Northern Passages & Glacier Bay

Small Ship Journey: Discover miles and miles and miles of coastline—in a land where everything is great. Exploration along these passages is no folly, and uncovering your awe for Alaska is almost better than finding gold.

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Why Travel with NPCA & UnCruise

With our shared commitment to protecting fragile ecosystems and local communities, our partnership with UnCruise Adventures offers you unforgettable travel opportunities to Alaska, Olympic, Hawaii and beyond.

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PS: Book by December 13, 2019 and receive up to $1,200 Early Bird Savings on select 2020 Alaska itineraries.

What to know more about UnCruise Adventures? Check out this overview presentation on all they have to offer.

Get a glimpse into Southeast Alaska the UnCruise way.

UnCruise Adventures specializes in small ships, BIG adventures (90 travelers or less).


2020 Departure Dates:

  • April 25
  • May 2, 9, 16, 23, 30
  • June 13, 20, 27
  • July 11, 18, 25
  • August 8, 15, 22

INCLUDED HIGHLIGHTS:

  • View Margerie and Grand Pacific Glaciers
  • One day in Glacier Bay National Park, featuring an expert naturalist program
  • Whale watching in Icy Strait and Lynn Canal or Chatham Strait
  • Wildlife searches—bears, sea otters, harbor seals, sea lions, and Dall’s porpoises
  • South Marble Island—a bird and sea lion haulout
  • Beachcomb along intertidal zones
  • Hike and bushwhack in the Tongass National Forest
  • Kayak, paddle board, and skiff in glacial fjords

map

(Please note this trip operates Juneau to Sitka and Sitka to Juneau)

DAY 1: Juneau, Alaska – Embarkation: There’s nothing like a hearty greeting from your crew and some bon voyage bubbly. With all souls settled in on board, you’re underway. From the bow, Southeast Alaska welcomes you with Coast Mountain views. (D)

DAY 2: Captain’s Choice: Lynn Canal or Chatham Strait, your captain makes the call. Either choice, go with the flow. The water is fine. The guides help you gear up, and lead your adventure along the rocky outcroppings. By kayak or paddle board, take in the size of this wilderness. Bald eagles dot the tree tops. Harbor seals bob up and under. Pods of orcas—the largest in the dolphin family—skim along the water’s surface. (BLD)

DAY 3: Glacier Bay National Park: What a privilege. At 3.3 million acres—this UNESCO World Heritage Site and Biosphere Reserve is massive. At Bartlett Cove, a park ranger joins in on your day’s exploration and shares the park’s history. Orange-beaked puffins, guillemots, marbled murrelets are just a few possible sightings. Keep a tally—the list will grow. Arriving at South Marble Island, you can hear and smell ‘em before you see ‘em—it’s a haulout for sea lions. Perched above around the bend, watch for mountain goats, and lower along shore, foraging bears. Up bay, glacial silt turns the water a milky white. Margerie and Grand Pacific Glaciers—one holding steady, the other retreating. Lounging harbor seals laze on bits of bergs. And if time allows, tuck up in Tidal Inlet. End this very full day with your feet up for the sail into Icy Strait. (BLD)

DAY 4: Icy Strait: Nearly to the Pacific Ocean, Icy Strait is remote and wild. The plan? Whales and marine mammals. Spouts and fin slaps are certain giveaways. More rollicking sea lions and birds. But don’t forget to look straight down. Porpoises and dolphins may hitch a ride on the bow wave. And don’t worry about missing any wildlife; it’s a favorite mission of the crew to point out any creatures they spot. Make a break for it and head for a quiet pocket along the rugged coastline. A different sort of wild than the open strait, muskeg leads to forest bushwhacks. Skiff the shore and down along kelp-threaded channels. (BLD)

DAY 5: Chichagof Island / Peril Strait: Kick off the morn with on-deck yoga stretches (your guides love it when you join them). Meander through glacier-carved fjords along the Chichagof coast. Then stop. It’s a prime time to lower the kayaks and skiffs. Camera in hand, set off on land and sea explorations. Closer inspection by skiff, moss-dripping trees run right down to the water. Any bears in there? With one of the world’s largest populations of bears, it’s possible. Go searching for giant trees and tidal pools. Hiking in the Tongass, it won’t take long to find them. Your eagle-eyed guides lead the pack—and pull up the rear. Later, wend along a twisting channel known for dramatic currents. Peril Strait runs 50 miles to Salisbury Sound. (BLD)

DAY 6: Sergius Narrows / Neva Strait: There’s an eerie, enigmatic feeling in these woods. Morning fog catches like cotton balls on trees. The aptly named narrows squeezes to only 300 feet wide in one spot and a shallow 24 feet deep. The shorelines are close and it’s good territory for play. Skiff ashore and hike into the backcountry. Otters back float working to crack snacks resting on their bellies. Opening at Hoonah Sound, the squeeze is back on. Wind into Neva Strait. Watch the scenery change in the late fading light—from the hot tub of course. (BLD)

DAY 7: Krestof & Nakwasina Sounds: There aren’t many straight lines along Baranof Island. Its western side is spattered with remote, uninhabited islands. These features mean endless opportunities for adventure. Secluded coves. Tree-covered islets. Drop anchor, pick your modus operandi, and get going. Kayak, paddle board, or skiff—you’re on the level with curious sea lions and possibly whales. Rocky intertidal zones make good beach combing. Turn a stone or two to see what’s underneath. There are no groomed trails here—get out on a guided hike John Muir would approve of. Toast your voyage with a festive Farewell Dinner and a “photo journal” of your trip. A gift to you, from your expedition team. (BLD)

DAY 8: Sitka, Alaska – Disembarkation: Cruise into Sitka this morning over breakfast. Farewell new friends! Disembark and transfer to the airport or your UnCruise hotel stay or land tour. (B)


To reserve space call the NPCA Travel Manager at 202-454-3305, email travel@npca.org, or fill out this information form.

Check out NPCA’s full tour lineup at www.npca.org/trips

  • Cost:
    From $3,795 per person, single supplement applies
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