ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Seattle to Alaska's Inside Passage on the Carnival Spirit - Alaska Edtion

Updated on December 28, 2019
My Esoteric profile image

Among other things, ME loves to travel and when possible write about it.

ON OUR WAY

Click thumbnail to view full-size
INSIDE THE SEATTLE TERMINAL AT PIER 91 - 8/21/2011LOOKING AT THE CARNIVAL SPIRIT FROM THE REAR END - 8/21/2011SEATTLE SKYLINE FROM THE CARNIVAL SPIRIT - 8/16/2011
INSIDE THE SEATTLE TERMINAL AT PIER 91 - 8/21/2011
INSIDE THE SEATTLE TERMINAL AT PIER 91 - 8/21/2011 | Source
LOOKING AT THE CARNIVAL SPIRIT FROM THE REAR END - 8/21/2011
LOOKING AT THE CARNIVAL SPIRIT FROM THE REAR END - 8/21/2011 | Source
SEATTLE SKYLINE FROM THE CARNIVAL SPIRIT - 8/16/2011
SEATTLE SKYLINE FROM THE CARNIVAL SPIRIT - 8/16/2011 | Source

THE CRUISE, as all of my cruises have been, to-date, was on Carnival Cruise Line; in this case the Spirit, of the class of ships known by the same name. My wife and I sailed the Spirit once before, in 2004, when we went to Hawaii out of Vancouver, B.C.; coincidentally, the ship's captain, Captain Volte, was the same captain of our first Caribbean cruise in 2003.

The trip started August 16, 2011, after we spent several days visiting Seattle and the surrounding area, on Pier 91, on the North side of Puget Sound.

ALASKAN CRUISE ITINERARY

DAY  
STOP 
ARRIVE 
LEAVE
Tuesday, 8/16/2011  
Seattle, WA  
 
4:00 PM
Wednesday, 8/17/11  
Sea Day 
 
 
Thursday, 8/18/11
Cruise Tracy Arm Fjord (Edington)  
 
 
Friday, 8/19/11
Skagway, AK
7:00 AM
9:00 PM
Saturday, 8/20/11
Juneau, AK
7:00 AM
3:00 PM
Sunday, 8/21/11
Ketchikan, AK
7:00 AM
1:00 PM
Monday, 8/22/11
Victoria, B.C.
7:30 PM
11:59 PM
Tuesday, 8/23/12
Seattle, WA
7:00 AM
 

I Hate to Say it, But the Trip Was a Bit of a Dissapointment

YES, A DISAPPOINTMENT. ALASKAN CRUISES ALWAYS HAVE A LOT OF HYPE surrounding them, but sadly this particular one did not live up to it. This is not to say that my wife and I did not enjoy the trip, we did, very much. But nevertheless our expectations were not met in three major regards; glaciers, mountains (for me), and wildlife (fish or fowl). None of this, of course, was the fault of the cruise line but instead it was location (I think), past experience, and timing.

GLACIERS, MOUNTAINS, and WILDLIFE

Click thumbnail to view full-size
TRAYCY ARM FJIORD AND GLACIERICEBURGETTE
TRAYCY ARM FJIORD AND GLACIER
TRAYCY ARM FJIORD AND GLACIER | Source
ICEBURGETTE
ICEBURGETTE | Source

Glaciers

I HAVE SEEN GLACIERS BEFORE ... ON TV AND IN THE SIERRA NEVADA'S, before it disappeared a few decades ago. It was the advertisements on TV and in magazines that led to my dismay regarding glaciers. Both media showed beautiful, white, massive walls of glaciers falling (well maybe sitting next to) into the sea as we watched of the coast on our ship's perch. Well, that scene may be on a more Northern route, but not on the normal Alaskan cruise.

This doesn't mean we didn't see glaciers and that they weren't big; we did and they are, but they were still somewhat underwhelming. The first one we saw was in the Tracy Arm Fjord and that is when we found out how dirty (not gleaming white as in the commercials and pictures) they were; you can get an idea from the picture.

Tracy Arm Fjord,

A
Tracy Arm:
Tracy Arm, Alaska, USA

get directions

Mountains

HURRICANE RIDGE, OLYMPIA NATIONAL PARK  (It was to overcast in Alaska to get any good mountain shots)
HURRICANE RIDGE, OLYMPIA NATIONAL PARK (It was to overcast in Alaska to get any good mountain shots) | Source

Mountains

IF YOU LIVE ON THE WEST COAST OR HAVE BEEN IN THE ROCKIES a lot, then the old saw "if you've seen one mountain, you've them all" applies. There is no question the mountains in Alaska and the Yukon (Canada) are a sight to behold, especially if you are from a non-mountainous state; but, they were not much different (save for a glacier or two) from what I have lived around most of my life.

OUR FIRST WILDLIFE
OUR FIRST WILDLIFE | Source

Wildlife (what wildlife?)

