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Journeys

The 2013 Belize Escapade, September 22-29, 2013

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This isn't a full Journeys journal, just a few photos of our week-long escapade to the Hatchet Caye Resort in Belize. This was a bit of a lark for Snookums and me, plus we had a camera failure . . . the underwater camera I use to take snorkeling pictures crapped out, so the few snorkeling pictures I did take don't really do the snorkeling quality justice.

Plus, it was HOT down there. So I didn't do a lot of wandering around with a camera, taking pictures of the resort, which turned out to be a small island about five miles out in the Caribbean off the coast of Belize. Sorry about that, but here's what we have.

The little airplane that ferried us from the Belize City international airport to the Placencia, Belize airport, the closest one to the Hatchet Caye Resort.

The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 8

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Eight

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August 9 (Friday, Day 21, Ketchikan, Alaska) -

Totems


We woke up to a beautiful sunny day and saw the very nice Ketchikan Airport that has a daily Air Alaska flight. Snookums talked to her sister, Judy, about booking a 14-day 2014 Alaskan cruise for her parents and after several phone calls (cell phones are good!), was able to immediately see the Future Cruise Consultant in order to book three cabins.

The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 7

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Seven

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August 4 (Sunday, Day 16, Train to Seward and the ms Statendam) -





All Aboard Again


Our luggage had to be out at 8 AM which allowed us to sleep in later than usual. We are all looking forward to getting on the ship and being able to sleep in tomorrow! We enjoyed breakfast at Snow City Café which was voted Anchorage’s best breakfast for the last umpteen years. Snookums, Laura and John really enjoyed their breakfasts but Filbert’s salmon cakes weren’t spiced at all and his over medium eggs were sunny side up. And, the first pitcher of cream he was given for his coffee curdled it since it was soured! The rest of us, though, enjoyed it and everyone except John ordered a “to go” lunch to eat on the train.

The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 6

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Six

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August 2 (Friday, Day 14, Denali National Park, Alaska) -

Helicopter


Once again we had to wake up early and today we woke up at 5:45 AM in order to be in the lobby (after taking the shuttle) by 7 PM. Era Flightseeing was there to pick us up for our heli-hiking trip. We weighed in at the helicopter office and received our safety briefing. One other couple was on the tour with us along with Jeff, the naturalist/hiking guide. We piled in the helicopter and Snookums was the co-pilot once again. This time she had plenty of room but it was only a short 15-minute flight to the tundra.

The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 5

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Five

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August 1 (Thursday, Day 13, Denali National Park, Alaska)

Today was a big day since we got to take the official Denali National Park Tundra Wilderness Tour. Unfortunately, Snookums didn’t write the day’s journal entry until a year after the fact! She doesn’t know how she missed writing about today, but she did.

(So, for the record, it's 3/7 Snookums' fault that this travelogue is posted 28 months after the fact. - Filbert)

Denali in the distance


The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 4

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Four

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July 29 (Monday, Day 10, Motor Coach to Fairbanks, Alaska) -

Our luggage had to be out at 6 AM and the bus left at 7 AM making it another early morning. For breakfast Filbert ate some of his high protein bars while Snookums went across the street to pick up her pre-ordered breakfast box from Belinda’s. The bus got on the ferry to cross the Yukon River and a little before 9 AM we were at the border. The border crossing opened at 9 and our driver wanted to be there when it opened.

The Border


The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 3

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Three

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July 27 (Saturday, Day 8, Motor Coach to Dawson City, Canada) -

The Bus


Our luggage had to be outside our hotel room door by 6:30 and the bus departed at 7:45. We saw a fox within the first hour of the trip and a moose, too. For the next 7 hours, though, we only saw around 10 houses and 20 RVs and cars. The bus stopped every two hours and our first stop was at Braeburn’s. This little store, with Cinnamon Roll Airstrip across the road, sold $10 cinnamon rolls the size of a paper plate and 4 inches tall. Snookums was in line to buy one but when she saw it was $10, decided not to. Our lunch stop was at Minto which consisted of a dining hall, a few cabins and a bathroom with showers and laundry facilities. Our bus driver and tour guide served us chili and soup and there was also tossed salad and coleslaw and Nanaimo bars for dessert. Two First Nations people were seen in the kitchen, but they stayed mostly behind the scenes.

The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 2

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part Two

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July 24 (Wednesday, Day 5, Vancouver, Canada) -

Stanley Park Geese


After last night’s late night, we woke up and made it to the Regency Club before breakfast stopped being served. We were just hanging out on the balcony when John and Laura showed up around 10:35. We watched a film being filmed on the top of a building down the street and then decided to walk to Stanley Park together. After they ate a quick breakfast at Tim Horton’s, we met in the lobby at 11:15 and walked to Stanley Park in order to walk along the seawall. We took a path through the park to get to the seawall and saw a raccoon. We also saw ducks, geese, swans, birds and squirrels. We saw low tide at 1:34 PM and found out that the water temperature was 67º. There were lots of people enjoying the nice beaches, the park, the walking/biking paths and the swimming pool. It looked more like a weekend than a Wednesday afternoon, but it must be the laid back West Coast culture. It was a beautiful day.

The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour

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The 2013 Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam, July 20-August 11, 2013

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

The Itinerary

This is the table of contents for the online version of our trip journal. Here are the chapters and their publishing dates:

December 27, 2015: Part One - To Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

December 28, 2015: Part Two - Vancouver to Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Canada.

December 30, 2015: Part Three - To Dawson City, Yukon Territory, Canada.

December 31, 2015: Part Four - To Denali National Park, Alaska.

January 1, 2016: Part Five - At Denali National Park, Alaska.

January 2, 2016: Part Six - Denali National Park, Alaska and the train to Anchorage, Alaska.

January 3, 2016: Part Seven - The train to Seward, Alaska, and on the cruise.

January 4, 2016: Part Eight - Cruising to Seattle.

The 2013 Alaska HAL CruiseTour, Part 1

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The 19-Day Holland America Line Alaska CruiseTour, Holland America ms Statendam

Text and pictures by Snookums, webification by Filbert

Part One

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July 20 (Saturday, Day 1, Fly to Vancouver, Canada) -

Our first travel day was very uneventful. We left our house at 2:25 PM and everything was smooth sailing. We had an almost two hour (scheduled) layover in Seattle which gave us plenty of time for a sit-down dinner.

Mount Rainier