Friday, July 31, 2009

Skagway, Alaska

Skagway, Alaska, the second port of call, was born during the historic Gold Rush of 1898. Thousands of gold-crazed adventurers, seeking the best starting point for their arduous trek found the deepest penetration possible by boat, at the northern tip of the Lynn Canal. This is how Skagway was born. Visitors can relive the past by riding the world-famous White Pass and Yukon Railroad and then visit a historic gold-rush camp. There you can browse through cabins and tents that were once used as a bakery and a saloon. Another point of interest is the Chikat Glacier system, where frozen rivers of ice surge between high mountain peaks.

I hope all that impressed you because I copied it directly off the Daily Compass, which Royal Carribean Cruise Line so kindly leaves in our room each night! They think of everything! All you have to do is eat, nap and drink in the beauty of you surroundings! It's all very lovely and restful.

There was a lot to see on Skagway! Below is a my pictorial perspective of our stroll through Skagway.....

A new twist on the old 'bottle tree' concept.

Flower 'beds'!

Vintage baggage cars.

Interesting old architecture.

Patriotic bunting and flags were on display to celebrate the 4th of July.

Everyone will tell you this train ride is a must! We didn't listen, unfortunately.

Hand painted mural, depicting the Alaskan gold rush.

Antique cars are availible for drivng tours around town.Streetview away from the docks....

....towards the docks where boats , anchor.

Great old buildings! Love the gilded 'onion dome', a remnant of Russian influence.

This facade of this building is an interesting pattern made by 'sticks' !

So cool!

...and apparently durable, to be over 100 yrs. old!

Horse drawn carriages are plentful.

Surrounded by lush mountains.


Lot's and lot's, and lots of shops!...

...and interesting sites.

Sugar Mamas looked inviting!

Thankfully, these nice ladies made it easier to walk on by, chew sugarfree gum and drink bottled water. There were several churches in Skagway. Which reminds me to ask apologize for posting that last picture....tackiness is so unattractive!

Love these weathered colors!

I just love old cars....and trucks and houses and furniture and dishes and fabrics and books and...

Can you say C-a-d-i-l-l-a-c ?

There's more!


Can you read the name?


Oh! How cute!

WOW!...I don't know what to say?

I'm continually amazed at how well things grow up here. Everything is so green,

and colorful,

and big!
This is rhubarb! least 4 feet tall!

... chippy paint and galvanized metal and white clay flower pots and old concrete garden urns .....

Skagway was a 'happening place'.

My favorite!

...and old watches and buttons and pencils and letters and milliner roses and prisms and taxider
Walking, walking, walking.....

Did I say how much I love old houses? I wish I could figure out how I could get paid to go inside old houses and look around! My dream job.

...and anitique safes and old oil paintings and photos and watering cans and metal garden chairs.

Back to the boat! So long glad i don't hve time to run back down to Sugar Mamas!

Coming up! Juno! The Capital of Alaska.......and a memorable day!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

God's country! - Misty Fjords

On day four, we woke up to find we were traveling through a narrow passage, called the Misty Fjord. Photographs can hardly capture the amazing beauty of such a place. The peacefulness, the quiet, the absence of civilization, the magnicance and the scale are something one simply must experience. The captain of the Serenade of the Seas, had carefully considering today weather and water conditions before deciding to take the ship through this narrow passage. Our destination? To travel as far back as we could, and get a close look at a glacier. It is hard to explain how 'out of place' a 975 ft. cruise ship must look in such vast wilderness. And yet, I was so grateful for the opportunity to experience the breathtaking beauty of what one friend called, "God's country". It was very cold on deck. Everyone was definetly bundled up!

The we traveled into the Fjord we began to see icebergs. First small and then large.

This is a large blue iceberg is glacier ice.

Finally, we get a glimpse of the glacier. The ship captain will get as close as he can, then rotate the ship 360 degrees, 3 times. Giving everyone a good view.Here are several pictures of sea lions...just hanging out! Again, the scale of things is really hard to comprehend....the average adult sea lion weighs 800 lbs.

We were told that the mountains with rounded top's were less than 3,500 feet and were shaped by glaciers. Those with jagged points, above 3,500 feet.

A hug waterfall and a large piece of glacier ice floating in the water.

The color was amazing!

My best close-up of the glacier.

Glaciers are hundreds of feet of frozen water/river. If a man were standing at the base of this he would be barely visable. We're talking big! Oh, and those are not tire tracks. Unless they were made by the 'jolly green giant' in his big monster truck!