and wool blend socks. They have them all year because even in summer it can be cold at times high in the Sierras or Rockies. I like the Smartwool ones. You don't need very heavy ones. The light weight wool socks provided enough warmth for hiking in Alaska summer.


    I got the Merrell Moab WP (the WP indicates the waterproof version of the shoe, some other brands use GTX for Gortex) for Alaska and was very happy with them. It comes in low top or high (shoe or more of a boot). I got the low top as it's more versatile and comfortable. It is one of the few that comes in wide.




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    Thank you for the advice! Funnily enough I was actually at REI yesterday and bought exactly that boot without remembering it had already been reccomend. I got the high top for a little more ankle support though as I have weak ankles. I’m going to shop around for socks, but I definitely do want wool socks. I’m hoping I can find them for less than $20 a pair (smart wool and another brand that the salesperson recommended) like they were at our store.

  15. its a "long" sunset here. You will be fine as long as the trail is open. The rangers have been closing it a lot due to bear and wolf activity (yes, wolves). We've had about 7 or 8 dogs killed this year from the animals so far, so the FS/PS is being a bit more conservative than usual about trail closures.


    That’s very good to know! Thank you! Hopefully we’ll be there on a good day and the trail will be open. I hope no more dogs are killed! That’s very sad.

  16. One bit of advice I give for traveling really anywhere but especially places you’re not very familiar with is to research and pack what you need and then have enough cash available you can buy yourself out of an emergency. My wife’s favorite hoodie was one she bought in glacier national park because we had a sudden cold snap with high winds one of the days we were there and so she bought something warmer than what we originally had. Now she has a warm hoodie that’s a great souvenir anyway. Buy stuff now that you know you’ll need, like decent shoes and a good waterproof outer layer. If you need more, there will be plenty of places to buy that stuff and most of it is going to be the sort of touristy thing you’ll want anyway like a good sweatshirt. As far as the Walmart gloves and hats, chances are they’ll be fine. Walmart sells that stuff all over the country including in places where it gets no joke cold and it’s the same stuff in all their stores.



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    That’t really great advice. Thank you! I try to keep my souvenier purchases to a minimum (a magnet from each place I travel), so I hadn’t thought of buying a sweatshirt etc if I really needed it. Now that it’s in my mind I’ll set some money aside just in case. And I hadn’t thought about the fact that Walmart sells the same sorts of things nationwide. That’s helpful! Thanks again!

  17. Don't worry about inexpensive hats and gloves from Walmart. They are what I use all through our up-North Michigan winters. I just wear a thin raincoat's hood over the cap, and I stay warm and dry. For gloves, I just switch them out if they get wet--even expensive waterproof gloves get wet from hands sweating.


    That’s a good point that I hadn’t thought of, that they sell the same things up north as they do down here. Thank you for the advice!

  18. You asked about a hiker. Merrell makes their Moab hiker shoe that also comes in a waterproof edition. If you can't find it locally, check Zappos.com. They do free shipping. For socks, if you want a warmer sock, I suggest something that has wool in it. Check Dick's Sporting Goods. The closer to September they may stock their winter stuff. I was lucky to get my warm stuff on the mainland last year. Already had a waterproof jacket. I really like the North Face one. Have fun.


    Thank you for your advice! I will definitely look at those shoes. My feet are always cold here in our “winter” haha so I will certainly want some nice warmer socks. Thank you for the recommendation!

  19. Yes


    We went on a Whale Watching/Mendenhall Glacier excursion last September - we arrived at 1pm. Did the whale watching first and had plenty of daylight left to hike to Nugget Falls and than back to the visitor's center before returning to the docks around 7 and have dinner at Tracy's and a little shopping at Taku


    Oh awesome! That’s very good to hear! Thank you!

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