Le Chic En Rose

Diaries of an independent traveller

Having spent the day exploring the little port of Seward (see here), it was time to return to the railway station by the harbour and board the evening train heading up north to our next stop of Anchorage.

Many of our fellow cruise ship passengers now joined up with tour groups to explore the main part of Alaska but we were travelling onwards independently with our friends. The Alaska Railroad train was pretty much full when we departed on time around 6pm – we had pre-booked our tickets with Alaskan trains before we left Australia. Although the line stays open all year round, the high season is from May to September, which naturally coincides with the cruise season. I would highly recommend advance booking (when we can travel again!).

The 470 mile railway line from Seward goes as far as Fairbanks just south of the Arctic Circle, connecting many small and otherwise isolated communities along the way.

We took the twilight train up to Anchorage, a journey of just over 4 hours. It’s a fabulous way to admire the landscape either from the comfort of your seat or a special viewing deck at the back of each carriage.

The blue and yellow train wends its way through breathtaking wilderness scenery all offset with the stunning hues of the setting sun on the horizon.

We chugged up mountain passes with spectacular views of the snow-capped Kenai Mountains, over bridges with gushing streams and marshy swampland. On one occasion we passed a moose grazing in one of the meadows but it dashed back into the bushland before I could capture a good photo. Much of the area once you leave Seward is part of the Chugach National Forest, which is the farthest north and west of all American state forests and is 30% covered in ice (you can read up more background information here).

A substantial dinner was served in the dining car – the luxury of the warmth and comforts of the train interior are a marked contrast to the wild terrain and landscape outdoors (wrap up warmly if you head out onto the viewing deck!).

About an hour or so before Anchorage we came alongside the inlet known as the Turnagain Arm, a mix of water and endless mudflats. Beluga whales and bald eagles amongst other wildlife are known to inhabit this area although we didn’t have any sightings. By this stage the sun was dipping in and out behind the clouds in the distance and we followed this surreal scene all the way to Anchorage Station arriving just as night was falling.

It was truly a memorable ride and a unique way to experience the amazing wilderness scenery of Alaska.

Copyright Β© 2021 Rosemary Thomas Le Chic En Rose. All rights reserved

11 thoughts on “Twilight Journey – Alaskan Railroad to Anchorage

  1. restlessjo says:

    I love a train ride with scenery, Rosemay. Wonderful memories. It must all seem so long ago πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Hope things are no worse with family.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes have always loved scenic train rides Jo! It does seem so long ago – really like another world at present! It’s nice to have these memories πŸ™‚ Thanks for the support- just have to manage from afar as best we can. All well here though and weather is lovely πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Hope you had a lovely weekend xx πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes it’s outstandingly beautiful! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Leo D Wakefield says:

    Having lived in Seward and anchorage for 20 years the trip between Seward to Anchorage with the Alaska railroad should not be missed.
    It is beautiful.
    Outside of town the freeway and the rail belt diverge. The train travels through mountain passes you cannot view from the road.
    You can relax and not have to deal with getting stuck behind motorhomes or fisherman returning home with their seafood harvest.
    If you like trains you cannot miss with this once in a lifetime trip.
    The conductor or onboard staff will point out any wildlife, like bears or moose that might be passing along the rail belt.
    If your traveling through out alaska you will have plenty of bus to rides.
    Don’t miss your chance to take one of the most scenic rail trips in the world.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for all the information! Yes we found the rail trip amazing – we are so lucky to have been able to do it! As you say the staff were really friendly and pointed out the moose in the clearing (too quick for me to get a photo though!). It’s definitely one of the most scenic rail trips in the world and hope tourists can start coming back soon πŸ™‚

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  3. Looks wonderful. We’ve wanted to go there for a long time, but for now will have to experience it through other people’s blogs. May be when the current troubles are over we can go.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes we’re all travelling vicariously at present! Alaska is a wonderful place and we were fortunate to go there when we did. I still have some more posts to do on Alaska – we took so many photos!

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  4. vinneve says:

    Nice adventure!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Very lucky to have done this trip – Alaska was amazing!

      Liked by 1 person

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