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BeachClubDee

Carnival Legend Alaska Glacier Bay, Aug 15-22, '17 A Trip To Be or Not To Be Eclipsed

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I appreciate everyone’s comments! HopefullyI have replied to everyone who posted here. If not, feel free to let me know I missed you.

 

 

In French entrée is the course that is before themain course.

 

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Thanks for that. It was still prettyconfusing to us and it took most of the cruise before we got used to callingour appetizers as “entrees”

 

Subscribing

 

Welcome!

 

Following. Really curious about the eclipse part. png;base64,iVBORw0KGgoAAAANSUhEUgAAAAEAAAABAQMAAAAl21bKAAAAA1BMVEUAAACnej3aAAAAAXRSTlMAQObYZgAAAApJREFUCNdjYAAAAAIAAeIhvDMAAAAASUVORK5CYII=

 

I’ll give a little hint- I do have pictures.

 

 

Great review, Thank you!

 

Aww! Thanks!

 

 

Enjoy your cruise!

 

Thank you! It was really relaxing.

 

 

 

Following. Going to Alaska in August of2018.

 

Thanks for reading along. I hope youfind some useful info here.

 

 

Hi! Following along too.Cruising June 2018 w/our 17 yr old son. I'm thinking of booking Juneau WhaleWatch, so I'm interested in what you thought of the 2nd part of the tour.

 

Coming right up!

 

Enjoying your review and the very nice photos, especiallythe glacier.

 

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Thank you so much!

 

Very nice review!

 

Thanks for the kind words!

 

This is a wonderful review.

 

Keith

 

Thank you!

 

Loving the review so far. Thanks for sharing. Is itjust me or are the pictures missing?

 

Thanks! I think the picture problemis a Photobucket issue. Pictures havebeen periodically disappearing and reappearing from the reports I have and inother forums I post to.

 

 

Thanks for the report.

 

You’re welcome!

 

 

Loving your review! I hope you can come backand finish it.

 

It may not be quick, but I plan on finishing.

 

 

Excellent review, thanks!

 

Thank you!

Thanks for taking the time.

 

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You are welcome!

 

 

Brings back great memories of our cruise toAlaska.

 

Thanks! That’s one of the things Ilike about writing trip reports. Bringsback memories for me, too.

 

 

I had a B2B booked on the Spirit about 10 yearsago. Had to cancel it and I have been itching to book another, but it's not inthe budget. png;base64,iVBORw0KGgoAAAANSUhEUgAAAAEAAAABAQMAAAAl21bKAAAAA1BMVEUAAACnej3aAAAAAXRSTlMAQObYZgAAAApJREFUCNdjYAAAAAIAAeIhvDMAAAAASUVORK5CYII=SoI LOVE reading reviews like yours and seeing your pictures. You are writing areview of one cruise while on your way to another. I am SUPER JEALOUS! Thanksfor taking us along on this trip

 

The Disney cruise was a sort of last minute trip booked bymy cast member friend. My family cruiseended on August 22 and we were originally scheduled to cruise on the Fantasy onSeptember 9. But my original cruise wascancelled because we were scheduled to depart the weekend Hurricane Irma hitFlorida. We rebooked for Sept 30-Oct6.

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The Whales Don't Care- They're Already Wet!

 

 

It was raining pretty hard on our ride over to the marina and it was still raining as we got off the bus and walked to the dock. I saw a couple of bald eagles on posts. I snapped a picture with my waterproof camera, but I was moving so it came out blurry.

 

Unfortunately, I didn’t see the eagles when our boat returned to the marina after the whale watch.

 

After boarding the boat, we were directed to the seating area inside the boat where Captain Eddie and crew members Emma and Emily briefed us and talked about whales we would be seeing.

 

Emily (or Emma) (or Jennifer or Heather, not sure which) said that she follows the whale migration pattern: She spends summers working on a whale boat in Alaska and winter months working on a whale boat in Hawaii. NICE!!!

 

It was still raining as we motored out to the viewing spot, but the crew told us “Whales don't care. They are already wet.”

