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Old 06-21-2011, 10:21 AM   #286
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Thanks. I will be sure to pack snacks and drinks.
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Old 06-22-2011, 06:54 PM   #287
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Surely they have some kind of sandwich that I can place in a baggy to take with us. At least I hope so. My daughter is a grazer. She likes to eat many small meals a day.
We just got back from the June 14 sailing. They did not have Uncrustables.... But they did make PB&J crustless sandwiches and served them with potato chips... So if you pack some ziploc baggies, you should be good to go. We ordered them the night before, bagged them up and put them in the fridge. Worked fine for snacks on our Skagway day... which was an 8 hour private bus tour. We also took along chocolate chip cookies we ordered from room service. We also ordered some boxes of fruit loops cereal and the kids ate those (dry) for a snack. You can also take some whole apples, oranges and bananas from Goofy's if you are not going over the Canadian border...
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Old 06-22-2011, 09:36 PM   #288
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since you just got back can you tell us about pirate night? I heard it was changed.
DD doesn't want to bring her pirate outfit if no one is dressed up....
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Old 06-22-2011, 09:46 PM   #289
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since you just got back can you tell us about pirate night? I heard it was changed.
DD doesn't want to bring her pirate outfit if no one is dressed up....
Sure. As far as pictures and dinner, I felt like it was pretty similar to the Mexican Riviera cruise we did in 2008. Pirate Mickey and Minnie were there. Captain Jack and Captain Hook were there, etc. We received pirate bandanas at dinner. Some people were not dressed up and some people were TOTALLY dressed up.. so there was a range. The kids in our group wore eye patches and head gear and had pirate tshirts and swords, and we felt like we fit right in. If DD has a pirate outfit, I would say bring it and enjoy it! There were definitely a fair number of people dressed up. They moved the deck party indoors for our cruise because it was cold and rainy. I was dead tired and skipped it this time, but DH took the kids and they had fun... danced and sang and enjoyed themselves. We didn't go to the buffet.... But the people we were sailing with went and they said it was fine... nothing special... No great food or anything, but fine. Overall, we enjoyed the night a lot!
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Old 06-22-2011, 09:50 PM   #290
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Sure. As far as pictures and dinner, I felt like it was pretty similar to the Mexican Riviera cruise we did in 2008. Pirate Mickey and Minnie were there. Captain Jack and Captain Hook were there, etc. We received pirate bandanas at dinner. Some people were not dressed up and some people were TOTALLY dressed up.. so there was a range. The kids in our group wore eye patches and head gear and had pirate tshirts and swords, and we felt like we fit right in. If DD has a pirate outfit, I would say bring it and enjoy it! There were definitely a fair number of people dressed up. They moved the deck party indoors for our cruise because it was cold and rainy. I was dead tired and skipped it this time, but DH took the kids and they had fun... danced and sang and enjoyed themselves. We didn't go to the buffet.... But the people we were sailing with went and they said it was fine... nothing special... No great food or anything, but fine. Overall, we enjoyed the night a lot!
Thanks....always good to know. Hate to have her show up and the only one ready to party!!!
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Old 06-24-2011, 07:41 PM   #291
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Subbing. Wow. Thanks for all the advice !
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Old 06-25-2011, 12:11 PM   #292
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Excursions...

We loved all our excursions! Would recommend them all!

