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Deck yourself out for your next cruise! What clothes should you bring, and what should stay at home. Offer up packing tips, and savvy shopping info, too

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  #1  
Old March 6th, 2011, 09:45 PM
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osagegal osagegal is offline
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Default Alaska in July...what to wear???

I have read alot about not wearing or taking jeans. So, what do you take to wear on port days in Alaska? Also, is there a chance for some shorts weather in Alaska in July or is that out of the question? All input greatly appreciated
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Old March 6th, 2011, 09:54 PM
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We saw jeans everywhere. People say not to go with jeans as if it is raining when they get wet they take a long time to dry and can be cold.

I would say when out touring dress in layers; thermals, warm under layer, second fleece/sweatshirt, outer gortex. Have gloves, hat, and sunglasses too.

It could be 50's and raining every day or it could turn around and be 70's and shorts and t-shirt too.

Good luck!

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Originally Posted by osagegal View Post
I have read alot about not wearing or taking jeans. So, what do you take to wear on port days in Alaska? Also, is there a chance for some shorts weather in Alaska in July or is that out of the question? All input greatly appreciated
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Old March 6th, 2011, 10:12 PM
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We went to Alaska last July during the third week and we experienced cool drizzly weather with highs in the 50s for most of the week. I was glad to have my blue jeans, but I also wore my black stretch pants. I just checked my pictures and I had on my blue jeans for all of them in the ports.

I definitely agree with dressing in layers, including silk long underwear - they're light and warm - a fleece vest and a waterproof jacket with a hood. Also wear wool socks and something windproof when on shore or out on the deck, especially when you are close to the glaciers. I wore my black Croc Mary-Jane style shoes - comfortable and waterproof.

We spoke to another couple who cruised to Alaska two weeks later and they had sunny weather with highs in the low 80s in the ports - totally different weather. The wind on deck was still very cool - no sunbathing around the pool!

Have fun - Alaska is beautiful!
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Old March 7th, 2011, 12:20 AM
klauer klauer is offline
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Jeans are good, also there are water-resistant cargo pants that zip off into shorts from companies like Ex Officio and Columbia. I've never gone with long underwear because it isn't a layer that you can easily remove if you get hot!
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Old March 7th, 2011, 08:48 AM
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Plan for rain, no matter what temps you have. Unfortunately, you won't know what temps to expect until a few days before leaving home. The year we went, it was early August and we had a variety of weather, none really cold enough for long underwear, I think the coldest was around 50 degrees. A friend of mine went the first run in May one year, she only took long pants, heavy sweaters and jackets. The weather was warm, in the low 80's the whole week, they had no rain. She said most of the pax including herself roasted all week.

A couple days on the cruise, plus pre and post days in Vancouver, were warm enough for shorts/capris. There were people swimming in the pool on sea days. But, even though it is summer Alaska can have cool temps at times. Some port towns, such as Ketchikan and Juneau, have rain almost every day of the year.

So it's all as clear as mud...you just have to wait and see the predictions a couple days before you go (check each port town) to get an idea of what to expect.

We took jeans, they were fine. The one thing I didn't have and wished I would have was a raincoat long enough to cover my bum. I had a jacket and carried an umbrella. There were a few times having to sit (tender boat, whale watching boat) on a wet seat. What worked well for me was a light T under a shirt with a rain jacket (if it looked like rain) and jeans.

We sent our jeans out for laundry, we each took 3 pair for a 9 day trip. I took knit pants as well, but wore them on sea days. I felt lucky that I also brought a pair capri length pants too. Light layers work best in Alaska.

One thing I wouldn't repeat (I had read it everywhere) would be to take 2 pair of sneakers, in case one got wet. They did get wet, on the outside, all we had to do was dry them off. Since there were 4 of us (kids went with us) those extra pairs of sneakers took up a huge amount of the suitcase space and weren't really needed.

Last edited by Happy ks; March 7th, 2011 at 08:49 AM.
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  #6  
Old March 7th, 2011, 08:50 AM
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I rarely travel with jeans because they're heavy, take too long to dry (certainly an issue in AK) and they're far harder to dress up if needed than black pants are. For Alaska, I brought khaki & black pants in cotton and in microfiber. I do have silk long underwear but never needed them on a cruise vacation - our last trip (Sept 2007) was so warm - 70s most days - unbelievable! I also had goretex pants with me but only wore those once - I didn't need to bring them - but you never know.

One pair I brought was similar to this - ottoman knit bootcut: http://www.travelsmith.com/jump.jsp?...cadoResultId=2

I have a pair I travel with now, similar to these: http://www.magellans.com/store/Cloth...n___PantsWP022

I also have several pairs of convertible pants - nylon, cotton - a couple from Danskin at Walmart (I know! but they've held up well - I have 2 pairs I've had for 3 years now....) and one pair from Campmor.com (they're nylon - quick dry, better for tropical or wet vacations)

I only brought 3 pairs of shoes (we were in AK for 12 days - visiting family outside Fairbanks, hiking & sightseeing, then we drove to Anchorage and did a 7 night cruise on Princess from Whittier to Vancouver) I brought black satin heels for formal nights & a couple casual nights when I dressed up more, black privo mary janes for short shore excursions, walking around the ship, and dinners, and goretex hiking shoes - goretex means I never have to worry about them being wet!!! I love those shoes!! I got them for a great price at Sierra Trading Post and wear them all the time! Hubby also brought lots of goretex - pants, jacket, hiking shoes - so we only had to bring one article - and it's good to go the next time you wear it
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Last edited by Hoyaheel; March 7th, 2011 at 08:54 AM.
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  #7  
Old March 7th, 2011, 09:06 AM
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Thank you so much for all the info!!!! I may try to invest in at least 1 pair of quick dry hiking pants for each of us. I really hated to spend a whole lot of money on a new wardrobe that I am pretty sure won't get much use outside of this trip. Glad to know that jeans will be ok! You guys are great and this forum has been invaluable to a newbie like me!
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Old March 7th, 2011, 10:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osagegal View Post
I really hated to spend a whole lot of money on a new wardrobe that I am pretty sure won't get much use outside of this trip.
You absolutely do not need to invest in a new wardrobe to cruise - ANYWHERE! I'm sure you'll be able to layer & dress your family from mostly what you already own

If you want convertible pants, check out sales/outlets online at REI.com (reioutlet.com) Sierratradingpost.com (I get discount coupons from them in my email EVERY DAY - sign up) and campmor.com (check the Hot Deals section first!)

If you live near outlet stores - check there too. My goretex overpants I bought - $10 at an LLBean outlet. Normally you can't find anything goretex under $100!!!
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