Alaska Frequently Asked Questions
If you're looking for answers to some commonly asked questions about traveling with us, check out our General FAQs.
ARRIVAL / DEPARTURE
Q. Do you have specific arrival and departure guidelines I should follow when making my travel plans?
Yes! View our recommended arrival & departure times here.
Q. Do I need rubber boots and hiking boots?
In Southeast Alaska, the wilderness areas we explore on foot can get pretty muddy, plus most skiff landings are wet landings where there's no dock at all. So having proper footwear and ankle support is absolutely essential. Both hiking and rubber boots are good, but if we had to choose, we'd lean towards the rubber boots (aka the "Alaska tennis shoe," also known as Xtratufs, Wellingtons, gum boots). Many of our guests add insoles for support and hike all week in their rubber "mud" boots!
For the best fit and availability, bring your own rubber boots, although you may find a very limited supply for shared use on board (but there’s no guarantee).
Youth size boots are not available aboard any of our vessels so you need to bring your own children’s boots. For a complete list of what to bring, please refer to our Alaska packing list.
Q. Can I fish from the boat?
Fishing is not allowed aboard our vessels. If you are interested in fishing in Alaska, you’ll need to make arrangements for a pre- or post-cruise excursion with a fishing operator. Please note that due to FDA and CDC regulation, any fish caught on your pre-cruise excursion cannot be stored or cooked on board our vessels, but most fishing operators will ship your catch home for you (for a fee).
Q. Do I have to worry about mosquitoes and other bugs?
Good news! There aren’t mosquitoes in most of the areas we cruise in Southeast Alaska. If we do encounter them, your vessel crew can provide you with insect repellent. Mosquitoes are present in the Interior of Alaska and are most numerous in June and July. If you are concerned about mosquitoes while on a pre- or post-cruise land package, you should pack insect repellent.
Q. Will I see Denali?
Not from anywhere on your cruise, but you may see Denali if you book our pre- cruise Denali & Talkeetna Wilderness Rail Adventure land tour. Denali is often shrouded in clouds; however there is "cloud failure" in Alaska that allows for glimpses of this majestic peak—the highest in all of North America.
Q. Will I see the northern lights?
The northern lights (aka Aurora Borealis) are more prevalent in the spring and at the end of the summer and require a combination of dark, clear nights and specific solar activity. But you can rest easy, our crew are on duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week and if they see the northern lights, they will awaken any interested guests.
Q. Should we expect to encounter rough seas on our explorations?
One of the nice things about our Alaska adventures is that we operate primarily within the relatively calm waters of the Inside Passage and the boats are rarely exposed to the wild open ocean. In the event that we do cross an open passageway or expect unfavorable weather, the captain will give you plenty of notice so that you can take any seasickness medication.