YES, THAT'S RIGHT, WHAT WILDLIFE? THAT WAS THE GREATEST disappointment of the whole trip. The cruise was 8-days and we saw our first wildlife at our first port-of-call in Skagway ... our at least we thought we did. To the right are a pair of mountain goats perched on, you guessed it, a mountain.

THEY HADN'T MOVED A MUSCLE ON THE HILLSIDE ABOVE CARCROSS, ALASKA.
THEY HADN'T MOVED A MUSCLE ON THE HILLSIDE ABOVE CARCROSS, ALASKA. | Source

After staring at these goats for awhile, leaving to go into a store, and then coming out again to see if they were still there. They were. If fact, they hadn't moved a muscle in 20 minutes; we took a closer look through the telephoto. What we really saw in Carcross, Canada is below.

(Did you know the Carcross is owned by a taxidermist ... that's right - the goats were stuffed ... sighhh.

A few days later, we finally saw a real animal, the only one mind you; it was a bear cub crossing and bear crossing! Really, that was it ... well almost, there were those two dolphin we saw from the ship on the way back. :-(.


THE BIGGEST "ICEBERG" WE SAW
THE BIGGEST "ICEBERG" WE SAW | Source

The Griping is Over

THE ABOVE ASIDE, WE DID HAVE A GREAT TIME SEEING THINGS we had not witnessed before, which I would like to share with you. From the itinerary you'll notice we left on the 16th at 4 PM and spent the next day and night sailing (very, very slowly) North along the Canadian and Alaskan coast. The next morning we were in position to enter Tracy Arm fjord (see map) to see our first glacier.

Below are a set of photos that follow the course the ship took going into and then coming out of Tracy Arm Fjord.

TRACY ARM FJORD

Click thumbnail to view full-size
THIS IS HOW THE WEATHER LOOKED FOR ALMOST THE WHOLE TRIPINSIDE TRACY ARM FJORDGETTING CLOSE TO THE GLACIER ... A BABY ICEBURGINSIDE TRACY ARM FJORDAPPROACHING TRACY ARM GLACIER, THIS IS ABOUT AS CLOSE AS WE COULD GETTO GET CLOSER, YOU HAD TO TAKE ONE OF THE SHIPS BOATS.  THE LARGER BOAT IS AN EXCURSION BOAT.THEY ARE PRETTY CLOSENOTICE THE DIRT THE GLACIER BROUGHT WITH IT DOWN THE MOUNTAINNEAT ROCKSNEAT CLOUDSICEBERGGLOBAL WARMING IS HAVING ITS EFFECT - THIS GLACIER USE TO REACH THE SEAGLOBAL WARMING IS HAVING ITS EFFECT - THIS GLACIER USE TO REACH THE SEA - A CLOSER LOOK... AND A CLOSER LOOKANOTHER VIEW OF THE GLACIER... AND A CLOSE UPLOOKS LIKE BOILING WATER TO MELEAVING TRACY ARMMORE ICE FLOWSIT'S AMAZING HOW HIGH YOU ARE ON THE SHIP
THIS IS HOW THE WEATHER LOOKED FOR ALMOST THE WHOLE TRIP
THIS IS HOW THE WEATHER LOOKED FOR ALMOST THE WHOLE TRIP | Source
INSIDE TRACY ARM FJORD
INSIDE TRACY ARM FJORD | Source
GETTING CLOSE TO THE GLACIER ... A BABY ICEBURG
GETTING CLOSE TO THE GLACIER ... A BABY ICEBURG | Source
INSIDE TRACY ARM FJORD
INSIDE TRACY ARM FJORD | Source
APPROACHING TRACY ARM GLACIER, THIS IS ABOUT AS CLOSE AS WE COULD GET
APPROACHING TRACY ARM GLACIER, THIS IS ABOUT AS CLOSE AS WE COULD GET | Source
TO GET CLOSER, YOU HAD TO TAKE ONE OF THE SHIPS BOATS.  THE LARGER BOAT IS AN EXCURSION BOAT.
TO GET CLOSER, YOU HAD TO TAKE ONE OF THE SHIPS BOATS. THE LARGER BOAT IS AN EXCURSION BOAT. | Source
THEY ARE PRETTY CLOSE
THEY ARE PRETTY CLOSE | Source
NOTICE THE DIRT THE GLACIER BROUGHT WITH IT DOWN THE MOUNTAIN
NOTICE THE DIRT THE GLACIER BROUGHT WITH IT DOWN THE MOUNTAIN | Source
NEAT ROCKS
NEAT ROCKS | Source
NEAT CLOUDS
NEAT CLOUDS | Source
ICEBERG
ICEBERG | Source
GLOBAL WARMING IS HAVING ITS EFFECT - THIS GLACIER USE TO REACH THE SEA
GLOBAL WARMING IS HAVING ITS EFFECT - THIS GLACIER USE TO REACH THE SEA | Source
GLOBAL WARMING IS HAVING ITS EFFECT - THIS GLACIER USE TO REACH THE SEA - A CLOSER LOOK
GLOBAL WARMING IS HAVING ITS EFFECT - THIS GLACIER USE TO REACH THE SEA - A CLOSER LOOK | Source
... AND A CLOSER LOOK
... AND A CLOSER LOOK | Source
ANOTHER VIEW OF THE GLACIER
ANOTHER VIEW OF THE GLACIER | Source
... AND A CLOSE UP
... AND A CLOSE UP | Source
LOOKS LIKE BOILING WATER TO ME
LOOKS LIKE BOILING WATER TO ME | Source
LEAVING TRACY ARM
LEAVING TRACY ARM | Source
Source
MORE ICE FLOWS
MORE ICE FLOWS | Source
Source
Source
IT'S AMAZING HOW HIGH YOU ARE ON THE SHIP
IT'S AMAZING HOW HIGH YOU ARE ON THE SHIP | Source

