Thursday, July 9, 2015

The Coral Princess Northbound Cruise and Land Tour Day 13

The Coral Princess Northbound Cruise and Land Tour
Gold Dredge 8 and Riverboat Discovery Tour

Our last early morning tour on the land cruise started with a short sleepy bus ride to the Alyeska Pipeline and Gold Dredge 8, where we learned about the pipeline, gold mining in various forms and even got to take a stab at gold panning before exiting through the gift shop.

Before getting to the gold dredge we received instruction on how to properly pan for gold and what to expect when sifting through our bag of dirt. And just like a summer youth soccer league, everybody was a winner, some panned more gold than others (I only managed to get about $8 worth of gold flakes while another woman on our tour panned $32 worth). It was definitely more fun than you imagine and shed a little more light on the strenuous life that men and women of the gold rush endured, aka it's hard work.

 And then it was our turn. . .

Once we done panning for gold, eating complimentary cookies and looking through the gift shop, we hopped back on the train and eventually the bus. The next and final stop of the tour was at the Riverboat Discovery, where lunch was offered (I didn't get to have much, thanks to someone on the bus taking my seat I sat in the center back seat which made me unbearably car sick) and we got to hear Iditarod champion Lance Mackey talk about the trail and his experiences.

After looking through yet another gift shop we boarded the riverboat for a scenic cruise along the Chena River. Along the way a seaplane pilot talks to the boat and performed maneuvers, we stopped to see sled dogs in action and disembarked at the Chena Village to learn about Native American history, traditions and cultures.

After that we boarded the bus and made the short back to our hotel for relaxation and dinner.

A quick video highlight from the Riverboat Discovery cruise:
Unfortunately, I can't figure out to make this bigger and to display it in the full 1080p on command, so make sure to enlarge and select 1080p!

Next up, my last day in Alaska.

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