Two new features for the techie have been added--
- Large LCD screens in the lounge showing a GPS based map of where we are--on a topo map showing water depth and land elevations
- Satellite Internet and a wireless system in the lounge.
Crew is divided into three groups
- Expedition Staff--the people who organize where we go, what we do--the expedition leader, the 4 naturalists and the video guy.
- The "Hotel" staff--the kitchen, purser (the accountant--anything that needs counting--including when we leave the ship for a hike) dining room, bar, and stewards.
- The ship crew--the people who run the ship, the zodiacs and the kayaks.
Food is fantastic. I'm going to have to skip some meals to avoid gaining too much weight. Lots of North pacific fish--Alaskan salmon, black cod. One night get some real Minnesota wild rice. The head chef for the company is on-board. He says it's from Bemidji, MN Ojibwa. For dinner there are three new options each night. They ask you to guess what you're going to order by noon so they have a better idea how much to prepare.
The exercise room is a stationary bike, a elliptical trainer and a treadmill up on the "sun deck" with a canvas tarp that can be drawn around it to cut down on the wind. Used it--had a great view of the mountains we were sailing by.
The bartender is on duty from before lunch to after dinner. If you want a beer at some other time, just take one and note your room number. They turn the lounge/bar area into a gift shop twice--hall the stuff out of storage and put it on the tables.
They use zodiacs--large inflatable rubber boats--think Jacques Cousteau--to get us to the hikes. They run them up on the beach and you jump out into about 1 foot of water. (We tie up to a dock in Steak, Juneau and Glacier Bay Park Lodge).