Next Stop - Skagway, AK

ONCE THE SHOCK AND AWE OF SEEING THE GLACIERS up close and personal, so to speak, we started steaming North toward our first port-of-call, Skagway, AK.

SKAGWAY, AK

A
Tracy Arm, AK:
Tracy Arm, Alaska, USA

get directions

Before getting to Skagway we took a side trip to see a glacier.

B
Skagway, AK:
Skagway, AK, USA

get directions

1st stop on our Alaskan cruise.

C
Carcross, Yukon Territory:
Carcross, YT Y0B, Canada

get directions

Skagway was the jumping off point for one of the most interesting excursions we took on the cruise. It started out has a bus trip up to the Yukon in Canada and then take the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad. I don't remember much of the town itself but I am sure it was quaint and pretty.

The terrain, as one would expect, was gorgeous. We traveled through the mountains until we arrived in a "plain" at a bridge that splits the Bennett and Nares Lakes and leads into Carcross (formerly Caribou), YK, a little berg that reflects the rustic, backwoods flavor of a former gold rush territory; oh yeah, it has its own little desert as well. From there, we took a short trip up to Caribou Crossing Trading Post where my wife and I saw our first real wildlife, a pair of mountain goats on the side of a hill overlooking post ... or so we thought. From there we took the bus back to Carcross and boarded the White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad for the trip back to Skagway. More later, but first some pictures.

On The Way To Carcross, Yukon Canada

Click thumbnail to view full-size
ENTERING THE YU[K]ON (a little maintenance is needed it seems)BOVE ISLAND LOOKOUT POINTBOVE ISLAND A DESERT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MOUNTAINSON THE WAY TO CARCROSSNOT MUCH ROOM THERE!THERE TRAIN BROKE DOWNMAINTENANCEDEEP IN THE VALLEY, STILL ON THE WAY TO CARCROSS BY BUSLOOKING DOWN ON A CLOUDI WATCHED THESE MOUNTAIN GOATS FOR 5 MINUTES OR SO ... AND THEY KEPT STARING RIGHT BACK.I CALLED MY WIFE OUT FROM THE CANADIAN WILDLIFE MUSEUM TO LOOK AT OUR "FIRST ANIMALS"  ... THEN WE TOOK A CLOSER LOOK.  THEY WERE AS STUFFED AS THE ONES IN THE MUSEUMINSIDE THE TRAIN ON THE WAY BACK TO SKAGWAY.
Source
Source
Source
Source
Source
Source
Source
Source
Source
Source
ENTERING THE YU[K]ON (a little maintenance is needed it seems)
ENTERING THE YU[K]ON (a little maintenance is needed it seems) | Source
BOVE ISLAND LOOKOUT POINT
BOVE ISLAND LOOKOUT POINT | Source
BOVE ISLAND
BOVE ISLAND | Source
Source
Source
A DESERT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MOUNTAINS
A DESERT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MOUNTAINS | Source
ON THE WAY TO CARCROSS
ON THE WAY TO CARCROSS | Source
NOT MUCH ROOM THERE!
NOT MUCH ROOM THERE! | Source
THERE TRAIN BROKE DOWN
THERE TRAIN BROKE DOWN | Source
MAINTENANCE
MAINTENANCE | Source
Source
DEEP IN THE VALLEY, STILL ON THE WAY TO CARCROSS BY BUS
DEEP IN THE VALLEY, STILL ON THE WAY TO CARCROSS BY BUS | Source
LOOKING DOWN ON A CLOUD
LOOKING DOWN ON A CLOUD | Source
I WATCHED THESE MOUNTAIN GOATS FOR 5 MINUTES OR SO ... AND THEY KEPT STARING RIGHT BACK.
I WATCHED THESE MOUNTAIN GOATS FOR 5 MINUTES OR SO ... AND THEY KEPT STARING RIGHT BACK. | Source
I CALLED MY WIFE OUT FROM THE CANADIAN WILDLIFE MUSEUM TO LOOK AT OUR "FIRST ANIMALS"  ... THEN WE TOOK A CLOSER LOOK.  THEY WERE AS STUFFED AS THE ONES IN THE MUSEUM
I CALLED MY WIFE OUT FROM THE CANADIAN WILDLIFE MUSEUM TO LOOK AT OUR "FIRST ANIMALS" ... THEN WE TOOK A CLOSER LOOK. THEY WERE AS STUFFED AS THE ONES IN THE MUSEUM | Source
Source
Source
Source
INSIDE THE TRAIN ON THE WAY BACK TO SKAGWAY.
INSIDE THE TRAIN ON THE WAY BACK TO SKAGWAY. | Source

