Are there any bears in Alaska???
In Sept of 2007 I finally got to make a dream come true and go to Alaska. It has been a dream of mine for 10 years or so. A good friend of mine was sent to LA for a project and was chatting with me one night. We both realized we needed a vacation (or marry a rich husband instead…).
The Jewish holidays were approaching and i had many unused vacation days so the question was – where should I go? She asked me to come visit her in LA. Yeah, right. Like that was going to happen… I replied that if I return to the States (I live in UE/ME), I would rather combine it with a trip to a place a have not seen yet’ like Hawaii or Alaska. I told my friend that since we only had a week or so, a cruise to Alaska was a much more reasonable idea. Much to my surprise she said “ok, then let’s go to Alaska”.
The only problem was – it was the end of August, about 2 seconds before cruise season in Alaska ends. And the cruise lines weren’t exactly waiting for us… I turned to our cruise agents at LastMinuteCruises.com asking for help. It was probably one of the better jokes they heard, judging by the laughter. But, as always, they proved to be he best team around.
And so, I received a call from Kerri saying “I found you a cabin! It’s an inside cabin on the 2nd deck and you must get back to me in 2 hours and pay in full!”. Well. What can I say, it was like winning the lottery. Of course I booked it. And paid in full :-). A week later I headed to Seattle, where the Royal Caribbean Cruise departed from, one of my favorite cities in the USA.
The 6 night cruise on the “Voyager of the Seas” took off the next day to Alaska – where the bears roam free. Well, that’s what I thought till then anyway. Alaska was way more beautiful than what I expected. A 10 year wait is a long time and I was afraid I’d be disappointed with what I see. But on the contrary. I fell in love with that State. We got to see Juneau, Skagway, Tracy Arm Fjord, Prince Rupert and even were lucky enough to enjoy a full inside passage thanks to the amazing weather. However, one thing we did not see was bears.
I went to Alaska thinking I’ll see loads of bears. Hundreds of them. Thousands of them. Hundreds of thousands of them… Well, we saw zero. Not even one. Not even a baby one. Not even a teddy bear one. We went through training of “how to react if you see a bear”, getting tips of clapping hands and walking slowly backwards. Yeah, right. Like I was going to stand there and act like the bear is actually a bambi, or a rabbit, or a flower, and try to remember all of those wonderful tips I learned. Nope. I was going to run away as far and as fast as I could. That is, if i saw a bear.
Well, I obviously didn’t. Which is why I will go back to Alaska. There are other reasons, too. The the glaciers, the mountains, the people… There’s so much to see and do in Alaska. I hope you will get to go there too.
Oh, we did see whales. Humpback whales, lots and lots of them…