 

Once we stopped, the crew gave us the ok to go up onto the top deck, which was covered, to look for whales. It was kind of cramped up there, probably because most people wanted to stay under the roof so they wouldn’t get wet. I am short and had some trouble finding a good spot where I didn’t get boxed in. I am guessing that on a drier day, it would be easier for people to spread out and move around because there would be more people at the rails.

 

We kept watch and soon saw a spout

 

 

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Thar She Blows!

 

 

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At one point a baby whale breached (propelled itself out of the water), but I missed the photo op. Too bad, since it would have been a great shot with the land showing behind.

 

 

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Edited by BeachClubDee

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Continued:

 

 

The coolest thing we saw was one whale performing flipper slaps, slamming giant fins in the water to stir up or stun the fish it was feeding upon.

 

 

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Touchdown!

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Great review so far!

 

We almost booked Carnival but went with the HAL Eurodam a month ago - love reading about your experience and comparing! We did the same excursion with JWW - sorry to see you weren’t able to make it to Nugget Falls!

 

Looking forward to the rest!

 

 

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Great review so far!

 

We almost booked Carnival but went with the HAL Eurodam a month ago - love reading about your experience and comparing! We did the same excursion with JWW - sorry to see you weren’t able to make it to Nugget Falls!

 

Looking forward to the rest!

 

 

Thanks so much for reading!

 

What excursions did you do in the other ports?

 

 

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Beautiful pictures!

 

Thank you for the kind words!

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Sorry for the disappearing act! I have had an unusual amount of fall travel. I was on the Disney Fantasy (Western) in early October with a friend and I just got back from a girls trip to Disney World. Been trying to catchup on life in-between.

 

I have an update queued up and ready to go from our excursion in Skagway. Coming right up!

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Friday August 18, 2017 Skagway

“What Would You Do-ooo-ooo for a Klondike Tour?”

 

 

We were in port at Skagway from 7 am to 9 pm.

 

 

Morning

 

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Afternoon

 

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While planning our activities, I had a lot of trouble choosing what to do while in Skagway.

 

The White Pass train is probably the most popular outing here, but we weren’t really interested in that.

 

The boys were somewhat interested in gold mining activities and I looked into visiting Klondike Gold Fields (now called Alaska 360)- They have a dredge you can tour, panning, husky puppies and 45 below, an experience where you go into a chamber to experience what it is like to be in extreme cold. But I couldn’t get much info about the company and it looked like they have an exclusive agreement with the cruise ships, so you could only book an excursion through the ship, not directly.

 

I thought our best bet in Skagway was to do a scenic tour. There are a few companies that do private tours and generally get excellent reviews, but they all seemed to be all day, 8-10 hours long. That was a bit much, especially if we decided to try to check out gold mining.

 

 

After reviewing the excursions offered by Carnival, I wound up booking Yukon Scenic Tour, 5 ½ hours, $135 per person:

 

 

Take a "Sunday drive" up the spectacular Klondike Highway into Canada's Yukon Territory.

 

 

On this excursion you will:

 

 

  • Travel along the original White Pass Trail viewing waterfalls, glaciers and peaks, before crossing the Klondike Summit at 3,290 feet above sea level and pause at the ghost town of Log Cabin in British Columbia, where mail was dispatched by dogsled to the nearby mining districts.
  • Then travel along the jewel-like string of headwater lakes that feed the great Yukon River.
  • Make a stop to explore the village of Caribou Crossing, now known as Carcross, with its picturesque hotel and general store.
  • Enjoy a home-style lunch at Spirit Lake Lodge, famous through the Yukon for its homemade pies.
  • Upon your return you will be allowed plenty of time to shop and explore Skagway.

We met tour guides Pete and Mark, and we were directed to the van driven by Pete.

 

 

Pete noticed my son’s binoculars, which are huge, but were an online bargain- usually selling for more than $100, Nate purchased them for $20. Pete said he had binocular envy and talked to Nate about his college major, Wildlife Biology and Conservation. Nate appreciated the attention throughout the tour.

 

 

As we were waiting to leave, our guide advised us that there is a nice, clean, modern bathroom here at the port. Our next comfort stop, in about an hour, would be “rustic”. Then we would hit clean bathrooms again at lunch.

