Alaskan Wilderness Cruise
July 10 - 19, 2002


Wednesday, July 10 - ANCHORAGE
Fly to Anchorage arriving in the afternoon. Our hotel is ideally located to explore the city, shop, and visit the museums. Later, gather for an introduction to the family program and a welcome reception.

Two Nights, Sheraton Anchorage Hotel (Reception)
Thursday, July 11 - ANCHORAGE
After breakfast join a docent-led tour of the Anchorage Museum of History and Art and a brief tour of the city. After lunch on your own, depart by motorcoach to Flat Top State Park for a hike. Return to Anchorage in time for a private visit to the Native Heritage Center to learn about Alaska's native cultures. Meet Athabaskan elders, see craftsmen demonstrate ancient skills, hear storytellers relay their oral tradition and enjoy dinner in this festive setting.

(Breakfast, Dinner)
Friday, July 12 - DENALI STATE PARK

Travel north from Anchorage by train into the great Yukon Valley. Our deluxe dome car offers 360° sightseeing of the Alaskan Range. Hopefully, Mt. McKinley, the highest mountain on the continent, will be in view.

This afternoon a guided walking tour reveals the colorful history of Talkeetna, an old-time frontier town that inspired the television program Northern Exposure.

The Young Naturalist program continues today with a hike along the banks of the glacier-fed Talkeetna River. Arrangements can be made for a variety of other activities at additional cost including flightseeing, fishing and river rafting.

Overnight, Talkeetna Lodge (Breakfast)

The Tanana Indian word "Denali" means "The High One".
Denali is the original name for Mt. McKinley. At 20,320 feet, Mt. McKinley is North America’s highest peak. And literally and figuratively towers over Southcentral Alaska from its base in Denali National Park.

Visit the Alaska Department of Natural Resources website for complete information on the Denali State Park.

Saturday, July 13 - ANCHORAGE - JUNEAU

En route to Anchorage visit the kennels of a professional dogmusher, meet the dog team and hear stories about the famous Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race. Then, fly to Juneau and as you board the M/V Wilderness Adventurer, catch your last glimpse of civilization for six days. Sail into an untamed wilderness, where the only populations you will encounter are the amazing varieties of wildlife found along our route. This 72-passenger vessel is ideally suited for such a family learning adventure. Be on deck as we cruise past the northern tip of Admiralty Island, pausing in the picturesque bays of Mansfield Peninsula. Join the Captain's welcome reception and family-style dinner.

Six nights, Wilderness Adventurer (Breakfast, Dinner)

The M/V Wilderness Adventurer
Sunday, July 14 - 15 - GLACIER BAY NATIONAL PARK

Rise early to pick up a National Park Ranger and cruise up Glacier Bay. The Young Naturalist Program continues today with scheduled events aboard the ship. Pause off the Marble Islands to witness an extraordinary abundance of wildlife crowded on the craggy rocks. Then reach the Margerie Glacier, one of the most active tidewater glaciers in Glacier Bay. Margerie flows from one of the highest coastal mountain ranges in the world, the Fairweather Range, and calves off huge chunks of ice into the chilly waters below.

Cruise past Russell Island, which John Muir explored 100 years ago. Grand Pacific Glacier once extended to Russell Island, then retreated 15 miles. Today it is once again on the advance.

Next, we venture into Johns Hopkins Inlet if ice and harbor seal conditions permit. Sometimes all vessels are prohibited from entering Johns Hopkins to allow hundreds of seals to give birth to their pups among the protective ice of the inlet. At Geikie Inlet, past the face of Lamplugh Glacier, we spend the afternoon kayaking and hiking. After dinner, visit the Park Service Interpretive Center at Bartlett Cove to view a fascinating slide presentation on Glacier Bay, or join a ranger-led walk.

Our itinerary is flexible to allow us to take advantage of the surprises that occur every day. There are opportunities to kayak and to walk ashore in some of the many inlets along the coast.
Wednesday, July 17 - ADMIRALTY ISLAND

This morning, awake at the southern tip of Admiralty Island. Researchers estimate that there is one brown bear per every square mile on Admiralty, the highest concentration in the world. Cruise along the southern shoreline to the pristine bays and inlets of Frederick Sound. This afternoon kayak among the protected bays found along Admiralty's shore and participate in a guided nature walk through the island's dense spruce and hemlock forests.

Be on deck this evening as we cruise out of Frederick Sound into Stephens Passage, an area rich in humpback whales and bald eagles.

Thursday, July 18 - TRACY ARM FJORD
Awake this morning along the eastern shoreline of Admiralty Island at places well known for sighting grizzlies. Later this morning, cruise past Harbor Island, located at the entrance to Tracy Arm Fjord. We spend the entire day cruising Tracy Arm, one of the world's most dramatic fjords. Winding and narrow, with massive cliffs laced with cascading waterfalls, it is home to bald eagles and mountain goats. As the vessel approaches South Sawyer Glacier, watch for calving ice as it crumbles from the glacier's face and crashes to the water below. We have the afternoon to kayak in the turquoise-blue water of Tracy Arm. This evening, enjoy our Captain's farewell dinner in this spectacular setting.
Friday, July 19 - JUNEAU - HOME
This morning arrive at the dock in Juneau, disembark and transfer to the airport for the flight home.

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Date Created: November 28, 2001
Last Modified: February 12, 2001 November 29, 2001