Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Seward, Alaska

072(Chuck)  We arrived in Seward and looked over the parking situation at the Seward City Campground. Boondocking for $15 per night did not seem too bad considering we were on the water. One of the few places available was next to a black and yellow generator. Gregg arrived first and let us know that the generator runs all day. These spaces are quite narrow and you have folks close by on each side. We waited around for a while and Gregg comes back to us and tells us about a spot further down towards the camp host. It was a great spot where the rigs are parked parallel to the water and we had no rigs on each side. It was the best spot on the water and we stayed there four nights. We watched cruise ships, fishing boats and sea otters while we had a backdrop of mountains and glaciers.Our weather for visiting Seward could not have been better; overcast skies each morning and sun each afternoon.

IMG_4842(Jan) Major Marine Tours offers a 7.5 hour Glacier and Wildlife cruise out into Resurrection Bay and over to Aialik Bay in the Kenai Fjords National Park.  We had a two for one coupon in our Tour Saver book so Monday morning Gregg and Sally, Dean & Judy and Chuck and I joined the crew of the Spirit of Adventure and other tourists for a great journey! The seas were calm and we saw lots of mammals & birds! We did have assigned seating for the prime rib-salmon dinnerIMG_4998 but were free to roam all over the boat. And roam we did. We were right at the bow to watch the porpoises and sea otters. Chuck and I had a birds eye view on the top deck to watch the puffins and our first whale sighting. We also saw sea lions, harbor seals and a large pod of whales as we were heading back into Resurrection Bay. The biggest thrill of the day was seeing Holgate and Aialik Glaciers. Both are tidewater glaciers, which means their glacial ice flows right into the sea. At Aialik we were fortunate to see huge chunks of ice calf and crash into the water. Amazing and very loud!

DSC_0194Sea otter floating on their backs, munching seaweed DSC_0433Humpback whales ‘bubble netting’ DSC_0069Sea lions sunning on the rocks

Tuesday Gregg & Sally and Chuck & I went for a long walk down along the boat docks and clear over to the deep pier where the cruise ships come in.  It was a wonderful days to be walking with friends and we topped it off with lunch at a BBQ place, The Smoke Shack. That evening we walked down towards the docks again to watch the salmon go up a small 025stream, watch the fisherman come in with their catch of the day and have ice cream. We walked 7.6 miles that day.

027(Chuck) We had a nice hike while in Seward. Schindels and Sheeleys were our hiking partners for a moderate hike to Exit Glacier. It was the closest hike available to the ice. The longer eight mile hike was to an overlook area. In past years that hike was to the ice, however Exit Glacier, like most of the other glaciers in Alaska, is receding quite rapidly. The ice has shrunk down in size and is no longer as high as it once was. We paused for lunch near the glacier and it was a good time to be with friends.

059(Jan) After saying good-bye to Sheeleys we spent the rest of Wednesday going to the Museum & then doing laundry. The Alaska Sea Life Center was a real treat. Besides fantastic exhibits we spent a long time watching the Sea Birds in their Aviary and050 then went down stairs to the aquarium part to watch the underwater activity. That was so much fun! We got to watch the puffins dive and fly through the water for several minutes at a time. There were several tanks downstairs with harbor seals, an octopus, jelly fish, sea lions and lots of fish. That evening we went for another walk along the docks and said good-bye to Gregg & Sally as we are going to be off to Whittier in the morning.  It’s been a real blessing traveling with the Poutneys, Sheeleys, Schindels and Forester/Murrays and we will miss being with them as we continue our Alaska Journey.

1 comment:

Sharon Del Rosario said...

All your pictures are great, but the one of the glacier calving is superb! Glad you're having such a good time. Sorry you have to cut your trip short, but we understand - life happens.

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