Whales and Glaciers: Alaska by Sea

posted in: Canada, Travel, U.S.A. 0


Alaska By Sea Does Not Disappoint:

glaciers, humpback whales, orcas, dolphins, seals and sea otters.

Mountains of Glacier Bay, Alaska

I had the thrill of cruising along the coast of British Columbia’s inside Passage and up into Alaska this past summer,  I’ve always been obsessed with the Arctic ever since my dad visited Hay River NWT and brought me back an ookpik (Inuit-made owl souvenir) when I was a child. Then—as a summer job—I waitressed at a hotel near the Arctic Circle in the Yukon as a University student. I also spent a summer camping in the the Yukon—researching a novel I was writing—a few years ago. The Alaskan cruise was my third trip into the Arctic and it won’t be my last. I hope you enjoy a few pics from my adventures by sea.

This beautiful humpback came to the surface for a mouthful of fish after blowing a bubble net. More views of her impressive tail below:

Another humpback whale—near Juno, Alaska

Our most northern stop was in Glacier Bay, Alaska. The Bay is surrounded by many glaciers flowing into the ocean and the water truly is glacier blue.

Peter and I above—the slight Arctic glacial breeze is chilly even under the August sunshine. 

Sea otters live in the Bay at the base of the glaciers. They are playful and social—so much fun to watch. They’re able to live in such frigid temperatures due to their extremely dense, water-resistant fur that provides insulation.

Otters in Glacier Bay, Alaska

Glacier Bay, Alaska

Glacier Bay, Alaska. The Arctic is melting far too quickly as Arctic temperatures are rising at a greater speed than the rest of Earth.

Cruising near Glacier Bay, Alaska. So many blues and greens; it may be the most beautiful place on Earth.

Ocean kayaking near Ketchikan, Alaska.

I have a seemingly innate love of the North and the water. Learning that my DNA is northern and coastal—Irish, Norse, Finnish and Baltic—inspires me believe that DNA memory is alive and well in us all.

Peter and I in a K2

Starfish spotted ocean Kayaking off the coast of Ketchikan, Alaska

The picturesque town of Ketchikan, Alaska

Hiking near Skagway, Alaska

Skagway, Alaska

I’ve spent time in Dawson City, Yukon—heart of the Klondike. I’ve heard a few stories about how Skagway was the murder capital of the Klondike and—although Dawson City had the same rough and tumble Klondike crowd—Dawson City was a more peaceful city due to the Canadian North West Mounted Police. Though, of course, this is a colonial history of the towns. I am sure that the Indigenous peoples of Alaska-Yukon have their own stories about whether Dawson City was indeed a relatively peaceful town.

Skagway, Alaska.

I LOVE trains—they hold promise of many stories and adventures that await a traveller and I always check out any old train stations/ trains along my route. 

Cruising the Alaskan Coast on a warm August day. So much natural beauty is overwhelming in the best way.

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