A Travellerspoint blog

Seward to Valdez

Days 3 to 4

overcast

Today's travelling consisted of a drive to Whittier, on which we saw our first moose and her calf! They are huge! We then took a 6 hour ferry trip through Prince William Sound to get to Valdez. It was raining heavily for the ferry ride so the scenery was not much to look at, but we did get to see a humpback whale :)
When we got to Valdez we went bear hunting, and saw a black bear. We also visited the Salmon Hatchery, hard to explain so check this link out (http://www.valdezalaska.org/what-to-do/salmon-viewing). This was really interesting to see, and we also watched more otters, seals, and a bald eagle that was eating a fish.

The next day 4 of us headed out for a day of kayaking in Prince William Sound. On the way to the meeting point, we saw a black bear in the town! Which is quite rare in the Summer. Kayaking was a 2 hour boat ride to Columbia Glacier, 2 hours of kayaking, lunch, another 2 hours of kayaking, then the boat ride back. The kayaking was absolutely beautiful! We paddled though all the icebergs, most of them were a pretty blue colour, some even cracked off. The Columbia Glacier was also impressive, however due to things like climate change, it has retreated about 16 kilometres. They predict in 20 years it will no longer be there. Even though we had all the wet weather gear, the ice cold water didn't stop at my 5 layers of clothing and trickled up my sleeve all the way to my armpit :( I was freezing.

xx

Posted by georgiaodgers 20:38 Archived in USA Tagged alaska tour valdez Comments (0)

Anchorage - Seward

Days 1 to 2

sunny

Hello Everyone,

I haven't had strong enough wifi to be updating this blog throughout my tour, but I now have 8 hours of waiting in an airport so hopefully I get through the past 9 days in Alaska. Where do I even start, Alaska is absolutely stunning!! Under 1 million people live here, with 98% of the country covered in wilderness that remains pretty much untouched.

We began the first day driving from Anchorage to the seaside town of Seward. On the drive we:
- Stopped at Cooks Inlet and Turnagain Arm. This is where a bore tide occurs regularly, and this is one of few places where it happens in the world. To better understand this I recommend googling it. The wave fills the shallow bay, and can reach heights of up to 10 feet. People can surf this one wave for up to 45 minutes. Here we also filled our drink bottles from the natural springs :) .
- We then had a quick drive through Girdwood, which is famous for its annual Blueberry Festival.
- Lunch was at Alyeska Resort. Alyeska is how the natives pronounce Alaska, and the resort is one of the only ski resorts Alaska has. We did a nice little 'introductory' hike.
- After lunch we drove to Byron Glacier, for our first glacier experience! We had a short walk up to the glacier and spent some time taking photos, walking on the ice, and looking at ice worms. After we stopped at the Alaska Conservation Centre, where we watched the grizzly bears be fed. We got our first taste of Alaska wildlife. I was apprehensive at first because I wanted to see it in the wild, but it was really good to understand what we were looking for when driving along.
- After arriving in Seward we had dinner and checked out the Yukon Bar. Here the walls and roof were covered in $1 bills, with peoples names and what country they were from on it. I put one up :)

Day 2 is Seward:
- A 7 and a half hour cruise through Kenai Fjords National Park. This had to be my favourite day! We happened to be very lucky and had beautiful weather for the entire tour, in Alaska this is very rare. The cruise was AMAZING. We saw sea otters, sea lions, harbour seals, puffins, bald eagles, and mountain goat. But the most beautiful thing of all was the two pods of Killer Whales, and the 3 humpback whales we go to see. Our tour guide Abby, had done this cruise 10 times while guiding in Alaska, and only one had she seen whales. Sadly for her she couldn't come with us this day :( . The cruise also took us to 2 glaciers where we watched chunks of ice break off which resulted in a loud noise like thunder.
- After the cruise 4 of us did the hike up Mt Marathon where we got amazing views of Seward. Only one of us made it to the top, us girls piked out because we didn't feel the need to be on our hands and knees to climb.

xx

Posted by georgiaodgers 19:24 Archived in USA Tagged alaska anchorage seward Comments (0)

Last day in Anchorage

sunny 18 °C

Today I was not left with a lot to do. Most of the attractions here are related to the native cultures, the 1964 earthquake, and the wildlife. With the things I had already done I had pretty much covered it, and things were starting to look repetitive. So instead I walked into another part of town for a look around, took some photos of the mountains (even hazier than yesterday :() I stopped for lunch at Snow City Café, apparently the best in Anchorage, and it lived up to expectations. I was told at the beginning I would have a 35 minute wait to get a table, but it ended up been about 10, and the meal came out quickly. The way they eat here is unbelievable. The sugar and fat is just laid on everything. We have milkshakes. But they have apple pie or strawberry shortcake milkshakes. Menus in Australia have so much variety. Here the main food groups seem to be burgers, pizza, tacos, hotdogs, greasy breakfasts..... and more burgers. Even when the menu has a list of burgers, and a list of sandwiches, it still seems to come out to me looking like a burger. This has happened multiple times now so it can be a mistake.

My tour starts tomorrow, and I'm looking forward to some company, and not having to ask for a table for one! We are starting off with two nights in the Kenai Fjords National Park :)

xx

Posted by georgiaodgers 20:08 Archived in USA Tagged landscapes mountains alaska anchorage Comments (1)

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