Skagway: Takshanuk Mountain Trail by 4x4: Took a bus for a whooping 3 minutes to a ferry. Took a beautiful ferry ride from Skagway to Haines (40 minutes, narrated and bathrooms on board; saw a whale and eagles and waterfalls on the way). Took a bus ride from the dock (about 15 minutes) to the base of Takshanuk Mountain (saw more eagles on the way)! Had a briefing on the 4x4, were put into 3 groups (we were in the lead group) of about 4 "mules" (Kawasaki 4x4 vehicles). Hubby drove, I sat next to him, our two boys (ages 7 and 9) sat in the seats behind us- slightly elevated. Very comfortable vehicle, easy to drive, open to the air, have seatbelts. We had sooo much fun! Drove to the Lodge, took a bathroom break and were served warm cookies, hot chocolate, apple cider, water or lemonade. Back on the mules, headed up the mountain. The guide stopped us at a few places for beautiful pictures. The top is a gorgeous view. Headed back down, again stopping at the Lodge. Served fresh Halibut Fish Fry (DEEEEE-LISH-OUS), salad, fruit, beans, chicken. Good meal. Drove back down, bus back to Haines dock (we were a few minutes early so our driver drove thru town and gave us some history). Ferry back to Skagway and we walked into town. Shopping was cute. Kids got a few nice stuffed animals and we got some t-shirts and a nice Alaska Recipe Book. Walked back to the ship. Highly recommend this excursion.

Juneau:: Taku Lodge Flight and Feast: Our favorite excursion. Was worried about the price but in the end, it was all worth it. Took a short 3 minute bus ride to float plane dock station. Put into groups by family and weight. Boarded a float plane. Everyone got a seat by a window and my husband got to sit up front with the pilot (he says to only have the tallest person in your party sit with the pilot as a shorter person may have difficulty seeing over the flight instruments). It was a breathtaking 30 minute flight over ocean, land, and 5 glaciers. You wear headsets and listen to narration along the way. I am afraid of heights AND prone to motion sickness and didn't have a problem with either. Land in front of the Lodge. This Lodge was beautiful. You are literally a football field away from a glacier. It is beautiful and amazing. The Lodge is small but perfect (nice, clean, rustic, quaint). There is a small gift shop, restrooms, a barn and sleeping quarters for the small staff that lives at the Lodge. You can immediately smell the delicious salmon they are grilling outside over a fire. There is complimentary lemonade, water or hot Russian Tea (try it- it is delicious)! You can also purchase wine or beer. Hubby and I had an Alaskan Beer that he fell in love with. Must call our local liquor store to see if they carry or can order it. Anyway, the lunch was absolutely amazing. The fresh grilled salmon was the best I have ever had. Sides included spicy baked beans, apple compote, coleslaw, and herb buscuits. Dessert was homemade ginger cookies. Each and every bite of food I put into my mouth was amazing. I went to the gift shop and bought a cookbook with their recipes inside. Can't wait to see if I can re-create some of that amazing meal. During lunch, a bear came out of the woods and "cleaned" the grill off. We were allowed outside but the staff made sure we kept a safe distance. Got some great pictures. During lunch, one of the staff members told us some history of the Lodge. It was neat. After lunch, the bear climbed up into a tree! Again, great photos and staff made sure we were safe. Took a guided nature walk, played some horseshoes, got some great photos. At the end, we saw a different bear in the woods watching us! Took another float plane back to Juneau. This excursion was amazing and I would do it again in a heartbeat. We all thought it was top-notch!

Ketchikan: Canoe and Rainforest Adventure: Took a bus ride about 35 minutes to a beautiful, remote lake. Put into three groups of about 16 people per group. Given life vests and rain poncho. Into canoes with a guide. Our group canoed out into the lake and around an island. Docked at a different island. Were give smoked salmon, fish crackers, rolls and jam, hot chocolate and clam chowder. Took a guided 30 minute nature walk through the rainforest. This was my favorite part. The plants and trees are beyond description. Beautiful and mystic. Saw an enormous banana slug! Kids were given time to roast marshmallows over the fire. Back to the canoe and canoed back to the original dock. Great adventure and perfect amount of canoe time- not too much, not too short. Great, knowledgable guides. We had beautiful weather- no rain which, apparently, is unheard of in Ketchikan!

As I said before, I give all our excursions high, high ratings. We would do the Juneau one again, but not the others (not because they were at all bad, just b/c we'd like to try something different next time).
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Old 06-25-2011, 12:41 PM   #293
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Just did the 6/14 sailing...what an amazing trip!

