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10 June – Vixen Inlet

zero day

rain 51 °F

A dreary, blustery day even by Alaska standards. Our morning activity is cruising through Misty Fjords National Monument. Most of us sat in the lounge (in the forward part of the ship with a glass wall to see ahead). We all enjoyed the many waterfalls and cliff faces we passed. We went into the fjord for about 90 minutes, then turned around and came back out.

Our afternoon anchorage was Vixen Inlet and skiff rides and kayaking were planned. The seas and weather were too rough for kayaking but they did offer the skiff excursion. It was cold, very rainy, and visibility was poor, so we opted to have a “zero day” and stayed on the ship. The small group of intrepid explorers that braved the skiff excursion were treated to encounters with large numbers of seals and sea otters.

We were given tours of the galley and engine room. The galley was about 10’x20’ and prepared 3 meals each day for 100+ people. Very compact and efficient. Rather than take up space with steam tables to keep the food warm until it was served, they heated bricks in the oven and laid them on the stainless steel prep counters and put the food on the hot bricks. The engine room was very cramped and noisy. In one small compartment there were two Caterpillar 5-cylinder diesel engines for propulsion, two smaller 4-cylinder Caterpillar diesels for electrical power, one 2-cylinder diesel to power hydraulics, a reverse osmosis water filtration system and all the controls and instruments to monitor the machinery. Each of the main diesel engines has a 110 gallon oil supply.

Here's a floor plan of the ship.
the lounge (2nd deck, bow)
dining room,

Much to Dan’s chagrin, we discovered that pollen season in Alaska is every bit as intense as it is in Atlanta, and we were there at its peak. The yellow lines in the water are made up of pine pollen, just like back home.

Here is a photo of the map posted outside the dining room of our route and stop each day (except day 7).

Posted by dasafish 01:23 Archived in USA Tagged pollen misty_fjords

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