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Anchorage in November?

Anchorage in November?

Old Sep 12, 13, 9:12 am
  #1  
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Anchorage in November?

I am thinking about surprising my partner with an anniversary trip... it is November 29th.

He has never been to Alaska and I thought it could be a nice surprise.

Question... am I crazy for going there that late in the year?

If not, what would you recommend we do at that time? Thinking of flying on Thanksgiving day. Not sure we would stay an entire week... or perhaps come back down to Seattle or San Fran for a few days.

Appreciate any thoughts.

William
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Old Sep 12, 13, 12:45 pm
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It will likely be snowy but not super cold. The days will be quite short.

There may be skiing at Alyeska - and in fact Girdwood might be a nice place to stay. The drive from ANC is gorgeous (the roads can be a bit tricky but not challenging for anyone familiar with winter conditions) and Girdwood comes close to offering a postcard "Alaska" experience.

Anchorage is fun in the winter but not terribly different from other middle sized US towns, once you ignore the Chugach Mountains looming to the east. A flightseeing flight (if the weather's decent) is awesome in the winter.

One other idea I had would be for you to consider riding the state ferry in one direction, between Bellingham WA and Juneau (or v.v.) Get an outside cabin - not fancy at all, but traveling through the Inside Passage in the winter is a phenomenal experience. Silent forest sliding by, maybe some snowy mountains visible, maybe some orcas flopping about... it's a great way to spend a couple of days.

Here's a possible idea -

Thurs - fly to SEA. Have turkey someplace.

Friday - get a car and drive to Bellingham, via the Boeing widebody plant, Mukilteo, ferry to Whidbey Island (stop in the cute town of Langley for a late breakfast) and stop at (awesome) Deception Pass (around 4 1/2 hours.) Board the ferry Malaspina at the Bellingham terminal around 4:30; it sails at 6 PM.

(Alternatively you can take an early morning train from Seattle to Bellingham - the train station and ferry terminal are adjacent, both in the very cute historic Fairhaven district.)

Saturday - watch the world go by.

Sunday - the ferry stops in Ketchikan for several hours, enough time to get a taxi and visit Creek Street or Totem Bight park, then back on the boat for more scenery.

Monday - arrive Juneau in the morning. Spend a couple of hours in the city - see the Russian church, breakfast at the Baranof Hotel, whatever, then fly to ANC in the early afternoon (about 90 min.) Get a car at the airport and drive to Alyeska.

Tues - Alyeska, Girdwood. Weather permitting, ride the gondola for awesome views, or drive down to Portage Valley (glaciers).

Wed - morning in Anchorage, then fly to SEA/SFO.

The ferry is incredibly relaxing and scenic, something of the anti-cruise. You'll see SE Alaska in a tourist-free setting, then have a few nights in Southcentral Alaska to see the differences. IMO it would be a terrific late autumn/early winter trip.
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Old Sep 12, 13, 2:13 pm
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Wow... thanks for the advice.

Lots of things to think about... not as simple as I had hoped....
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Old Sep 18, 13, 9:46 pm
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I might recommend Juneau/Haines that time of year. I will actually be spending most of Thanksgiving week in Haines. That is a peak time of year to see/photograph eagles in the Bald Eagle Preserve just north of Haines. There are also some activities going on in Juneau that might be of interest.
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Old Sep 19, 13, 12:51 pm
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So, if we were to leave Atlanta on Thanksgiving day... and then fly back on Saturday, December 7 th... what would the recommendations be? Gardyloo made some great recommendations.... any others?

Last edited by wharvey; Sep 19, 13 at 6:30 pm
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Old Sep 19, 13, 6:20 pm
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Originally Posted by wharvey View Post
So, if we were to leave Atlanta on Thanksgiving day... and then fly back on Saturday, November 28th... what would the recommendations be? Gardyloo made some great recommendations.... any others?
Thanksgiving is on Thursday, Nov. 28. Fly back on the 30th? One day on the ground?
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Old Sep 19, 13, 6:28 pm
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It is because I was stupid! I thought Thanksgiving was the 21st. I was a week off! :-)

Assume flying back the 6th! Or 7th.
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Old Sep 23, 13, 10:57 pm
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Hello, I was thinking visiting Alaska in January. Do you think it is ok with two little kids?




Originally Posted by Gardyloo View Post
It will likely be snowy but not super cold. The days will be quite short.

There may be skiing at Alyeska - and in fact Girdwood might be a nice place to stay. The drive from ANC is gorgeous (the roads can be a bit tricky but not challenging for anyone familiar with winter conditions) and Girdwood comes close to offering a postcard "Alaska" experience.

Anchorage is fun in the winter but not terribly different from other middle sized US towns, once you ignore the Chugach Mountains looming to the east. A flightseeing flight (if the weather's decent) is awesome in the winter.

One other idea I had would be for you to consider riding the state ferry in one direction, between Bellingham WA and Juneau (or v.v.) Get an outside cabin - not fancy at all, but traveling through the Inside Passage in the winter is a phenomenal experience. Silent forest sliding by, maybe some snowy mountains visible, maybe some orcas flopping about... it's a great way to spend a couple of days.

Here's a possible idea -

Thurs - fly to SEA. Have turkey someplace.

Friday - get a car and drive to Bellingham, via the Boeing widebody plant, Mukilteo, ferry to Whidbey Island (stop in the cute town of Langley for a late breakfast) and stop at (awesome) Deception Pass (around 4 1/2 hours.) Board the ferry Malaspina at the Bellingham terminal around 4:30; it sails at 6 PM.

(Alternatively you can take an early morning train from Seattle to Bellingham - the train station and ferry terminal are adjacent, both in the very cute historic Fairhaven district.)

Saturday - watch the world go by.

Sunday - the ferry stops in Ketchikan for several hours, enough time to get a taxi and visit Creek Street or Totem Bight park, then back on the boat for more scenery.

Monday - arrive Juneau in the morning. Spend a couple of hours in the city - see the Russian church, breakfast at the Baranof Hotel, whatever, then fly to ANC in the early afternoon (about 90 min.) Get a car at the airport and drive to Alyeska.

Tues - Alyeska, Girdwood. Weather permitting, ride the gondola for awesome views, or drive down to Portage Valley (glaciers).

Wed - morning in Anchorage, then fly to SEA/SFO.

The ferry is incredibly relaxing and scenic, something of the anti-cruise. You'll see SE Alaska in a tourist-free setting, then have a few nights in Southcentral Alaska to see the differences. IMO it would be a terrific late autumn/early winter trip.
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Old Sep 24, 13, 8:47 am
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Originally Posted by victoriyad View Post
Hello, I was thinking visiting Alaska in January. Do you think it is ok with two little kids?
Lots of people with little kids are in Alaska in January, including mine when he was little. What would you be doing?
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