On board a small-ship cruise through Alaska’s Inside Passage
Excerpts from my Travel Journal
My recent trip to Alaska was a dream come true. Cruising through southeast Alaska’s Inside Passage on board InnerSea Discoveries’ small cruise ship, the Wilderness Discoverer, I got to experience some of the most breathtaking scenery imaginable. I stood out on the deck every morning and simply allowed the scenery to overwhelm me: dramatic fjords with countless waterfalls, imposing icebergs, awe-inspiring glaciers and mile after mile of verdant forests. I clambered excitedly out of bed every morning while everyone was asleep to admire the views in solitude, then wrote in my Travel Journal to record these scenes. Here are the first few passages from my Travel Journal describing seven glorious mornings in Alaska.
Day 1 – This morning, I woke up to find ourselves cruising through a sea of ice. The captain steered the ship steadily past huge icebergs. In the distance, waterfalls tumbled down steep forested slopes. Thin, misty veils concealed the snow-capped peaks of these impressive mountains. This is the Tracy Arms fjord.
Day 2 – I opened the blinds and gasped. We were moored in the aptly named Scenery Cove, a small, simply magical cove in Thomas Bay. I stared at the water for what seemed like ages, trying to figure out what colour it was. I decided on jade. Surrounded by steep rocky slopes with tall birch, spruce and hemlocks, the cove was clear and calm. One word keeps popping up in my mind: enchanting.
Day 3 – We left the ship for a leisurely morning stroll along Patterson Creek. We followed a narrow path through the temperate rainforest with its grand conifers, lush ferns and thick mosses. After about an hour, we reached a small clearing where we were treated to a stunning view of the river, the mountains and the Patterson glacier.
Day 4 – I stayed up late last night to capture the sunset of the longest day of the year.
A few hours later, I lugged myself out of bed – I was sleepy but I didn’t want to miss experiencing the first dawn after the summer solstice. Funny how travel makes me do things I wouldn’t normally dream of doing back home! 🙂 It was definitely worth the effort. As I stood out on the deck, a lone seal popped its head out of the calm water and kept me company while I took in the gorgeous scenes that slowly unfolded.
Day 5 – We’ve been very lucky with the weather so far but it started drizzling last night. When I woke up this morning and looked out the window, I could just about see the heavily-forested shores of Yes Bay through the rain and mist. Angel-hair-like algae hung from the branches of the trees whilst a thick bed of yellow rockweed blanketed the rocks at the edge of the bay’s olive green water. If I could rename this bay, I would call it Mystery Bay.
Day 6 – It’s still raining – this is Alaska after all! 🙂 We arrived in Misty Fjords early this morning, a spectacular national park in the southeasternmost corner of Alaska. Braving the cold heavy drizzle, I stood at the ship’s stern and stared at the majestic panorama before me. An imposing dome rose hundreds of meters almost vertically from the fjord whilst elegant waterfalls streamed down its rocky slopes. The clouds dispersed after a while, revealing even higher, snow-capped peaks. I stood transfixed; awe-struck by this incredible sight.
Day 7 – My Alaska cruise ends today. It stopped raining as we sailed into Ketchikan’s lovely harbour this morning. The town’s colourful buildings gleamed as the sun popped out from behind the clouds.
My cruise through Alaska’s Inside Passage with InnerSea Discoveries was absolutely amazing. The small size of the ship allowed us to navigate through spectacular fjords and moor in intimate coves. For me, this trip was a dream come true. A huge thank you goes to InnerSea Discoveries for making it possible.