Thursday, 25 June 2015


Skagway is located in the northernmost point on the Inside Passage. Directly behind the town are majestic peaks of the Coast Mountains which made for a spectacular entry into the port. The area around present day Skagway was once inhabited by Tlinigit Indians. "Skagua" was the Tlingit name and means "the place where the north wind blows".

Today, Skagway still retains the feel of those Gold Rush days. The historic downtown has largely been restored to its roots, complete with false-fronted buildings and wooden sidewalks. The population of Skagway is comprised of approximately 862 local residents. Many of them move out during the winter as the city primarily relies on tourism which run only during the summer months.

Our ship docked right at the end of the town's Main Street. Our guide for the day, Michelle of Trail of 98 tours, was ready and waiting for us at 715am! She was knowledgeable, friendly, well-prepared and went the extra mile for our family. She made our day educational as well as enjoyable.

Ready for our first port of call!

Our private tour van
We started with a quick tour of the town. All 7 blocks took less than 5 minutes...From there we commenced our scenic journey towards the Yukon, Canada, driving parallel to the White Pass and Yukon Route Railroad. As conditions at the actual US/Canadian border were extremely harsh in the winter, both sides made agreements to have their customs buildings further in from the actual border. Along the way, Michelle pointed out various flowers and animals. We spotted arctic squirrels, ptarmigans (the national bird of Alaska) and mountain goats! It wasn't long before we arrived at the dog musher camp. There was a new litter of puppies which the children loved cuddling. This was soon followed by an exhilarating "sled ride" pulled by powerful huskies.

The huge machine used to clear snow from the train tracks

Spot the railroad on the other side of the river

Err....that looks pretty scary!

Yeah...waterfalls just by the side of the road...

Michelle was awesome! She was prepared with scopes and stopped whenever she spotted animals so the children could look too. She also had water and snacks for the group.

Fireweed. They bloom from bottom up. It is said that once the flowers at the top bloom then the season will end.

Bright and colourful Lupin

Ptarmigan and her baby! It is the national bird of Alaska

And we're back to Canada!

Thelma and Louise and the dog musher camp

The gorgeous husky puppies

They only just opened their days a few days ago

Adult huskies ready to go!

And they're off!

The passengers!

Our end destination was Emerald Lake. The photo explains it all! We stopped by the town of Carcross on the way home. Unfortunately the bistro which served caribou burger was closed! With more photo opportunities along the way home, we passed through US customs back into Alaska and moved onto shopping! A while ago, I lost my engagement and wedding bands. With other things that were more "important", we never got around to replacing it until today! My mother had kindly in the meantime given me her beautiful diamond ring. It was unfortunately too big. We used the diamond from the ring for a new setting, and got 2 matching bands along with it. I finally had my long awaited wedding band and eternity band! My mother's old ring received a sparkling new tanzanite gemstone and was resized. All in all, a pretty good jewelry day for a girl! Best of all, Disney's personal shopper picked up the jewelry and brought it back onto ship for us, leaving us to be able to enjoy the rest of Skagway.

We returned to the ship exhausted with just energy to watch Pixar's new release Inside Out. The children absolutely loved it, I thought it was good. Malcolm thought it was enjoyable but not as good as other pixar movies. You be your own judge!

Emerald Lake, the colour is from the limestone and calcium sediments

The wonderful Michelle thought the children were so well behaved that she got them a soft toy each of Alaskan animals!

The tiny town of Carcross, we arrived and left well before the train would arrive with the busloads of passengers...

We loved the vibrant summer flowers at each town we visited

Lara trying out a sled dog. Sausage surrounded by sourdough and cheese. Mmmm....

Short stroll to the shore of Bennett Lake before hopping back onto the bus

A very tired child!

Bove Island

A quick stop... skip stones!

There's the train!

Another stop to build our own "inukshuks"

Daddy's help needed with some of the bigger stones


Back to Alaska!

The town of Skagway

Oh look...oh its a just a ship down the road

The mountainous scenery all around never gets tiring!

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