Mrs. Kuki and I ordered room service breakfast today to act as our wake up call
before we headed out for our helicopter ride and dog sledding. They called us to say our order was on it's way. I thought this was pretty clever. It wouldn't leave the person delivering the food standing in the hallway banging on our door to wake us up.
The Vision's passengers tendered into Juneau, as the pier was already filled with the Dawn Princess, the Ryndam, and the NCL Sky. We were in one of the early groups getting off for shore excursions, and the process was fairly painless.
We were taken by bus to the Telemaco offices and landing pads to prepare for our excursion. They gave us Glacier boots that slid over our footwear, and climbed aboard our chopper for an amazing ride above Mendenhall Glacier, and over to Norris Glacier, where the dog camp is located. As we landed the sled dogs started barking wildly. I imagined they were begging not to be chosen for my sled. Each group was supplied with a musher (sled driver). Brian was our guy. He has us help hook up the team. At one point Tommy, one of the beautiful sled dogs, jumped up on me. Obviously begging me to spare him the ardous task. This team of dogs was amazing, carrying us across the snow covered glacier with ease. Brian stopped the sled a number of times to allow us time to relax, enjoy the view, and change positions. On one portion of the ride I was seated immediately behind the dogs. At that time a Kuki thought ocurred to me. That's why everyone wants to be the lead dog. For the others, the view never changes.
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Disembarking Click for pic.
Once the sled started moving it was obvious these dogs love to run. It was a great jaunt around the glacier, and Brian was an excellent musher, and guide
As we returned to base camp I noticed the clouds had dropped pretty low over them mountains, and asked how bad it has to get before they start canceling flights in.
Brian showed us some landmarks on that mountain which are used as markers to make that determination.
When we got back to base camp there was no helicopter returning to pick us up. The heliport had radioed tosay that the helicopters had turned back with passengers
Glacier Click for pic.
onboard due to the cloud conditions. They were going be coming back up to the mountain
empty to pick us up. The thought did run through my mind that if it's not deemed to safe to bring more people up, why is it safe to pick us up?
About a half-hour late, the helicopter arrived to get us, and return us to where we began the tour. By then the cloud cover seemed to be breaking up, and our return to the heliport was a scenic and uneventful flight.
For those who may be concerned about climbing aboard a helicopter I can only say go for it! I hate flying in airplanes, but in a chopper you barely notice any movement. It really is awesome!
After our return to town Mrs. Kuki and I headed to the
Saloon Click for pic.
Red Dog Saloon for lunch. At least during the day the Red Dog is not quite the happening place that Skagway's Red Onion is. The place was packed and the burgers were good, but it just doesn't have the same upbeat atmosphere of the Red Onion.
Before heading back to the ship I, of course, stopped in to the Alaska Fudge Co. It's my favorite fudge in the world, and I bought enough for all of us. Now, if you want a taste, you'll have to hope I don't eat it all before I get home
Tonight is Novel Quest, and I can't get wait to get our table mates into the game.
They're all RCI rookies, so they don't know what to expect. Shhhhh, don't tell!