Lyn & Joanne's RV Adventure to Alaska travel blog

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


A nice sunny day with light wind for a Glacier(Columbia) Fjord Sea Life cruise. We boarded the boat and left port about 12:15pm, later than advertised. Right off the bat in Prince William sound we saw a bunch of Sea otters at play, rest, or work, or whatever they do. We were a able to stay around them for a while to take pictures, but then had to proceed on our way. One of the most interesting things we saw in the first part of the tour was the terminus of the Alaskan Pipeline. It is a huge terminal with lots of storage tanks, as pictures will attest, and I assume quite a few employees. We did spot one Humpback Whale which I got good shots of his tail "Fluking", then we saw some Sea Lions sunning themselves on a Coast Guard buoy, which was quite amusing. Then we took a small deviation thru a rock cut and we saw Eagles standing guard. The crew served a light lunch of seafood chowder and a bagel with cream cheese while we were motoring towards the glacier. We proceeded up to the Columbia Glacier arm and on this very unusual and special day, we were able to approach the Columbia Glacier to within about one mile. The captain and crew were very impressed as some of the younger crew members had never been this close to the glacier before. We had to weave thru lots of icebergs and smaller ice to get this close, and if the wind had been in any different direction than what it was this day would not have been possible. Even as it was, if the wind had shifted and blown in to the bay, we would have been trapped and unable to get out. We spent quite a bit of time at the glacier and the colors and hues of some of the icebergs and smaller pieces if ice were spectacular. We did see some Sea Otters at play down in this area as well. It was quite cold in the area of the glacier.........I was out on the walkway the whole time and I think "Global Warming" be damned! It was darned right cold!!! The captain then said we had to leave as it would take us quite a while to weave our way out of the bay thru all this ice flow before we were in relatively ice free water and out of danger. Once out of harms way, we worked our way to an area where it was known that there was a Stellar Sea Lion colony. This was also spectacular, and they inhabit this area year round. It was easy to see the big bulls who were in charge, and the younger ones who were fighting for position. There were lots of sea birds here too. We got some good shots of "Puffins" along the way. We then headed back towards Valdez and the captain pointed out the place where the "Exxon Valdez" made a mess. Doesn't seem like it would be hard to miss. The captain of the Exxon Valdez really screwed up because it was no problem to work past this point with out trouble. We passed some oil tankers that had filled up at Valdez and were heading for the "lower 48" to satisfy our hunger for Alaskan oil! One good thing, was that it is now a requirement for any tanker in these waters to have a double hull. They also must have a local pilot at the helm until they are clear of these waters.

Back at port at 7:15pm and we had a briefing to Tok, AK, then Joanne and I walked to the small boat harbor area, ran into John & Kathy and we decided to have dinner together at Mike's place. It was very good.

The 4 of us walked slowly back towards camp, said good night and we went to bed.



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