4th International Gathering

15-22 May, 2013
Gulf of Alaska, USA

4th International Gathering - 2013
MS Volendam, Gulf of Alaska

The official gathering was preceded by a bus tour, taking a small group to Vancouver Island, BC. Guided by Bill Merilees (Western Canada Chieftain) we discovered some of the beauties the British Columbia has to offer. We visited the Butchart Gardens, Victoria, Merilees Nature Reserve, Chemainus murals, and the very cool "Billy Goats on the Roof" cafe to name but a few. We returned to Vancouver and walking the Merilees Trail in Stanley Park before joining more Merrilees and boarding our cruise ship.

Pre-Cruise tour group at the Merilees Trail in Stanley Park

Not the biggest international gathering, but it was still attended by approximately 50 family members covering all corners of the earth. The cruise took us on a magical tour of beautiful Alaska. We travelled the scenic Inside Passage towards our first port of call in Juneau, continuing on to Skagway, Glacier Bay, with our last stop in Ketchikan. Over all we have pretty good weather at each port where there were a number of excursions on offer from watching wild life, scenic helicopter rides, cultural shows, and hiking adventures. Glacier Bay was a highlight for everyone, as it was the most beautiful day to see such stunning scenery.

Over the course of the 7 day trip, we had 4 official meet & greet gatherings. Starting with a cocktail evening and formal dinner. The last was to welcome in our new clan chief Bob Merrilees. Retiring chief Mike Mirrilees was also given a wonderful album of good wishes, fond memories, and photos of his time as clan chief.

More details on the pre-cruise bus tour around Canada - May 2013