skeeterbug, I took a land tour/cruise. We landed in Fairbanks at 11pm and began touring on the Chena River the next day. The next traveling was by train from Fairbanks to Healy, then spent the next day in Denali. We soon bailed from our tour bus and caught a green shuttle bus which was more to our liking. Went to Wonder lake at mile 85 in denali came out that evening which made a good 13 hour day traveling in the park. Next move was by motor coach to Seward, a 10 hour road trip. Boarded a ship at Seward crossed the Gulf of Alaska the first 24 hours and went straight to Glacier Bay NP, went to Haines, Ketchikan , Juneau and ended in Vancouver. We spent several hours in each port except Vancouver. Went on 3 excursions that were very good, lot of Brown bear in Haines on one of our tours.
This was our second trip to Alaska and though we tried to see and do many different things it is so vast and beautiful I felt the need to go back as soon as we can. We were in Fairbanks on 9/4 and returned to our home on 9/16. The fall colors were beautiful, snow was starting to fall in Denali and we had rain about 40% of the time, temps were 30 to 50 degrees F, The previous trip we took there began on 7/4 and the temps were 40 to 75 degrees F had we only had some rain late at night.
I have talked to many people about traveling to Alaska, some say they want to go but are unsure if they will like it for whatever reasons. I have enjoyed every moment we have been there and will go back first chance I get but I have never let cool temps, rain or snow stop me before. We made friends with a family in Fairbanks and stay in touch almost on a daily basis and we have shared our weather conditions each time. So far they have only had about 7 days in Fairbanks that were worse than here in North Mo this winter.
When you go take a long lens and a wide lens at least, my travel methods limited my use of a tripod to near zero which was a shame as the landscapes are endless. Used a monopod with the Sigma 150-500 hours each day.
If you have any more questions feel free to ask and enjoy planning your trip to Alaska. Don't just think about it, DO IT.