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OVATION May 13-24 *LIVE* in ALASKA w/lots of photos

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Hey everyone...  it's been a while! But I'm back, and ready for another review.

 

I have been waiting for this sailing with anticipation more so than any other sailing since Quantum's first ever Caribbean sailing Dec 1, 2014. In fact, I had Anthem booked 3 years ago and had to move my deposit over to another ship as the timing did not work for me, and never re-booked Anthem. I've been yearning to get on another Quantum Class sailing as I really loved Quantum.

 

 

I shared my Quantum review above with my roll call as many cruisers on this sailing have never been on a Q Class ship. That first photo is epic! Hardly anyone has been on the front bow area of the ship since Quantum, not even on Anthem. And now with the All Access Tour scaled down in half, it's no longer offered. If you've never been on Q CLass and would like a trip down memory lane, have a look at Quantum above.

 

Back to Ovation and Alaska... I've been party to many "Q Class in Alaska" threads over the last 5 years here in CC. I was a HUGE fan since day one that a Q Class ship would be a great hit and best seller for Alaskan itineraries. I just couldn't believe it when they sent a totally inner focused ship with a fully exposed top deck (in Alaskan weather) the Explorer to the Pacific Northwest. Totally stupid in my opinion. But alas, 5 years in the making and Ovation is finally here... in my own home town no less!

 

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Vancouver is beautiful and consistently voted in the top 20 cities to visit and/or live in in the world. Those cruisers who are too lazy to hang around a day pre or post cruise are doing themselves an injustice. Above you see the downtown core of Vancouver, with Canada Place Pier in the lower right (the "Sails"). To get their, Ovation has to transit under the Lion's Gate Bridge through a small pass in the upper right before reaching open ocean. The bridge is 198 feet mid span... Q Class is 198 feet tall on a good day. Uhm.... ok.... so there's an issue here.

 

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Above is the 178 foot tall Radiance going under the bridge with only 20 feet clearance. So how will Ovation get under?? Well, the current Transpacific from Hawaii will be arriving early to Vancouver the night before debarkation at 8pm in order to get the lowest tide level possible. Not only that, I suspect we'll witness the rare event of the funnels being retracted. And even with all that, there's supposedly about a 5 foot clearance of the Lion's Gate Bridge. I've also been involved in many Panama Canal threads regarding size of ships, and which ships may or may not pass under the Bridge of Americas on the Pacific side of the Panama Canal... this sailing re-enforces the best answers given by BillH48 and ChengP on those threads, that likely only perfect conditions would allow for a Q Class ship to get under the BoA as it is a sister bridge with same span height as the Lion's Gate.

 

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We are currently experiencing summer weather this week in Vancouver. Today it was 25 degree Celcius/about 75 degrees F. On Sunday and Monday it cools a bit to 65F/18C... still great weather for a beautiful sail-in and sail-away from the port of Vancouver. If anyone is around Stanley Park on Monday night, they should definitely get to a view point somewhere to watch the ship leave. According to slack tide charts found by AlanF on our role call (Thx Alan!) we are estimating Ovation to leave Canada Place around 6:45-7 and get to the bridge somewhere between 7:10-7:30 to hit that low tide.

 

So why this itinerary? It's one of a kind and is not being repeated. 4 port stops, 2 glacier viewings, and basically (for me anyways) a round trip Vancouver-to-Seattle sailing which is a simple bus trip back up from Seattle when the cruise is finished. The itinerary is outstanding with a ton of extended time at the ports.

 

Date

Port

Arrive

Depart

Monday, May 13

Vancouver, BC, Canada

 

5:00pm


Tuesday, May 14

At Sea

   

Wednesday, May 15

At Sea

   

Thursday, May 16

Icy Strait Point, AK

9:00am

8:00pm


Friday, May 17

Sitka, AK

7:00am

6:00pm


Saturday, May 18

Hubbard Glacier, AK (Cruising)

   

Sunday, May 19

Juneau, AK

7:00am

9:00pm


Monday, May 20

Skagway, AK

7:00am

8:30pm


Tuesday, May 21

Endicott Arm, AK (Cruising)

   

Wednesday, May 22

At Sea

   

Thursday, May 23

At Sea

   

Friday, May 24

Seattle, WA

6:00am


 

 

I'll have VOOM on this cruise, so we'll see the O3b satellite network works for Alaska, especially for all the negative internet reviews on radiance the last few years.

