Haines – Alaska Cruise 2017 – Part 2

Note: this is a long post. If you just want the photos, go to the bottom and check out the gallery sans the witty, incisive, profound, and irreverent banter.

This is the second post documenting our September 12, 2017, visit to Haines, Alaska, a long-delayed continuation of my documentation of our 2017 Alaska Cruise. Previous posts relating to this cruise can be found HERE. The following introduction is the same as that post so that’s something else you can skip.

There’s a gallery at the end of this first post and a SmugMug gallery HERE. Photos in SmugMug can be viewed full-size. Note that the SmugMug gallery will contain all the photos from Haines; those from this post (Part 2) will be in there when the post goes live and those of the next post(s) (Part(s) 3(4,5,n+1)) I’ll add as those posts go live.

You can click on the photos in the body of the post to see a larger-but-less-than-full-size-version. If there’s a panorama, I’ll link the full-size files but be warned . . . they’re typically huge. Huger than people have ever seen before. Don’t click on those links unless you’re enjoying a biggly Interweb connection. Also, if you have biggly Interweb but you’re reading this on a phone — which is sad; VERY SAD — I wouldn’t bother with the full-size photos because they are HUGE; huger than anyone else’s huge photos. 

September 12, 2017, had me shoot a total of 734 photos (straight-up photos, no HDR bracketing) and a few videos. Readers should be thankful I pared those down to a shade over 35% of the total. Even at 259, most people’s eyes will glaze over and either briefly scan one or two or skip the lot and go investigate the mysterious Project 313

Note: the Haines photos were post-processed at different times and — depending on my mood and the subject matter and the lighting and the camera — make use of various post-processing techniques resulting in inconsistent appearances. Take them as they are. 

Note 2: Disclosure: a few photos have been digitally altered to add a few things. Nothing that substantially changes the content of said photos; it’s just something I wanted to try and it will only be evident to a few people.

I should probably do a brief introduction . . . 

First off, here’s the Princess Patter for the 12th of September of 2017.  For them who don’t click on links or don’t remember previous posts, we were scheduled to dock at Skagway. For them interested, HERE one can find my photos from my previous visit to Skagway from a 2012 cruise aboard the Star Princess

The Haines Notice explaining why we were changing ports. Here’s the original Skagway description.

Notice the mention of the White Pass railway excursion; we had booked that excursion (something we still want to do and probably will in a future cruise) but the notice had us cancel because of the idea of a ferry ride not being overly attractive. Both Melisa and I can get motion sickness and our worry was that the 45 minutes ferry boat ride (on a smallish boat) might trigger nausea and make the rest of the day miserable. Also, it would’ve required us getting up at 5:30 in the morning and that was not especially appealing. 

Here’s a map of the whole area, including the previous stops (Disappointment Bay at Yakutat Bay and Glacier Bay NP) and the next planned stop Haines and showing the additional distance to Skagway. The picture below can be clicked for a much larger version (4.4MB).

This is the Haines Port Guide describing the attractions of the area and what little other information a visitor might find useful. 

Right, that be enough background stuff to bore even the staunchest readers to tears. Many — I’m sure — have already tuned out and left. 

~ ~ ~ ~ here we go ~ ~ ~ ~

Wait . . . one more thing; most of these photos are from the Nikon P900. Nine photos (the first nine on the previous post) are from the Nikon D7000. There are no D7000 photos in this post. There are a few Samsung Note 8 Note II photos in this post but not many. Keep that in mind in case you’re considering whether using a point-and-shoot camera is sufficient to document your travels. 

As mentioned at the end of the previous post, we went back to the boat and shed a few layers of clothing since the day had warmed and it was quite pleasant. Also, of course, we availed ourselves to a bit of sustenance before heading back out.

The plan was to do the walking tour of Fort Seward (brochure linked above) and see some of the artworks fabled to be strewed throughout the place.

On the dock, I again photographed the signage welcoming cruisers to the town. You can see the one side on the opening photo and here’s the other side . . .

That’s a Note 8 Note II photo but I wanted a “better” photo of the graphic and so . . .

Is it better? Difficult to tell.

This next photo is of a piece that’s not listed on any brochure and hence I deduce it’s privately owned. It kind of reminds me of the Starbucks’s logo . . .

I certainly wouldn’t want one of those poking me in the eye . . . in fact, they look more like talons than fingernails.

I’m not going to identify all the artwork because that way you’ll experience it as I did; ignorant of what it is I was seeing. Unless you read the brochure . . . which I hadn’t.

Obviously, a fisherman . . . er . . . fisherperson explaining the size of the one that got away. Being blessed with arms that long allows one to out-tale other fisherperson out there.

I think that’s a tug that shipwrecked . . . there’s little information other than listing it as a shipwreck.

Anyway, we came across this sign . . .

. . . as is my habit, I didn’t read it.

But, for them who might want to, let me use DxO Viewpoint and de-skew it.