Skagway: Did the Chillkoot Horsback ride. It was only OK. You go at a very, very slow pace, so after the first 20 minutes I was bored and almost fell asleep. You go on a long trail in the woods, so not much to see, until the 10 minute photo stop. Had the rest of the afternoon to walk around Skagway, which was nice.

Juneau: Did the Exclusive Whale Encounter and Mendenhall Glacier. About 25 people on the boat. It was great, saw plenty of whales, even a mama and calf. Just make sure to set your camera to take multiple pictures before you head out on the boat...my camera was acting up, but I still got great shots.

Had about an hour of free time at the glacier which was beautiful. Just enough time to explore, and get pictures. We even had enough time walk around Juneau for lunch and shopping after the excursion.

Ketchikan:Explored on our own, and were happy to do so...the little shops and Creek Street were adorable.
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Old 06-25-2011, 07:29 PM   #294
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We were on the May 31st cruise - Our traveling party consisted of DH, DD (8), DS(4) and my brother who is an amputee ~ below are my reviews (we booked only our Juneau excursions through Disney):

DD and I did the "Disney Exclusive Dog Musher for a Day". This, by far, was the excursion of a lifetime. We met with the excursion folks (after Disney passed us on to the proper people) and filled out the proper paperwork which consisted of release forms and age/weight forms (to balance out the helicopter ride). There were only 10 of us on the trip ~ I later learned that we are the ONLY excursion (i.e. Disney) that does this type of trip and only 10 folks MAX per day (all through Disney).

After a quick trip via small bus/transport to the helicopter location (ERA) we were given a brief overview on helicopter safety. We were also outfitted with "glacier boots". Within 30 minutes of arriving at the helicopter location we were off in the helicopter. There were 5 of us (all women) in the helicopter. It was a 15-20 minute flight with beautiful views. I was in the back seat with a window view with my daughter next to me (they change the seating on the way back to give everyone a chance to have a window seat, etc.).

There were 4 helicopters that took off and landing within seconds from each other (that was a pretty cool thing to see as well). Two of the helicopters had folks from Disney that were doing the Disney Musher for a Day and the other two helicopters had folks that were doing the "regular" dog sledding.

After getting to the glacier (I believe it was the Norris glacier) the groups were split up (i.e. Disney Musher, Regular Dog sledding) and given our overviews as they were different itineraries. Within the 10 folks from Disney we were split into 3 different groups - generally along traveling party/family. DD and I had Nancy as our Sled guide. After meeting Nancy and her removing a dog from the harness (since it was just two of us on the sled with Nancy she stated we didn't need that many dogs).

We took off soon after meeting Nancy on our first mushing portion. We only made a stop or two but we could talk the entire time while mushing (she did the driving on the first part while we chatted). The second time we stopped for a minute or so she asked my daughter if she wanted to get up and stand on the sled with her and help mush. My daughter jumped at the chance. After about a 25 minute mush we ended up away from the camp at a few seperate tents. We got off the sled and had lunch with our dog mushers (and it was a very good lunch). We got about 30 minutes to eat and tak more with the dog mushers. This is where I found out they were as excited as us to do the Disney exclusive excursion as they had never offered this type before (i.e. mushing for the time frame we did and lunch on the glacier with us "regular" folks).

After lunch, we helped harness our sled team for the final leg of mushing. Both my daughter and I helped put the harnesses on as well as the booties they were to protect their feet. My daughter jumped at the chance to once again stand with Nancy to do the mushing. Half-way through the second portion of the mushing we stopped and Nancy offered I a chance to stand on the second sled (they have a second smaller sled for folks to stand and "drive" the team). So for the last 1/2 of our mushing on the way back to camp both my DD and I were able to stand on the sleds with Nancy (we also helped brake when needed, etc.).

