Alaska Cruise

Monday, June 13, 2022

There's an old saying...give 'em an inch and they'll take a mile.

Prime example are RHS'69 alumni.

Example - someone yells "cruise!" and they're packing their bags.

This time it's Alaska. As Reunion Committee chair Vincent Yim says, at least it's the warm time of the year.

But then, there's the mosquitoes...

This is a rolling blog and is updated every day. Check back often for updates.

Sitka, Alaska is famous for the indigenous peoples of the area. Tlingit, or “People of the Tids”, have lived on the Pacific Northwest Coast of North America going as far back as 11,000 years.

Tlingit have a rich culture with a heavy emphasis placed on family, kinship, and spirituality. Generosity and proper behavior are encouraged and highly valued.

In the mid-1700s Russian explorers first landed in the region and started taking the vast wealth of natural resources the land provided. The culture class between the Russians and Tlingit led to open warfare between both sides.

The United States purchased Alaska from Russia in 1867. The cost... $7.2 million, 2 cents per acre.

Officially, we don't know if this group is coming or going from the ship in Sitka.

Unofficially, they are going.

Deduction...these are the power shoppers who must never be left without an adult chaperone. They are not carrying any packages.

They're headed for town.

Sitka has a population of about 8,500. You can imagine how much it swells when one of those big cruise ships comes in.

So you can also imagine a lot of Sitka businesses depend on those passengers.

Look at some of the things they can buy. Probably not too practical in parts of the U.S. where it's over 110 degrees right now. Who cares? You're looking marvelous.

Check the blowup of the price tag for this little cutie - $4,600.

That would keep anyone warm.


Here's some 69ers walking down the street in Sitka, just minding their business, checking the sights.

And here in front of them is a musubi tent.

Alaskan Musubi! King Salmon or mushroom musubi!

$8 each.

No spam musubi but traveling is supposed to open folks up to new things.

Note that they did.

You have to understand - when a ship with 3-4 thousand passengers pulls in and everyone wants to go to town, it gets crowded.

These are folks waiting for the town shuttle. But once your there there's lots of room to roam.

And when it's all over there's the empty walk back to the ship.

Dinner awaits.

A leisurely walk through the shops of town and Dayle Ho'opai and her group bumped into a friendly bear who gives free head massages.

Check her head (a bit hard to see...)

While in Sitka as others shopped, Dana Kobashigawa and a small group Went to The Fortress of the Bears.

These are bears that were recused as cubs.  They are raised here but will never be released in the wilderness as they don’t have the skills to survive.

Bear cub need to have their mothers for the first couple of years to survive and learn the skills to hunt and survive in the wild.

If the mother bear is killed through human contact (shot, hit by a car, etc.) the forestry people go out to find the cub to euthanize them so they won’t suffer by starving to death.

Now that this bear rescue place is operating they raise the cubs. As they are unable to teach them the skills needed to survive like their mom would have, they will spend their lives in the Fortress of the Bears.

From bears to birds...

Afterwards the folks dropped by the The Alaska Raptor Center.

Unlike the Fortress of the Bears, its mission is to rehabilitate and release injured bald eagles and other birds of prey back into the wild.

They even have a Bald eagle flight training school for the injured birds. Dana is testing the flight equipment.

There are so many bald eagles flying around in Sitka they are nicknamed the pigeons of the sky.

Orcas and otters.

They're everywhere.

Bears begging for food. Just like us.