It's Wednesday and we are approaching Ketchikan. Sunday was Juneau where, amazingly, it was sunny and around 70 degrees all day. We went kayaking towards Mendenhall glacier, saw seals playing in the water and lots of bald eagles. It was perfect. Monday was Skagway, where it had been raining for the past 5 days and rained all day. We had signed up for a "strenuous" hike on the Chilkoot Trail, a short distance within the huge hike the gold rushers took with 50-lb packs on their back -- and they did it around 40 times to get the required 1 ton of supplies to the top of the mountain. Our hike in the constant rain took us up 700' in muddy, slippery conditions, followed by a float down the rushing river in a rubber raft. I now have a cold and lots of charley horse, but I'm glad I did it.
Yesterday's trip to Hubbard Glacier was amazing. The Mercury got closer to the glacier than any other time this season. We saw lots of calving going on in spectacular weather. Very awesome.
The ship is beautiful, having recently been renovated. We're finding excellent service all over, and wonderful entertainment. Dinners have been exceptional. Buffet food is a little disappointing but there certainly is a lot of variety. Entertainment in Cova Cafe and Michael's Club is excellent. I'm sitting in Cova now with a pot of tea and an almond croissant...
We have a short, level hike today in Ketchikan followed by a motorized rubber raft ride. Tomorrow is our last day onboard, a day at sea, and Friday we're back in Vancouver.
We've been to Alaska once before and this time is even nicer. I recommend it!