After saying goodbye to your musher and dogs (throughout the entire experience we got to learn more about the dogs and my daughter got to pet them for as long as she wanted). Another worker at the camp comes over and gives you a quick tour of the camp and provides information about the day-to-day operations. 5 minutes before the helicopters come back they let everyone know to make their way back to the landing area to be taken back.

After loading up in the helicopter and another 15-20 minute ride back to the helicopter location we removed our gear and hoped onboard the vehicle to get back to the boat.

I just wanted to recap this portion of all the excursions as we truly did love it. It really was a once in a lifetime experience.


If anyone has any questions let me know.
I'm so glad to hear about the Disney Dog Musher experience. We have this booked and my DH was still hesitant because of the price. He was wanting me to try to book independently, especially since my DS who is 11 is considered an adult with DCL excursions. After reading you review I think I will keep ours thru DCL. I'm thinking my 3 boys will love it. One question-how were you dressed? Being from Florida we get cold so easily. I guess if they only take 10 we make up half the group.

Thanks
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Old 06-25-2011, 09:26 PM   #295
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Originally Posted by NurseNash View Post
We loved all our excursions! Would recommend them all!

Skagway: Takshanuk Mountain Trail by 4x4: Took a bus for a whooping 3 minutes to a ferry. Took a beautiful ferry ride from Skagway to Haines (40 minutes, narrated and bathrooms on board; saw a whale and eagles and waterfalls on the way). Took a bus ride from the dock (about 15 minutes) to the base of Takshanuk Mountain (saw more eagles on the way)! Had a briefing on the 4x4, were put into 3 groups (we were in the lead group) of about 4 "mules" (Kawasaki 4x4 vehicles). Hubby drove, I sat next to him, our two boys (ages 7 and 9) sat in the seats behind us- slightly elevated. Very comfortable vehicle, easy to drive, open to the air, have seatbelts. We had sooo much fun! Drove to the Lodge, took a bathroom break and were served warm cookies, hot chocolate, apple cider, water or lemonade. Back on the mules, headed up the mountain. The guide stopped us at a few places for beautiful pictures. The top is a gorgeous view. Headed back down, again stopping at the Lodge. Served fresh Halibut Fish Fry (DEEEEE-LISH-OUS), salad, fruit, beans, chicken. Good meal. Drove back down, bus back to Haines dock (we were a few minutes early so our driver drove thru town and gave us some history). Ferry back to Skagway and we walked into town. Shopping was cute. Kids got a few nice stuffed animals and we got some t-shirts and a nice Alaska Recipe Book. Walked back to the ship. Highly recommend this excursion.

As I said before, I give all our excursions high, high ratings. We would do the Juneau one again, but not the others (not because they were at all bad, just b/c we'd like to try something different next time).
Thank you so much for this review! We are on the July 19th cruise and have this excursion booked, and yours is the first review of it I've come across. It sounds like fun and I can't wait until we sail!
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Old 06-26-2011, 12:44 AM   #296
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we are looking for some fishing excursions Has anyone been on them?
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Old 06-26-2011, 08:59 AM   #297
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NurseNash View Post
Ketchikan: Canoe and Rainforest Adventure: Took a bus ride about 35 minutes to a beautiful, remote lake. Put into three groups of about 16 people per group. Given life vests and rain poncho. Into canoes with a guide. Our group canoed out into the lake and around an island. Docked at a different island. Were give smoked salmon, fish crackers, rolls and jam, hot chocolate and clam chowder. Took a guided 30 minute nature walk through the rainforest. This was my favorite part. The plants and trees are beyond description. Beautiful and mystic. Saw an enormous banana slug! Kids were given time to roast marshmallows over the fire. Back to the canoe and canoed back to the original dock. Great adventure and perfect amount of canoe time- not too much, not too short. Great, knowledgable guides. We had beautiful weather- no rain which, apparently, is unheard of in Ketchikan!
Thanks for the review! We have the Rainforest Island Adventure excursion reserved which sounds very similar other than we raft to the island before the hike and snack. Since we'll have a 6 yr old, thought this was a safer bet than the canoe. Did your kids enjoy the hike or were they bored look t plants and trees?
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Old 06-26-2011, 10:31 AM   #298
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we are looking for some fishing excursions Has anyone been on them?
Me too. Specifically Halibut fishing. We chartered a boat for our July trip.
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Old 06-26-2011, 10:35 AM   #299
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We loved all our excursions! Would recommend them all!