It might sound odd to some, but I prefer exploring without (much) prior knowledge, finding stuff that interests me (visually) and then, later, reading about what it was that I saw. I find that it adds to my enjoyment as opposed to having a list of sights one wants to see and checking them off.

Mind you, there’s a danger with that; it could be that I’ll miss something that — in retrospect — I might have wanted to see. But, that’s what second trips are for.

These next beauties weren’t listed on any brochure . . .

I don’t imagine these spend the winters outdoor but, if they do, then I’m impressed. They were in good shape.

Here’s another shot of the yellow car taken with the Note 8 Note II.

The difference in color is due to different post-processing choices, something I warn about at the beginning.

Note something in the background? Gosh, I love Alaska. Here’s another shot.

I want to know why I can’t have a canon on my front yard. Granted, it’s probably a harpoon gun, but still enough to keep unwanted visitors from my door. If unwanted visitors come in groups of two or more, you have to be judicious with your shots and wait for them to line up just right. No problem at all; barely an inconvenience.

That house was downhill and to the side of Officer’s Row . . .

. . . but before we got there, I pushed to go see the other bay (over a ridge) that was supposed to be spectacular. If you look at the Walking Tour map, there’s an arrow on the upper left corner pointing to Chilkat State Park. One of the volunteers at the dock said it was well worth the 1/4 mile walk to see the scenery.

Did I mention old people lie? And no, this isn’t one of them brain teasers where an old person says “All old people lie, and that’s the truth!”

It was closer to 3/4 miles each way and it got pretty warm, I tell you what. and, this is what we saw . . .

I mean, it’s not a bad view but worth the 1.5 mile hike along a road where people speed in disregard of the posted limit and where at times one felt as if far from civilization and expecting the sound of banjos to rise from the surrounding hills? The answer is . . . nope.

Anyway, back at Officer’s Row . . .

These were nice homes, I tell you what. Remote as all heck but in an oddly familiar setting and arrangement.

Here’s another sign, and this one I did read because once in a while one has to break one’s own rules to makes sure they are still valid.

Hard to read? Here is a version I de-skewed using DxO’s Viewpoint:

It probably was too remote and unforgiving but Haines is a place I would gladly settle in.

Not sure I could afford one of those houses, but this would be the view from their front porches . . .

Here is the same shot from the Note 8 Note II . . .

Besides the view, you’d have one of these to play with . . .

Obviously, others thought so too . . .

From that spot, I stood and snapped a few photos.

. . . before continuing the upper loop along the beautiful homes.

Here, look at this . . .

That’s one big log and if you look on the porch, two guys are working on something . . . they are working on a different log and they are building these . . .

It reminded me of the art with making Hawaiʻian racing canoes out of Koa. Not that I know how to do it, or seen it done, I thought I looked up how much one of those hand-made boats run and I don’t remember . . . probably because I don’t intend on buying one.

All I know is that if you have to ask, it means you don’t know.

All of these houses looked immaculate. I think most are actually vacation homes as many people love living here but they leave in the winter.

Heck, even the weeks are elegant.

Here’s another sign for them wanting to read a bit of information about this and that.

There aren’t that many homes there but they are interesting.

We got to the structure that looked like a lighthouse . . . and I forgot to photograph the placard. I thought I had, but no photos surfaced to prove I’m not loosing my mind.

As we walked in front of some of the historic buildings, my attention was drawn to some strange mushrooms.

As you can see, I bit into a few of them to see what they tasted like . . . yes, I kid.

What’s interesting about these mushrooms is what they look like before they open up . . .

They looked like cheese balls.

Anyway, the buildings . . . they had signage on them explaining a bit about the buildings but also drawn figure in the windows supposedly representing the way things were back then.

Oh, look! . . . interesting plants!

. . . the Octopus Berry Plant . . . or, the Jellyfish Berry Plant.

OK, OK, I’ll get back to the signage . . .

Here’s a close-up of the earlier art work on the side of the barn.

So, we walked around a bit looking for all this art stuff that was supposed to be available for viewing . . . and finally figured out it was here:

I lied . . . we figured it out after I snapped a number of photos while worrying I was trespassing on a construction site. But, no; this was the site of the art.

I’m going to do a mini-gallery here because there are a bunch of artsy photos and you can read about the pieces in the brochures linked above.

Some, I had photographed before I knew those were the “art” pieces I was looking for. Go figure.

We passed by this boat . . .

. . . and this interesting sign . . .

. . . but the boat was more interesting to me . . .but for them who want to read it, DxO Viewpoint to the rescue:

Interesting stuff (yes, yes, I read it). Still, I was more interested in the boat.

What’s annoying is that I had found the information about Rosy, Haines, AK, and now I can’t find the link and a search stubbornly refuses to turn anything up.  Oh, well.

About then, we decided to head back to the ship . . . only I wanted to walk to the point and see these rocks that were listed as interesting.

I gave Melisa my sweatshirt (it had gotten even warmer) and I headed out for a mile and a half walk there (and another mile and a half back to the ship).


Why, yes, I took lots of photos . . . that will appear on the next post.

Here’s the gallery of all the above photos:


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


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