Visiting Alaska: Glacier Cruise, Wildlife, and Wide Open Skies

December 19, 2014

It’s been almost three months since we went to Alaska. H had an opportunity to go up there for a work trip, so I bought a plane ticket and tagged along. We were there for four days, and while I worked for part of the trip, we also did some exploring around Anchorage, I went on a glacier tour, and we rented a car to drive down Highway 1 on our last day.

I knew I really wanted to see some glaciers, but after looking at a few options, I wasn’t sure I could rationalize the cost. I could take a cruise out of a couple different areas, or I could fly on a helicopter and land on a glacier, but I didn’t know what I wanted to do. They were all expensive options, and I was debating just not going and hanging out in Anchorage. H had been to Alaska before as a kid, and he decided I needed to see the glaciers, so he took matters into his own hands and booked a trip for me. And it was possibly the coolest thing I’ve ever done. After a bunch of debate, he booked me a 26 glacier cruise with Phillip Cruises. And I was a fan. I’ve already posted all over my Instagram feed, but I mean, I held a glacier in my hands!! As far as crazy and cool travel experiences go, this was in my top five.

While H was at his work conference, I would work during the day. One day, I was (luckily) working away on the main floor in the cafe (because the internet was a bit spotty in our room on the 16th floor) and I felt a bit of a rumble. I’d noticed planes flying near the hotel the day before, and at first, assumed it was a plane. Turns out, it was an earthquake! Once it started getting a little more forceful, I realized it was an earthquake, but no one else in the cafe was doing anything. So I just stayed put! Later H called me and made me leave the building for about 5 minutes. Turns out, Alaska gets thousands of earthquakes every year, but most of them are small, and in areas that are far away from civilization. This one, a 6.2, was about 100 miles from Anchorage. It was kind of entertaining, in retrospect, because my chai didn’t even spill!

One afternoon we visited the Anchorage Museum. I didn’t take many photos because it was dark, but it was so wonderful! They have a Smithsonian exhibit and I really liked the whole museum.

On the last day, we rented a car and drove down Highway 1 to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, where we got to see moose, elk, reindeer, musk ox, and more that I’m probably forgetting. We also pulled over a half dozen times to take pictures because Alaska is just that pretty, dang it.

And then we flew home, over the glaciers I’d seen just a few days prior on the cruise.

Whew. What an adventure. And what an inspiration. I wrote a little other piece, but I’m going to save that for another day. Because I’ve blathered on enough. Here are so many pictures, including one of a rainbow!

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These were shot on my Nikon FG-20 with Portra 400, Ektar 100, and Ilford XP2 400. You can find most of them for sale in my personal work gallery on my proofing site.



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Servus! I’m Emily and you’ve found my little corner of the internet, where I write about travel, intentionally living with less stuff, and living as a German-American family in Munich, Germany.  Want to know more?