Anchorage to Whittier – Alaska Cruise 2017

It’s been a while since I got back from the September Alaska cruise — 4,441,924 seconds, give or take the few it takes WordPress to put this up once I hit “publish” — and it’s time I continue with the documentation of the experience. The cruise leg of our trip began with our travel from the Anchorage Airport to the town of Whittier. I covered a bit of that in THIS post, but that was using the photos from the phone (the now-deceased Samsung Note II). This post has a mix of a few phone photos and photos from the P900 and the Nikon D7000.  

There is a gallery at the end of the post and a SmugMug gallery HERE. Photos in SmugMug can be viewed full-size. You can click on these photos to see a larger version but less than full-size. 

We begin with the dogs at the airport. I had a fuzzy photo in previous posts, but here are a couple taken with the D7000.

Beautiful dogs but — according to the owner — prone to biting. I did not test the claim. 

From the airport, we took a bus ride (one of them big coach buses) to Whittier. These three shots are from the phone and — obviously — taken through the windshield of the bus which — in case people don’t realize — is not of optical quality. Thankfully, it was fairly clean. 

We had previously driven this stretch of road back in 2001, in a 29-foot motorhome. That body of water is the Turnagain Arm, worth reading about. 

After taking a few photos, I decided it was worth shooting with the D7000. There are sixteen photos from that stretch of road and they are all in the gallery at the end, but I’ll only show a few here. 

Keep in mind these are shot through laminated glass. I adjusted the white balance a bit, but there’s probably a residual tint to these photos. Or, maybe not. 

We saw a couple of Beluga whales which, coincidentally, we had seen during our first trip sixteen years ago. I mean, they probably weren’t the same whales, but they were Belugas. 

We arrived at the Anton Anderson Memorial Tunnel and sat waiting for the traffic to switch. What does that mean? Well, Bob, the tunnel is the longest (2.5 miles), one-way, one lane, alternating traffic, multiuse tunnel in North America. It accommodates both vehicular and railroad traffic and the direction of travel switches every half hour. It’s worth reading about it Here, and Here

That is the entrance to the tunnel, and this six minutes video is me recording the entire trip through it with the now-defunct Samsung Note II. 

An interesting experience and much different from driving other tunnels, like, for instance, the Johnson Tunnel on I-70. Here’s that video, also shot with, you guessed it, the now-defunct Samsung Note II.

Nah, I’m kidding. It was shot with the little Panasonic P&S I used to have and gave to my sister. 

That movie is from THIS post, for them who be interested. Also, for them who be interested, a long post about driving around Colorado is HERE. That’s called self-promotion and I hear it’s all the rage these days. Personally, I think it’s annoying, but who am I to fight the tide of standard Internet practices?

Here are a couple of shots that were taken with the now-defunct Samsung Note II right after we exited the tunnel and drove into Whittier. 

OK, so, I usually show photos in chronological sequence, but something got screwed up with the times in the cameras. I think I updated one and not the other for the time change. Regardless, I aim to mix and match photos from the two Nikons I had with me, the P900 and the D7000. 

As far as I remember, I walked around with the D7000 first, and then the P900, and then back to the D7000, or something like that. The sequence might not be right, but I’ll try and keep the cameras straight. 

For instance, this is a shot of the building where most of the residents live (read the link about Whittier; it’s interesting) taken with the D7000.

Here is the same shot with the P900 . . . plus a maximum zoom shot. 

This is a shot looking toward the town (P900) . . . 

See that bright spot up the mountain and just to the right of center? It’s a waterfall. Here’s a shot with the D7000.

Here’s a similar shot with the P900.

But, I can zoom in a bit more with the P900 . . . 

. . . and, I can shoot a short video . . . 

That’s about three-quarter of a mile from the boat. It’s obviously hand-held, as is this next video.

This is zooming in on the upper right-hand portion of that same photograph. These were shot primarily because a part of having the P900 with me was to see what the camera could do. I should have taken better care of shooting the videos, but there you have it. 

These are photos from the same area. 

Those don’t look too bad, but this one shows how temperamental the P900 can be. 

Not exactly a sharp photo.

But, readers probably care not for my discussion camera performance and more about what the place looks like. 

These photos were snapped with the D7000 (like you care) . . . 

During the cruise, I took a number of panoramic shots using all three of my photographic devices. Here, in Whittier, I only used my tried and true method of doing panoramas . . . I shot and then stitched together many photos. And I mean, many photos. 

The result:

Clicking on that will get you a larger photo (twice as large) but doesn’t gain you much because it’s so wide. If you have a fast internet connection, you can click on THIS and the full-size original will open up in a new window. You can then click on various parts to zoom in and out. Be aware the photo is 33 MB and 24,100 x 3,600 pixels. It’s also in the SmugMug gallery, but not in the gallery below.

By far, I took most of the photos with the P900, forcing myself to use the cheaper and lighter camera as I walked around the outside and inside of the ship. 

I still marvel at a ship with jet engines. Quiet ones, at that. 

It was drizzling when we got there and I got to use one of the three umbrellas I had packed — you read that right; three umbrellas, one for each of Melisa’s hands and one for my hand; my other hand holds the camera. Yes, I meant to bring only one but forgot to remove the other two from the suitcase. 

Those were taken while still overcast, but soon enough the clouds began to thin out. 

Whittier is a small town. We could have walked around it a bit, but preferred getting onto the ship early so that . . . 

You don’t normally get the ship almost to yourself, not even during port days. We basically explored the ship for the first few hours onboard. Well, we also ate and drank coffee and ate and drank lattes and ate. 

I think this ship heads to Asia during the Winter months. Or, they like having Oriental art themes. For all I know, that could be the namesake of the ship, the Coral Princess herself. 

While walking outside, I snapped a mix of ship and scenery photos (more in the gallery below). 

That was a constant throughout the cruise. If a piece of land juts up, waterfalls adorn it. 

We spent a bit of time in this next section for the decoration and also to enjoy a coffee and a snack while resting on one of the lounge chairs. 

Those were shot specifically for future Deep Dreams efforts.

This next shot shows the exit from the tunnel on the Whittier side (obviously). 

Can’t see it? How about now?

No? Oh, OK . . . 

Here are a few more from outside and inside the ship (a few more still in the gallery below). 

This next one is from the balcony of our cabin. 

As is this one, taken with the D7000 . . . 

The ship left after sunset which gave me the opportunity to try a night shot . . . D7000, hand-held, no flash, ISO 1250, 17mm, 1/60 sec. shutter speed. 

Like I said, more photos in the gallery, but if you’ve read the whole post, the additional photos are mostly of the same stuff shown above. 

Suprise! . . . this is a short-ish post. Here’s the gallery (random arrangement) and then we’re done:

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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