I have a few more posts to add before cruise day on Monday. This is going to be an AWESOME cruise! 😁

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Sign me up, Ovation is our next cruise in September so Looking forward to your report. 

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I’m in. I’m also cruising the Ovation to Alaska in September. I was hoping for a live trip report for the Ovation’s first Alaskan cruise. 

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woohoo following. you know I’ve been looking forward to this! still wish we were sailing get with you 

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YAY a HOOPSTER review!. I'm really interested in your review the Ovation as well Alaska. I always appreciate your attention to detail

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Claudio, are you doing this just to poke me and make me feel sad?  😉  😄 

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So glad some one else thinks the same about Explorer of the seas being bad idea for Alaska.

 

I have done Radiance and then Explorer. I was unhappy on the Explorer for the lack of covered pool. Radiance was wonderful with all the glass areas to look out.

 

RCI wanted to have the largest ship up in Alaska but it was a mess on bad weather days. So very stupid. Bragging rights run amok.

 

I am on the Ovation come Monday and so very excited. I sailed into Vancouver on Radiance from Seward back in 2012. This trip will be unique and will watch us going under bridge. 

 

I enjoyed going under bridge in NJ on Anthem.

Only wish we were stopping in Victoria so I can do Butcharet Gardens again.

 

I think Seattle will have fun with Ovation,  Ncl Joy and Ncl Bliss rotating in and out..

Well off to pack. Going in 2 days early and weather looking good for leaving Phila.

 

 

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So, here I am, suffering from severe post cruise depression following our Symphony Cruise, and what do I find here? The perfect antidote! A Hoopster 95 review! Ovation to Alaska, no less! A cruise I’m hoping to book! I’m in for the duration of this journey! 😀

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I will be following, I board on the 24th May 2019, can't wait.

 

John  😀😁

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CLAUDIO!!!!!

 

I can’t wait - as Hubby and I will be sailing in 2020 to Alaska....We’ll be on the Radiance, as I’ve scored coveted cabin 9256 - the aft corner - but I am anxiously awaiting all of your port reviews, as well as the photos!!!

 

We MISS you!!!

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Following!

Just sailed Ovation out of Sydney to NZ last January and she is a nice ship. Have sailed Anthem also which was a great cruise. 

 

When we sailed Milford sound Ovation was the best and they did a fantastic job giving information over the sound system as to what we were seeing which I am sure they will do while in the glaciers! A lot of great viewing areas on the ship. The captain actually did a 360 turn of the ship while in the middle of Milford sound. 

 

Cheers

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I am hanging on your every word, Hoopster.  Those of us sailing on follow Ovation Glacier, including my party of 4 on the July 26 sailing, are quire short of information, of course.  Also, other posters hint that you are an entertaining reviewer.  Bon voyage!!!

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Yay! I’m departing on the 24th...can’t wait to see Ovation and your review!

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Following as this is a 'must do' trip for me and I think I can

talk my husband into this trip (I hope)...

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Eagerly anticipating this review, we board Ovation on May 24th in Seattle!

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Glad to be on board with you for this sailing.

 

It will be interesting to see how O3b performs this far North in the "limited services" operating area.

 

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With the weather looking good I plan to head out to the bridge to watch her arrival on Sunday. 

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Hoopster,

Will I be able to watch game 7 of the Warriors Rockets on Sunday? Staying at Pan Pacific.

in the US its 12:30 on ABC

Thanks

Alan

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Enjoy your cruise - I cannot wait to see and hear all about it! 

 

We are sailing on her 7/5/19 and cannot wait!  If you are a casino goer, we would love to know what the table minimums are on Black Jack & Ultimate Texas Holdem :)

 

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I just posted a link to this review on the roll call for our August 30 cruise.  So excited to have some firsthand information about the ship and the ports beforehand.  We've been to Alaska a bunch of times, but never sailed on a Q class ship.  Thanks for taking the time to post.

 

Pat

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