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Old June 16th, 2003, 12:56 PM
S & T
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Default Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

Any info to these first time cruisers on Alaska or the Sky. Plus how is the wildlife viewing for bears and orca in Aug.
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Old June 16th, 2003, 04:22 PM
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Default Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

We sailed the Sky in August 1991. Thought the ship was great.

We did not see any bear however. I heard someone say Orca had been spotted but I didn't see any, nor were there any announcments.

Leaving Glacier Bay and into Icy Straits we say many Humpback's however. The Captain slowed way down so we had a long "show". We never got really close but could see spouts and flukes and one breach pretty well.

We also saw many dolphin from the ship the whole trip.

I'm jealous.

Happy Sailing
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Old June 16th, 2003, 04:24 PM
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Default Re: Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

Oops, that was August 2001!
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Old June 17th, 2003, 12:52 AM
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Default Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

Any bear viewing will require a tour. Consider out of Ketchikan for black bears- floatplane to Anan, my preference, Neets Bay, Traitors Cove. For Brown bears- Admirality Island, floatplane out of Juneau- best bargain around is Denali Park. For orcas- best is to take a tour out of Victoria BC or Friday Harbor Wa. Only viewable on Juneau trips every 5-10 days. Last sailing day back there can be opportunites for viewing but be prepared to invest a GREAT deal of time out on the front open deck with a good pair of wide angle binoculars- consider hours for a few minute view. Very few passengers are usually willing, but I have been greatly rewarded and am always out during most of the daylight sailing.
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Old June 17th, 2003, 06:44 AM
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Default Re: Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

Karen16-

We are taking a trip to Neets bay to view the bears. You said that the best bargain around is Denali. Are there trips from there to view the bears? We are there for two days and I would much rather do it from there than from the ship. Any advice is appreciated.

Thanks
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Old June 17th, 2003, 07:33 AM
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Default Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

HI.. Don't know about Aug.. We just returned on the 14th.
We booked the jet boat tour on the Sky out of Victoria, B.C. We took it on the last port day of our cruise and saw plenty of orcas. The boat had a marine biologist for a commentator and we lucked into an L-pod of about 20 orcas, including a couple of juviniles. It was great viewing as we drifted with them. We were among them for about 20 mins. and they were jumping, playing, and just putting on a terrific show...It takes about 20-30 minutes to get to the area (at 35 mph) where the orcas were and it was cooooold!! The boat supplies a heavy coat, gloves, and a knit headwarmer. Even had hot chocolate on the return trip as we toured the B.C. harbor. It was well worth the 64.00 p/p.
Back at the Grind..
SSaFWs..ED
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Old June 17th, 2003, 08:11 AM
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Default Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

We are taking a trip to Neets bay to view the bears. You said that the best bargain around is Denali. Are there trips from there to view the bears? We are there for two days and I would much rather do it from there than from the ship. Any advice is appreciated.


What are you planning at Denali Park? A main reason to go there is to take the buses in. I highly recommend you consider the SHUTTLE bus to Eielson- should have brown bear viewing on the trip- take a good pair of wide angle binoculars. As for Neets Bay- this is black bears. The difference with Denali bears they are NOT the salmon eaters and are about 1/2 the size compared to coastal brown bears.

As for orca trips, I always take the zodiacs. You wear floatation suits which are plenty warm. The benefit is supurb on the water viewing. Superior to the boat trips in my opinion. I go with Seacoast Expeditions the most but Prince of Whales is right on the Inner Harbor. Reservations are necessary, these trips always sell out.
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Old June 17th, 2003, 12:28 PM
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Default Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

Thanks everyone for all the info. It is great
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Old June 18th, 2003, 07:20 AM
Ratdog3
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Default Re: Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

Thanks Karen that cleared things up for me about the bears. Yes we are taking the shuttle to Eielson. I've been reading about this and from what I understand these shuttles go way into the park. Can you get off and wait for another shuttle bus back if you don't want to go any further? We are also spending 2 days in Copper river. Any suggestions?

Thanks
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Old June 18th, 2003, 08:46 AM
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Default Re: Alaska, Sky on Aug. 16

If you book the Eielson shuttle, it has about a 30 min stop at Eielson, if you want to return on a different bus, give your name to the ranger who will put you on a later bus depending on availablity. If you purchase your tickets to Wonder Lake or Kantishna- you can also get off at Eielson and return on a different bus. Eielson is 66 miles, Wonder Lake 85 and Kantishna 90 miles.
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