Saturday, May 22, 2010

Coach and Train to Anchorage (Whittier Cruise Terminal)

A nice place to while away the morning!

Beautiful fireplace in the Lodge. Can you find the sled dogs?

Boarded the coach to the Talkeetna depot around 11 a.m. It was a one hour ride to the "depot". This is a thing that Princess definitely needs to work on - this transfer spot is out in the middle of nowhere - three porta-johns and only a few logs to sit on, and quite a long wait! Here I am enjoying my log...

It took this many buses to transfer all of the tourists coming and going. The facilities were not adequate to the task, in my opinion. But it certainly did not spoil the day! It was just a minor glitch.

Ze train! Ze train! The train rides are so much more enjoyable than the buses. The scenery along the route was as spectacular as it gets!

PICTURES FROM THE TRAIN RIDE (Talkeetna to Whittier)


Sat 5/22/10
Coffee shop & internet. Finally figure out that if you keep your cup, the refills are free.
We hang out ‘til 11, bus to Talkeetna, sit in front. B&J get crying baby in back. One hour ride, last view of McKinley. Clear at top in AM, all clear on drive.
Station – the pits. Two pit toilets, log seating. 30+ min wait. Board train, car 1. It turns out that car 1 is in the front when north bound, at rear when south bound.
Crying baby in car 6.
Car 1 develops hot box, might have to drop from train. Yard workers come on board in Anchorage. If car dropped we would be reassigned to other cars but they would find us to give us our shipboard information. Trains stops near siding. View effects of 1964 quake.
Medical emergency! Our tour guide (Tammy) is MedTec. Tammy has to go forward. Train proceeds slowly south. When she returns she claims credit for keeping car 1 attached.
Good views of tide going out from Turnagain Arm and receding glaciers on the right, avalanches and waterfalls on left. Train slow, arrive nearly one hour late but still in our car.
Disembark at Whittier, good hike to check in through security. Sniders way ahead. Bill claims he saw an orca.
Find room, meet room steward (Maria Luisa)
Dinner in assigned dining room - Sniders are in the other one. Share table w/ Rod & Nancy – VT. & Charles & Cathy (Paula Deen) – Ark. Excellent company!!!
Back in room @ 11:30ish, unpack, bed just after 12. Long day!!

We boarded the Coral Princess, found our stateroom, went to the lifeboat drill in the Universe Lounge, and had a very late dinner. Exciting day!

The view from our balcony. It stayed light until 11 p.m.

Our stateroom (E 714 - E is for Emerald Deck 8.