As I said before, I give all our excursions high, high ratings. We would do the Juneau one again, but not the others (not because they were at all bad, just b/c we'd like to try something different next time).
[QUOTE=DisneyCruisin;41610051]Just did the 6/14 sailing...what an amazing trip!


Juneau: Did the Exclusive Whale Encounter and Mendenhall Glacier. About 25 people on the boat. It was great, saw plenty of whales, even a mama and calf. Just make sure to set your camera to take multiple pictures before you head out on the boat...my camera was acting up, but I still got great shots.


THANK YOU BOTH FOR TAKING THE TIME TO REVIEW YOUR TOURS. GREAT DETAIL AND INFO. THANKS!!!
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Old 06-26-2011, 10:47 AM   #300
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[QUOTE=NurseNash;41609844]We loved all our excursions! Would recommend them all!

Juneau:: Taku Lodge Flight and Feast: Our favorite excursion. Was worried about the price but in the end, it was all worth it. Took a short 3 minute bus ride to float plane dock station. Put into groups by family and weight. Boarded a float plane. Everyone got a seat by a window and my husband got to sit up front with the pilot (he says to only have the tallest person in your party sit with the pilot as a shorter person may have difficulty seeing over the flight instruments). It was a breathtaking 30 minute flight over ocean, land, and 5 glaciers. You wear headsets and listen to narration along the way. I am afraid of heights AND prone to motion sickness and didn't have a problem with either. Land in front of the Lodge. This Lodge was beautiful. You are literally a football field away from a glacier. It is beautiful and amazing. The Lodge is small but perfect (nice, clean, rustic, quaint). There is a small gift shop, restrooms, a barn and sleeping quarters for the small staff that lives at the Lodge. You can immediately smell the delicious salmon they are grilling outside over a fire. There is complimentary lemonade, water or hot Russian Tea (try it- it is delicious)! You can also purchase wine or beer. Hubby and I had an Alaskan Beer that he fell in love with. Must call our local liquor store to see if they carry or can order it. Anyway, the lunch was absolutely amazing. The fresh grilled salmon was the best I have ever had. Sides included spicy baked beans, apple compote, coleslaw, and herb buscuits. Dessert was homemade ginger cookies. Each and every bite of food I put into my mouth was amazing. I went to the gift shop and bought a cookbook with their recipes inside. Can't wait to see if I can re-create some of that amazing meal. During lunch, a bear came out of the woods and "cleaned" the grill off. We were allowed outside but the staff made sure we kept a safe distance. Got some great pictures. During lunch, one of the staff members told us some history of the Lodge. It was neat. After lunch, the bear climbed up into a tree! Again, great photos and staff made sure we were safe. Took a guided nature walk, played some horseshoes, got some great photos. At the end, we saw a different bear in the woods watching us! Took another float plane back to Juneau. This excursion was amazing and I would do it again in a heartbeat. We all thought it was top-notch!
[QUOTE]

I totally agree! It sounds like we were on the same fabulous excursion. This excursion was worth the entire cost of the cruise for us. DH got to ride in the cockpit, as well, and went around all day with a huge grin of happiness. We have never had salmon as wonderful, and the staff at the lodge were so warm and welcoming. DD loved seeing the bears and playing with the lodge dogs. You could tell the floatplane pilots love what they do, and they made it very stress-free. I would recommend this excursion wholeheartedly.
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