A Must See in Alaska: Tracy Arm Fjord (+ Great Place for Happy Hour!)

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we just returned yesterday from our 7 day alaskan cruise and it was honestly one of the best trips i’ve been on it! the scenery was constant, engulfing and majestic. we traveled on the m/s amsterdam with holland america and would absolutely do it again! the ship holds about 1,300 guests so not overly huge but not a tiny ship either.

here’s the route we took, departing from seattle, washington:

alaska-cruise-map-1we set sail at 4pm last sunday 6/1/14 and sailed for 2 days straight (if you do this, make sure you bring plenty of dramamine even if you are fine on other boats because this water gets rocky!)

during the afternoon on our second day on the pacific ocean, we took a 5 hour ‘scenic cruise’ through tracy arm fjord and it was fantastical, even though it was rainy and foggy! in the very back, there’s the ‘sawyer glacier.’
alaskan cruise glacier in tracy armbecause you probably thought “fjord” was a typo, i will define it according to the dictionary so you don’t think i’m a word maker-upper: ” a long, narrow, deep inlet of sea between high cliffs, typically formed by submergence of a glaciated valley.”

we traveled along stephen’s passage and took a right up into tracy arm. as you can see, it dead ends so we moved slowly along those hairpins turns and at the end of it is are the glaciers but icebergs fill up most of the way through the fjord.
tracy arm mapit pretty much speaks for itself with how majestic it is…

IMG_7494waterfalls, 7,000 foot peaks that went another 600 feet below water and parts of this is a rain forest!

tracy arm alaska cruise mountainalaskan cruise glacier in tracy armand look at these big chunks of piercing blue glacier icebergs! it’s called “calving” when ice splits and falls into the sea.

alaskan cruise glacier in tracy armanother shot of the glacier in the background behind us to the left with the tint of blue!

alaskan cruise glacier in tracy arm my camera didn’t pick it up as well as i would have liked, but the water is a beautiful jade color with gorgeous streaks of blue at times:

tracy arm jade waterwe even found a sea lion just chillin’ with her bird friends (pun absolutely intended)

alaskan cruise glacier drift ice berg with sea lionthis is also my new favorite happy hour spot! thanks yamhill valley vineyards for providing us with the most delicious pinot noir ever!

the new wifestyle wine sponsor yamhill valley chelsea averyholland america allows you to bring 1 bottle (at 750ml or less, this is important because a few of us tried to get crazy with bringing those massive bottles) of wine or champagne on board with no corkage fee, otherwise it’s an $18 fee.

probably the best happy hour date i’ve been on with the kindest and most attractive husband in all the land (and sea). as one of our friends likes to say “dat hair though…” haaa. he’s like a disney prince, it’s so flowing!

tracy arm yamhill valley vineyards ryan and chelsea averyand then when our glasses got too wet and i started freaking out about my camera being ruined, we all went back to “our spot” in the corner of the ship where we would play some serious poker (3 of the crew not pictures). people would come up to us and say “oh are you playing with real money?” um…how else would you play? if you want to play with the averys, you better ante up with the real deal!

we were winning for a while but the last few days of poker kicked my keester-then it became slightly less enjoyable. i now must wait until christmas time when i can get my money back from these people!

tracy arm poker playing

group shot tracy armtracy arm fjord is about 45 miles south of juneua, alaska and it stretches 30 miles. i would highly recommend an alaskan cruise but if you are venturing near juneau,take a boat through it and allow yourself to became overwhelmed by what mother nature can create.

ps. you have to create your own happy hour by bringing the booze because there is no stopping along here, just pure nature that is more than 4,000 years old (at the face of the glacier, the ice is estimated to be anywhere from 200-75 years old)

1) have you ever seen a glacier or iceberg before? (i had not)
2) do you play poker? other card games?
3) tell me something fun you did over the past week!


  1. Kimberly Myers

    June 9, 2014 at 1:24 pm

    1. I was supposed to go on a Holland America Cruise Tour with my mom in 2010. We had everything planned and paid for and then some stupid semi driver hit her head on in her lane! Luckily for me, Holland America was amazing and refunded the entire cost of the trip for both of us. Someday, I do plan to go with my son.
    2. I only play poker when I bowl and yes, we play for big money in scratch leagues. I have to pay for my beer.
    3. I visited my nephew who got back from Afghanistan last month in the big town of Junction City, KS. He has a 3 month old baby and a puppy that is also three months old. His wife, Courtney, reminds me a bit of you Chelsea. We had a great time! I took bunches of pictures to my nephew from the family. It was great! Not as much fun as a cruise and your wine, but we had beer and chicken wings at Buffalo Wild Wings

    • Patrice Esper

      June 9, 2014 at 6:15 pm

      1) Loving your adventure – mine took place in New Zealand, like you I marveled at the majestic mountains and gushing falls as we motored through Milford sound.
      2). I haven’t played cards in awhile and never poker. Blackjack once in a blue moon…
      3). Worked for the Region at the Ontario Basketball Cup, spreading the word on Delightful Durham

      • chelsea

        June 11, 2014 at 12:28 pm

        ohhhh i hear new zealand is like no other place, patrice! it’s definitely on my list of places to visit and adding the milford sound to it thanks to you! i’ve never played blackjack so maybe we can teach other 🙂 sounds like a fun time for you this past week!

    • chelsea

      June 11, 2014 at 12:26 pm

      wow kim, i cannot even fathom how devastating losing your mother like that was-i am so sorry. glad to hear they refunded your money and that you plan to go one day with your son! it’s absolutely spectacular and you will LOVE it! glad to hear you play for keeps too 🙂

      sounds like you had a fabulous time with you nephew, glad he’s made it back safe and has a sweet new baby and puppy!

  2. TK

    June 9, 2014 at 9:05 pm

    1) Yes, in Alaska, too!
    2) Yes, I love poker. My niece’s are great poker players, too. Lots of other card games, too.
    3) Dinner with visiting family – always fun

    • chelsea

      June 11, 2014 at 12:29 pm

      ohhh i bet you are fun to play poker with TK! we are a card game family too 🙂 glad you got to spend time with your family last week, so important to spend valuable time with people you love!

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