Joe and Nancy

Joe and Nancy
Our Home on Wheels (Click on image above for our web albums.)

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Skagway, Alaska, Part 1

After leaving Destruction Bay at Lake Kluane, in the Yukon Territory, it was time to again leave Canada and go back into Alaska, Skagway to be exact. After a brief stop in Whitehorse, and a few more pics and some groceries at the Canadian Superstore, we drove on down the Alaska Highway 1 to Highway 2, turned right and drove on thru Yukon, thru BC briefly, and on in to the US Border.  It happens that the Canadian Customs checkpoint is 21 miles from downtown Skagway, and the US checkpoint is 12 miles.  After a few questions from the Border officer, it was time for a 12 mile, 8% down grade.  Whew!  Used the exhaust brake and 1st/2nd gear almost all the way down.
Along the way at Emerald Lake, BC, I caught Steve W climbing up on his roof to seal up a seam that had started to leak a little.  And we were about to drive thru a lot of rain.  Good choice Steve.  Below, a view of the lake.
Our first full day in Skagway had us on a high speed boat trip to Juneau.  Wow! What a boat.  Our whole tour group, 46 in all, and four other folks were on the boat for the 3 hour ride.
Along the (both going & coming) we saw a humpback whale gorging herself (the boat operator/owner said it was a cow) each time on herring.
Note how close in shore she is, I guess chasing the huge school of herring and trapping them against the shore.
I could post a hundred pics of the whale, but three should suffice my readers here in this blog.  I have the rest of them posted on my google+ photo website, linked by the header photo at the top of this blog.
When we were cruising, I spent a lot of time on the deck aft, while some would rather not brave the 35 knot breeze boat speed.
Here are some of the folks getting their pics of the whale.  Above, far left, is the captain/owner of the boat.  He is very knowledgeable of the area, and resides in Haines.  His daughter, "Lib" was first mate, waiter, server, line handler, and tour guide.  She was beginning her senior year of high school the next day.
Above, Lib securing a line.  Below, Lisa, Nancy & Paul.
Above, jockeying for the best shot of the humpback and below, the cabin and the captain at the wheel.
And we also celebrated a birthday for Joan, Jay's wife.  Sharon is to the left.
Now, the 3 hour ride included some of the most awesome mountain side scenery you'll ever see in your life time.  I can't possibly post all the pics on this boat trip to Juneau and back, but here are a few.  We left at 8 and returned at 8, so it was a long day, with a three hour stop in Juneau.
It was a grey type of day, but the glaciers emit a beautiful shade of blue when no sun is out.
Well, this blog is already too long, so I'll close for now and in the next blog I'll continue with more events and scenes form Juneau & the Mendenhall Glacier National Park, and a walk around Juneau.  So, from Teslin in the Yukon, RVing Beach Bums finishing up breakfast at the Yukon Motel & RV Park, headed for Watson Lake, still in the Yukon.