 

 

I am a museum educator in my part-time job at a 300-year-old farm property. Part of the programs I teach involve discussions of outhouses and chamberpots. I don’t like to take home work with me and I definitely have no desire to have this part of my work day make an appearance on my vacation!

 

 

I didn’t really need to use the facilities, but when your tour guide advises you to go, GO!

 

 

I was shocked that nobody else got off the van with me.

 

 

This may not bode well!

 

**********************************************************************

 

Pete provided a lot of information and interesting stories about the area and gold mining history as we traveled along the Klondike highway.

 

 

Our first stop was here, at this pretty spot.

 

 

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We passed by a few sites like Bove Island and a waterfall and other pretty vistas, but Pete told us that as a photographer, he was very in tune with lighting conditions. It was currently overcast and he thought that these places would be in the afternoon sun on our way back, making for better photos, so we would stop later.

 

 

We did make a stop here, which, as promised, had very rustic facilities. He advised the men on the trip that they may want to take a walk along a path into the woods if nature was calling. The women on the van with us lined up at the outhouse. Since I had already taken care of business back at the port, I enjoyed the scenery. The reports of the conditions from the women using the outhouse were not good! I was so glad I had listened to Pete’s advice.

 

 

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Fireweed

 

Continued...

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A little way further we pulled over to see some abandoned structures and to look for mountain goats up along the peaks.

 

 

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When we reached the Canadian border, we were instructed to hold up our passports while a border officer came onto the van for inspection. We were told not to say anything unless spoken to.

 

When we were underway again, Pete pointed out the Welcome to the Yukon sign. He said we would stop there later.

 

As we were approaching Caribou Crossing (Carcross) around 10:30, Pete suggested that we pass by, head directly to lunch to beat the crowds, and then double back to Carcross.

 

 

There seemed to be a lot of “we’ll stop there on the way back” pledges being given.

 

 

Lunch was at the Spirit Lake Lodge. All of the food was prepared from scratch by the owner of the Lodge, a graduate of the Culinary Institute of America. There were delicious sandwiches, broccoli salad, fruit and amazing desserts. YUM!!!

 

 

As promised, there were clean bathroom with flush toilets. Woo-hoo!!!

 

 

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As we were clearing out, the next van arrived for their lunch.

 

 

Continued...

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Our next stop was the picturesque Emerald Lake. Pete explained that the light green colors in the water were the result of the yellowish, whitish sediments from glacial erosion mixing with the blue water.

 

 

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We also stopped at the Carcross Desert.

 

 

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Then, as promised, we visited Carcross Lake and the town of Caribou Crossing (Carcross)

 

 

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Continued...

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Town of Caribou Crossing (Carcross)

 

 

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We stopped in at the Visitors Center to have our passports stamped.

 

 

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Continued...

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As we were underway again, I commented to Mark that Pete had promised that we would be making several stops before returning to port.

 

 

 

 

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Continued...

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I never should have doubted Pete!

 

 

We loved this tour! I was worried that the boys would be bored, but there was enough outdoor nature time for Nate and history and delicious food for Ben, beautiful scenery and interesting stories for Mark and photo-ops for me. The duration was perfect. We were ready to do some exploring on our own when we were dropped off.

 

 

We arrived back in town with plenty of time to look around and even to sample some iconic Alaskan seafood. I’ll share those pictures in the next update.

 

 

Next Up: Town of Skagway

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Could you give a little information about the dress code on the ship? I've only done Caribbean cruises and wondering if Alaska is a little more casual. Loving the review...thanks for all the pictures!

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Could you give a little information about the dress code on the ship? I've only done Caribbean cruises and wondering if Alaska is a little more casual. Loving the review...thanks for all the pictures!

 

The dress code is much more casual in Alaska. We saw everything from tuxedos by some on formal night to jeans and khakis. Not too many people in shorts, but that of course is due to the weather!

 

I didn't bring any dresses- I wore khakis most nights. I think my guys wore ties to our dinner at the steak house and the first formal night, but they would not have been out of place without them.

 

We did the Your Time Dining and were at our own table. I suspect that people may have dressed fancier in the traditional timed dining rotation, which was in another dining room, but I'm not sure.

 

Nobody will blink as long as you are in clean, non-ripped attire.

