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Family History: Uncle Justin >

[Comments] (2) Alaska Travelogue: We're back from Alaska! I took notes.

Wednesday, May 24: We flew to Anchorage and took a bus down to the port in Whittier. We saw some white mountain sheep on cliffs high above the road, and three moose. Also, the bus drove through a 2 1/2 mile train tunnel to get to Whittier. I thought it was cool. Being a bus full of people, we got to go to the front of the line (one-way tunnel).

Thursday, May 25: A sea day. We cruised up College Fjord and got up early to see the Smith and Harvard glaciers. The captain turned the boat all the way around so people could view them from their balconies. We didn't have a balcony, so we went out on deck. My first glacier! There was ice floating everywhere in the water. The cruise ships, by the way, employ local pilots in each area to help with navigation.

Friday, May 26: Sitka. We decided to go on a boat tour to see sea otters. We saw two large rafts of them, a bald eagle, and also a pile of sea lions hauled out on a rock. I got sick on the boat.

Saturday, May 27: Juneau. This was the best day. For our first tour, we took a helicopter up to Mendenhall glacier and the Juneau ice field. Flying in a helicopter is a lot like riding Soarin' Over California, only somewhat louder. It's not bumpy like a plane, you just float up and float down. We got awesome views of the glaciers, with "Windex" ice, and the pilot took us between two mountain peaks. We went dog sledding on the ice field at the camp there. The huskies were so cute and friendly. They live to pull the sled for you! I "drove" first, and that was a bit scary, but I didn't fall off. We also got to hold some new little puppies - so cute!

Since we were in Juneau for 16 hours, we also bought a ticket to the Mt. Roberts Tramway. We took it up twice, went on some muddy hikes around the area, and we saw a marmot! It looked like a giant guinea pig with a bushy tail.

Sunday, May 28: Skagway. We had another awesome tour in this town. we took a fast boat out to Glacier Point, where we took a bus ride and a hike down to the river running off the Davidson Glacier. Here we canoed up to the lake and around in the face of the glacier, also getting some close looks at the icebergs. It is really hard to get a perspective on a glacier, without a person on it, or something to compare it too. It didn't rain at all on our cruise (amazing!) but this day was very cold. They gave us muck boots and raingear - I was wearing three shirts and four jackets! It was really amazing to see the glacier up close like that.

Some cool glacier facts: It takes 100 feet of snow to make glacial ice. Most glaciers are receeding. When they recede they leave morraines, or piles of dirt, which general have ice under them for years after. (you can see a cool cross section of one in our pictures) Long Island is an example of a glacial morraine. Seriously!

Sunday was also the Midnight Buffet. We didn't go last time because John was sick, but we got up (after a four hour nap) and went. It was cool to see, I guess.

Monday, May 29: Ketchikan. We slept in. We didn't have any tours, so we wandered around town, and found a walking tour brochure. We did most of both of the tours and got a nice perspective on the city. We walked along a road on a cliff overlooking the sea and got to see several bald eagles perched on the tops of trees growing down the cliff. We were so close to them! Bought huckleberry gummy bears.

Well, that sums it up. We had such an awesome time with the "old" people. The animals were so beautiful and fun, and I especially loved spending time with my husband, all to myself! I'll link to the pictures once they finish uploading.

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Comments:

Posted by Alyson at Sat Jun 03 2006 21:07

Was your sickness motion related? John's? Yuck! Horray for sleeping in and playing with puppies and seeing beautiful nature! It sounds like you had a great trip.

Posted by John at Sun Jun 04 2006 09:18

Susie gets motion sick. I didn't get sick. I got sick last year in Mexico, but it had nothing to do with motion sickness. I came down with that age old vacation sickness that happens to people that don't relax enough, and when they do, they get sick. I must be relaxing more now, cuz I didn't get sick this time.


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