Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Beautiful Skagway, AK!

 We docked in Skagway yesterday early enough in the morning that we were able to make a beeline to town and see what there was to see!

Okay, Irene really wanted to make a run to Starbucks, and I was eager to accompany her.  We had both been here before, so unlike first time tourists, we had an agenda.

That agenda included a visit to the knife shop for a couple of really nice ULU knives and bowls (Love the one I got her last time so much that I want one at home as well as the cabin.) and of course, a visit to the local quilt shop, The Rushin’ Tailor!

It wasn’t a surprise that we found a good portion of my 49 students ALREADY with arms full to bursting with the goodies that the Rushin Tailor had to offer. 

Hold the goodies high, ladies!

I had a great time visiting with the staff while quilters shopped!

Irene, Starbucks in hand!

We loved these buildings!

And off on our railroad adventure we go!

Built in 1898 during the Klondike Gold Rush, this narrow gauge railroad is an International Historic Civil Engineering Landmark, a designation shared with the Panama Canal, the Eiffel Tower and the Statue of Liberty.

The WP&YR railway was considered an impossible task but it was literally blasted through coastal mountains in only 26 months.

The $10 million project was the product of British financing, American engineering and Canadian contracting. Tens of thousands of men and 450 tons of explosives overcame harsh and challenging climate and geography to create “the railway built of gold.”

The WP&YR climbs almost 3000 feet in just 20 miles and features steep grades of up to 3.9%, cliff-hanging turns of 16 degrees, two tunnels and numerous bridges and trestles. The steel cantilever bridge was the tallest of its kind in the world when it was constructed in 1901.

The 110 mile WP&YR Railroad was completed with the driving of the golden spike on July 29, 1900 in Carcross Yukon connecting the deep water port of Skagway Alaska to Whitehorse Yukon and beyond to northwest Canada and interior Alaska.

White Pass & Yukon Route became a fully integrated transportation company operating docks, trains, stage coaches, sleighs, buses, paddlewheelers, trucks, ships, airplanes, hotels and pipelines. It provided the essential infrastructure servicing the freight and passenger requirements of Yukon’s population and mining industry. WP&YR proved to be a successful transportation innovator and pioneered the inter-modal (ship-train-truck) movement of containers.

The WP&YR suspended operations in 1982 when Yukon’s mining industry collapsed due to low mineral prices. The railway was reopened in 1988 as a seasonal tourism operation and served 37,000 passengers. Today, the WP&YR is Alaska’s most popular shore excursion carrying over 400,000 passengers during the 2015 May to September tourism season operating on the first 67.5 miles (Skagway, Alaska to Carcross, Yukon) of the original 110 mile line. [source]
Selfie in our vintage rail car!
It was an amazing journey!
I have had a very difficult time with posting photos and writing blog posts, so you will find the rest of the rail photos in the slide show below.  Maybe more still shots when I get home. Right now I feel like I’m using up my cruise time fighting with internet connection and slow upload speeds, so I’m going to leave you for a bit and spend time with my quilters and my family!

More to follow as i am able!
Enjoy your Tuesday, everyone!


Quiltville Quote of the Day!

Don't be afraid to start! It's okay to start small. it's okay to move slowly. Just begin! Vintage orphan block quilt found in North Carolina.

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  1. I loved Skagway when we went on our cruise to Alaska years ago too - didn't see that quilt shop but did get the knife and bowl and took the train ride too - I believe there was a quilt shop in Sitka though that I found at that time - 10 years ago?

  2. Following your trip in IG and FB, the Blog can wait until later. NO worries! Take time for YOU! Getting Rain here in my region of Washington- unusual weather for July here. Great stitching time though. Guild Potluck tonight. Busy Day.

  3. Oh yes, enjoy yourself and keep notes but if you have trouble posting your blog, let it wait! We know you're having a good time. :)

  4. We can wait! Take a few notes and pics and don't mess with posting. You can catch us later. You are with FAMILY! Skagway is so wonderful and the people there are great.

  5. last fall read a terrific book called "women of the klondike"...excellent information on how women traveled, dressed, thrived and failed on trips with and without men to take them...recommend it heartily...

  6. Be in the moment, Bonnie. You can't do that if you are fiddling with your laptop, the internet, and uploading stuff. You have told us that it's difficult to do, so we all know that news will be sparse until you have better connections. Please don't give it another thought. Enjoy your mom, your aunts, the cruise, and the quilters. You may not ever have another chance to experience these people in this location under these circumstances. Be well, my friend and enjoy yourself.

  7. I would love to see Ak. All your post are worth the wait. Thank you

  8. Thanks for trying. Your time is better spent with family and the quilters.

  9. Bonnie, yes it was so worth the wait. Beautiful time your having. My grandson Teo (6 yrs. old) was just searching Thomas the train and friends. He paused and much rather watch your adventures on my laptop. Thank you for always taking everyone with you. Me included.

  10. Wow!! How awesome is the scenery. What a wonderful adventure you have taken us on. I only wish I could have been there with you. Have a great time!!

  11. Bonnie,
    I want to thank you for all you contribute to the quilting world. All you do is truly remarkable. Tonight's quote was incredibly appropriate as my daughter had just landed in San Antonio to begin the first leg of her journey in Adulthood. Kathleen turned 18 in May, Graduated in June and is on her way to flying high and achieving great things with our United States Air Force. I couldn't be more proud of both my daughters. Her sister Molly began her service to our great country in Jauary of 2015. Thank you so very very much! Mo Shippee, Air Force Mom x 2

  12. Don't worry about us. Go have fun!! Breath taking scenery!

  13. What - no Starbucks on board that ship?? Poor Irene! Please don't worry about this blog thing - instead enjoy the trip, your Aunts and Mom and Irene, too - as well as all the other quilters. We'll wait!!

  14. YOU are Alaska's newest and best travel agent :)! Everyone looks so happy.

    Your saying-of-the-day reminds me of that old old saying - a journey begin with a single step.

    HUGS JulieinTN

  15. Gorgeous pictures and you always give such wonderful informatieon about THE Hisrory.
    Tried posting several times but Google chrome keeps telling me it is THE wrong password
    But I know it is right I would never forget this one. Might have to go back to regular Google again.
    Enjoy each minute and Thanks so much for all THE sharing you do Bonnie.

    Happy travers and quilting,Yoka Bazilewich

  16. My husband, sister and I embarked on the same journey you're taking. I loved it. It's so much fun for me to relive that trip via your blog everyday. I'm so sad that I missed the quilt shop in Skagway. I took my trip 2 years ago. Maybe it wasn't there then. I try never to miss a good quilting shop if I know it's in close proximity. I'm glad you're having such a wonderful time with your mother and aunts on this trip. It looks like the railway trip would have been wonderful to do, but our cruise did not allow enough time to do this, since I was also on the International Master Gardener's Cruise, so I was tied up visiting local gardens. I loved the opportunity to see what gardeners this far north were able to raise, but I know that they had much free time in the winter to concentrate on quilting if they so desired. I love that you're sharing this cruise with us. I am just appreciative for whatever snippets we might get despite the slow wifi. Just do what you can and we will appreciate it no matter what.

  17. We loved Skagway when we were there 2 years ago. The quilt shop was great. I wanted to look around so I sat my husband in front of the piles of precut pillowcases and asked him to pick some for us while I looked around.

    We hit a quilt shop in just about every stop. I missed one since I wasn't feeling well the day we hit Juneau. My husband never said a word about how much fabric I brought home.


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