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Town of Skagway

 

 

 

 

When our tour of the Yukon Territory was over, we were given the option of getting off the van in town or go back to the port to board the ship. It was around 3 pm and the ship was not sailing until 9 that night, so we decided to walk around Skagway for a bit.

 

 

 

 

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Although we didn’t go in, here is a little history lesson about what is probably the most infamous building in town:

 

 

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"Our Business is Your Pleasure"

 

 

 

 

The Red Onion Saloon, now a National Historic Building, was Skagway’s most exclusive bordello. Built in 1897 with planks cut by Capt. William Moore, the founder of Skagway, the Red Onion Saloon opened for business in 1898, serving alcohol on the first floor while the upper floor satisfied more than the prospector’s thirst. The brothel consisted of ten tiny cubicles, called cribs, each ten foot by ten foot with three exits, one into the hallway and one into each of the adjoining rooms. Each room also had a hole in the floor which connected to the cash register in the bar by means of a copper tube.

 

 

In order to keep track of which girls were busy, the bartender kept ten dolls on the back bar, one for each of the girls in each of the rooms. When a girl was with a customer, her doll was laid on its back. When she sent her money down the tube, the doll was returned to the upright position signaling to the waiting prospectors that she was ready for business. The bartender safeguarded the girl’s earnings, usually $5.00, preferably in gold, while in the crawl space between the floors, loose floorboards hid nuggets and private tips.

 

 

Because the rooms were divided by single planks toe-nailed into the ceiling and floor, not much sound-proofing was provided. To decorate their cribs, the women stretched linen across the rough planks, then glued wall paper to the cloth. Remnants of the original wall papers still cling to the planks. Some of the girls who worked in Skagway were Birdie Ash, Big Dessie, Popcorn Lil, the Oregon Mare, Babe Davenport, Pea Hull Annie, Kitty Faith, the Belle of Skagway and Klondike Kate.

 

 

By late 1899, business began to suffer. Most of the women moved north to Dawson which was closer to the gold fields and had big gambling casinos and dance halls.

 

 

 

 

Depiction of the Mascot Saloon from the gold rush days

 

 

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We did go into a museum and gift shop- Ben especially enjoyed looking at the exhibits detailing the history of the area.

 

 

 

 

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Ben is a history buff with a particular interest in military history, so he was intrigued to learn that the last shots in the US Civil War were fired in Alaska. After the Confederacy had surrendered and President Lincoln was assassinated, the crew of the CSS Shenandoah continued to capture and/or sink Union whaling ships in the Bering Sea.

 

 

 

 

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Continued in Next Post

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Intricate carvings in ivory/jawbone

 

 

 

 

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We walked around town a bit more, looking at landmarks which paid tribute to the mining history of Skagway

 

 

 

 

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Skagway Centennial Statue:

 

 

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Continued in Next Post

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We walked past this salmon stream as we returned to the port. It looks pretty, but at least of half of the salmon had reached the end of their journey and were dead in the water.

 

 

 

 

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Continued

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Before going back to the boat, we passed this restaurant. This would be a great chance to sample some Alaskan seafood. We knew we would be eating soon on board the ship, so we shared one fish and chips and one order of King Crab.

 

 

 

 

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We were really struggling with opening the crab legs until the waitress came over and showed us how to use the little plastic fork to split the shell.

 

 

 

 

We had a great day in Skagway. We had dinner and I don’t think we did anything else that evening.

 

 

 

 

Next: Glacier Bay

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Subscribing! I'll be doing this same itinerary next May!

 

Welcome!

 

The sights in Alaska were amazing and cruising is the perfect way to experience all of the different ports of call and scenery.

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Ice Ice Baby!

Glacier Bay

Saturday August 19

 

 

 

 

Today we would be staying on the ship as we cruised through the sites of Glacier Bay.

 

 

We woke to a beautiful sunrise and even a rainbow from our balcony.

 

 

 

 

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We went up on deck and grabbed a quick bite to eat for breakfast while we listened to the National Park Rangers who had come on board. They outlined what we would be seeing and when

 

 

 

 

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When we were sailing by Gloomy Knob, the rangers suggested we look up in the hills for mountain goats:

 

 

 

 

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Continued

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