Despite the fact we are all a bit tired with the late night upon night catching up on us, today was a sensory extravaganza. You really understand a place when you get to feel it. Today was one such day.
We docked at the next Alaskan town of Skagway. The took the ships ‘top rated tour’ the scenic White Pass Yukon Route train.
The historic rail track makes its way up to White Pass Summit which is on the Alaskan/Canada BC boarder. The part we took was a result of the 1898 gold rush. In only five months in 1898 the mint in Seattle and San Francisco received ten million dollars worth of Klondike Gold. By 1900, another 38 million dollars had been recorded. The result of the largest gold rush the world has ever seen. Now we are talking HARSH conditions here. Glaciers, snow, freezing, rocky terrain and using mules to carry their mining stores and gear from the coast right up the rocky unforgiving mountains. The Canadian Government required that any man making this journey would only be issued a permit to mine if they took a years worth of food and supplies to prevent remote famine and certain death. It is any typical hard working pioneer story.
We did it in complete luxury compared to those folk. The 3 hour return train ride was scenic and yes one that we felt. We could stand outside on the plank in between carriages for an uninterrupted view. As we climbed in altitude the temperature dropped to icy.
Skagway is a fully restored mining town. They have done a top job at making them all look classy and old world.
Tonight we are motoring towards Hubbard Glacier. There are no more stops now until Anchorage. We feel like we have some of the best scenery just around the corner as out our window right now we are looking at snowcapped mountains and Glaciers making their way to the sea.
We are all dressed up and heading out for another formal dinner. Tonight is dress up five star al la carte seafood. The kids are enjoying reading the menu and ordering themselves the fancy three course meal. The waiters are amazing. So polite and attentive. They remember the kids names, grind on pepper, do magic tricks and offer to cut their meals! The kids think its funny and cool. They are all either Indian or Indonesian. Last night all of the waitstaff paraded and sun a song in Italian. Tonight all of the chefs were on parade and listed out how much food we had all consumed in 7 days. The list included 100,000 eggs.