Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Seward, Alaska

As I said in my last post, Seward , Alaska is easily one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Not pretty like Paris, France is pretty--full of man made objects and art that make it pretty-- No, Seward is naturally and ruggedly beautiful. The rough ocean meets the big mountains meet the fluffy clouds. It is simply breathtaking. In Seward, you can visit the Kenai Fjords. A fjord (pronounced fyord) is an inlet of land with steep sides caused by glacial activity. To you and me that basically means pretty mountains with glaciers everywhere.

This wooden bear is cute, but look at the cruise ship and the mountains in the backgroud. So beautiful. The whole time we were there, the clouds lingered about half way up the mountains and the effect was majestic. We did not go to Alaska on a big cruise ship, but I have heard it is the best way to see everything.
Beautiful glacier melting into waterfalls in Resurrection Bay.
More waterfalls into the ocean..beautiful.

I think this one is Harding Glacier. Here is an example of the bright blue color the glaciers cast. It is because of the absorption of red and yellow light (just like in oceans) and something to do with hydrogen bonding. The effect is brilliant blue. On clear days the color is much more vivid. Sadly, it was overcast most of the time we were there.

The wildlife in the Seward area is AMAZING. This is a gorgeous Bald Eagle that was sitting atop a telephone pole and my husband was able to get a great picture with his zoom lens. It is so sad to think that the Bald Eagle was on an endangered species list at one time. They are still protected and with good reason-they are so beautiful and regal.
We took a day cruise out into the bay and all around the Aleutain Islands that surround Seward. The waters were VERY ROUGH and scary but the scenery was worth all the nausea and fear. There was a pod of Humpback Whales and they were being very active. They breeched and slapped their tails and fins for over 30 minutes. We have seen Humpbacks in Hawaii a few times, but they have never put on a show like they did in Alaska.

This is a Dahl's Porpoise which is a cousin to an Orca Whale. The coloring is the same as an Orca but the Dahl's porpoise is about 1/3 the size of the whale. We saw an Orca while we were there, but it was in the glacial water with tons of little icebergs and so we could not get a good photo. There are a lot of little otters and they almost flirt with the tourists. Half the time it seems like they are waving. They usually hang out in parties of two and they are very active and jovial. They lose most of their heat through their hands/paws so that is why they hold their little hands together--to maintain their body heat--awwwww.
This was an angry male sea lion protecting his harem. According to our boat guide, male sea lions stake claim to a rock in the ocean then they lure many females to live on said rock and he mates with those females for over a month. During this time he does not eat at all because he cannot leave his rock. If he leaves his rock, another male sea lion will overtake it-so he eats and eats and eats in the months preparing for mating season sometimes gaining over 500 lbs. Damn.
Learing about all the animals was just as good as seeing them.
All in all, my husband and I agree that this trip to Alaska was one of our best vacations yet. We look forward to going back and visiting Juneau, Ketchikan, and other parts of this beautiful state.
Have a beautiful day!
(all photos property of MonkeyPosh LLC and most are courtesy of Mr. MonkeyPosh's mad photography skills)


Blogger MISS S said...

As I said to you on the phone the other day it is such a blessing when you go on these trips. You are like a spunge of information. Not to mention you post the best pictures. I do not think that those otters are trying to keep their little paws warm. They are praying for the tourists who have no clue (that does not include you)!!

Thanks for sharing about your trip! Many hugs

12:30 PM  
Blogger rosarita said...

Late to the party, but I want to thank you for your Alaska posts and all the terrific pictures. Great *virtual* vacation!

5:15 PM  
Blogger Patricia Perry said...

Those wildlife pics are awesome! (Love those otters.)

I've never really been interested in visting Alaska, but your posts are causing me to reconsider. It looks like you had a wonderful trip.

6:50 AM  
Blogger WinterWheat said...

Those pictures are stunning. I love the fact that not only do you love to travel, but when you travel you really get your hands dirty with all of the things you can see and do wherever you are -- not just the cultural stuff but the physical-environment stuff too, like checking out the wildlife and taking day cruises and driving off-road and whatnot. You really make the most of your trips and get to know the country surrounding you. :-)

10:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beautiful pictures!! I will certainly plan my next trip to Alaska.

3:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love your pics as usual Monkey as well as your writing! The otter was so esp cute!

6:38 PM  
Blogger violetnoir said...

J--These photos are gorgeous! Actually, there was something in the paper yesterday about Alaskan train trips and R and I started talking about doing something like that. Based on your photos, maybe we ought to.

Hugs to you, D and that adorable Finley!

8:46 AM  
Blogger Parisjasmal said...

** Miss S-
Thanks for the kind words my friend. I throw in little tidbits of information especially for you since I know you like it.
On another note--what a coup last week in the Big Brother house. Ollie is sneaky!
Poor Jerry....poor poor Jerry. He is going to get eaten alive I am afraid. We must get out BB chat on later this week.

Thanks for such kind words. Sadly, my photos cannot do the beauty of that area justice. I loved Alaska.
Have a lovely day!

**Hello Pat!
Thanks...and yes the otters are so-SO cute. You know, I was not all gung ho about it either at first, but boy did I fall in love. I think you would LOVE Alaska if you ever went. YOu are a lover of beauty, and Alaska (the coastal areas) are WAY beautiful. Speaking of beautiful, I must see your China pics!
Hugs to you!

**Hello WW-
Thanks so much for your comments. I always have a huge fear when I visit somewhere that I will never again get to visit it again (sometimes this is true)- so I try to see it and experience it all.
By the way--you and Violet Noir have D and I on a mad hunt for blue potatos. We cannot find them ANYWHERE....ugh!
Hugs to you and Fi.

Thanks, and thanks for visiting my blog. Alaska is indeed amazing!
Have a great day.

**Hi Ponchy-
Thanks for the shout out. I am glad you stopped by. I know--I wanted to bring an otter home with me.
Beautiful day to you!

**Violet Noir
Hello Queen of Divine Footwear!
D and I saw the train that runs through Denali and it looks very nice. I think the scenery from the train is awesome. In some places you are on a raised track and you go right through the mountains. I think you should go. It is amazing!
Big hugs to you and your lovely family!

9:02 AM  
Blogger k said...

WOW!!!!!!! just WOW!

8:43 AM  

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