Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Rhapsody of the Seas: In Skagway, Alaska

Passengers aboard Rhapsody of the Seas were greeted by a lovely day in Skagway, Alaska—not sunny, but mild in the 60s. While I’ve been here before, I hadn’t taken the scenic White Pass and Yukon Route train tour that explores the Yukon by motorcoach and train. Our driver spotted this bear along the way to meet the train in British Columbia, Canada and the big guy paused from snacking on dandelions long enough to pose for us. It was certainly a high point of the morning and a memorable sighting.

Once aboard the narrow gauge train (pictured below) we were treated to some of the most amazing scenery in North America. The time passed quickly as we listened to the narration and busily snapped photos. Our train car was very comfortable with large windows, complimentary drinking water, and bathroom facilities. For those who wanted better photos, a small outdoor viewing platform is located between cars and was a popular spot for shutterbugs. It was also a tad chilly with all the snow close by so I stayed inside where it was warm and cozy.

White Pass and Yukon Route
Back in Skagway we headed to a salmon bake luncheon in Liarsville—called that because it’s where journalists made their homes during the Gold Rush and most of the stories they shared were over the top exaggerations. After eating, our hosts put on a show and taught us to pan for flecks of gold in the nearby stream.

To wrap up the day, our last stop was the Red Onion Saloon where our hostess—in working girl attire—led the way upstairs to the brothel museum and shared the life and times of Skagway’s heyday as a stop for prospectors on the way to the gold fields.

It was a long and very full day of Alaska history and natural beauty.

Photos © CruiseDiva.com

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