In Search of Wildlife

In one of the pictures above you will see two mountain goats at the Caribou Crossing Trading Post in the Yukon. We thought finally, real Alaskan wildlife. I spotted them first and went to find my wife who had wandered into a wildlife museum. When we came back outside I pointed them out to her.

While we looked up at them I noticed something strange - they hadn't seem to move. So we stared for awhile; they stayed put. It finally dawned on us where we were. The Caribou Crossing Trading Post was owned by a taxidermist. The museum was full of his beautiful work - and so was the mountainside with the two mountain goats.

What a disappointment.

Carcross Yukon Territory and Caribou Crossing Trading Post

Click thumbnail to view full-size
THOSE DAMN FAKE GOATSMESSAGE ROCKI WONDER IF SHE SAID YES?LIVING IN THE YUKONMANY OTHER NICE CURIOS LIKE THIS IN STOREWE BOUGHT THISLEAVING BACK TO SKAGWAY
THOSE DAMN FAKE GOATS
THOSE DAMN FAKE GOATS | Source
Source
Source
MESSAGE ROCK
MESSAGE ROCK | Source
I WONDER IF SHE SAID YES?
I WONDER IF SHE SAID YES? | Source
Source
LIVING IN THE YUKON
LIVING IN THE YUKON | Source
MANY OTHER NICE CURIOS LIKE THIS IN STORE
MANY OTHER NICE CURIOS LIKE THIS IN STORE | Source
WE BOUGHT THIS
WE BOUGHT THIS | Source
Source
Source
Source
Source
LEAVING BACK TO SKAGWAY
LEAVING BACK TO SKAGWAY | Source

Back To Skagway

Click thumbnail to view full-size
A
Mendenhall Gracier:
Mendenhall Glacier, Juneau, AK 99801, USA

get directions

B
Skagway, AK:
Skagway, AK, USA

get directions

C
Carcross, AK:
Carcross, YT Y0B, Canada

get directions

D
Tracy Arm, AK:
Tracy Arm, Alaska, USA

get directions

Juneau Is Next

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Real Wildlife!

It was north of Juneau, at Mendenhall Glacier National Park where we say our first real wildlife. Along with a beautiful eagle (I think) we saw a bear cub. We were standing at stop waiting for a ride when, at a bear crossing very near by, we watched a bear cub scamper across the road and disappear into the forest on the other side. We waited for the mother to join, but, sadly, she never did.

A
Katchican, AK:
Ketchikan, AK 99901, USA

get directions

B
Juneau, AK:
Juneau, AK, USA

get directions

C
Tracy Arm, AK:
Tracy Arm, Alaska, USA

get directions

D
Skagway, AK:
Skagway, AK, USA

get directions

E
Carcross, Yukon:
Carcross, YT Y0B, Canada

get directions

Katchican

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Victoria, B.C. Never Happened

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Victoria, B.C. WAS on the itinerary, but they arrived rather late. If my wife and I were nightclubers, it might have been an okay stop; but we aren't, so we stayed on board.

© 2019 Scott Belford

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment
    • My Esoteric profile imageAUTHOR

      Scott Belford 

      3 months ago from Keystone Heights, FL

      Thanks for reading. All the disappointment means is we will have to take another one so we can see real wildlife. I didn't include it hear until I can find some pictures I thought I included but didn't.

      We went to the Mendenhall glacier (lake) above Juneau. It was there we saw our very first and only wildlife of any note. While waiting for a bus to take us back to Juneau, there was a bear crossing near by. Well damn, if a bear cub go scooting by across the road, at the crossing, and disappeared into the woods on the other side. We kept waiting for the mother, but she never showed up. We also saw what I remember as an eagle there as well. (It might have been another big bird, however.

      I will

    • hard sun profile image

      Don Shepard 

      3 months ago

      Ha..that is a good taxidermist for sure. Fun read even if the cruise was a bit of a disappointment.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)