- 12 guests
- year built
- 65 feet
Meticulously fitted to combine the finest blend of Alaskan hospitality, comfort and utility, the 65-foot classic Alaska working yacht Discovery gently sails her guests into one of the world’s richest marine environments. Named after one of Captain Cook’s ships, the 12-guest Discovery maintains an atmosphere of charm and style. Its small size allows for up-close exploration of quiet coves, ice-filled channels, glaciers, whales and wildlife.
AdventureSmith Explorations’ Discovery review includes a detailed description of the small ship including deck plans and a photo gallery. Our Alaska experts have been aboard the Discovery firsthand. Please read our Discovery review below below then contact our experts to compare the Discovery with other small ships to Alaska offering small ship Alaska cruises and private Alaska yacht charters.
Choose the Discovery for a family-run, eco-friendly, intimate voyage with up-close exploration through Prince William Sound’s glacier and fjords. Unlike the cumbersome cruise ship giants, the Discovery’s size enables access to Alaska’s lesser traveled, more intimate inside passages and is able to have a flexible itinerary to take advantage of weather, wildlife and unplanned discoveries. Being well-equipped for travel in Alaska’s wilderness, the Discovery safely travels the Sound’s remote waterways. Powered by twin diesel engines and two generators, safe travel and reliable electrical power are ensured.
Common Areas Aboard Discovery
The Discovery’s traditional design maximizes use of the interior space. The bright upper deck salon offers settees, couches and tables. This lounge is surrounded by large windows, creating a magnificent natural dinner theater, as well as an indoor place for relaxation and scenic viewing. Another sitting area is located on the lower deck. The complete wrap-around open deck and open bow deck offer multiple opportunities for wildlife viewing and fresh air. The pilot house is open for interaction with captain and crew. Smoking is not permitted aboard Discovery.
In 1958 the Discovery launched into the St John River and was christened the Anna Jackman. She worked her way through the Panama Canal and up through the West Coast to Juneau, Alaska. Commissioned to be built by the Presbyterian Church of New York for a fourth-generation Presbyterian mission vessel designed for service in Alaska, she became the link between small coastal Native Alaskan villages and the rest of the world.
The Discovery was designed by the Seattle naval architect Edwin Monk, known for his exceptional, no-nonsense Pacific Northwest work boats. The Discovery was designed to move through the water as efficiently as possible. To keep her seaworthy in Alaska’s often stormy conditions, the hull has a deep draft with a displacement of 60 tons. The Discovery was constructed of very thick steel for her size, making her a hearty vessel in Alaska’s waters.
In 1983 she changed hands and was renamed Discovery. Captain Rand of Discovery Voyages upgraded the small ship’s engines in 2008. The replacement engines are rebuilt modern versions of the same efficient, reliable model that was used in the vessel for the first 50 years.
Sustainability Aboard Discovery
The Discovery’s crew believes in a sensitive and respectful interaction with the environment and is acknowledged as a leader in sustainable ecotourism. The staff was awarded the Adventure Green Alaska (AGA) Gold Certificate for meeting the highest standards of economic, social and environmental sustainability by the Alaska Wilderness Recreation & Tourism Association. The Discovery’s carbon offset program provides an opportunity to contribute to a clean and renewable energy project’s fund managed by Native Energy. Discovery’s staff also encourages guests to participate in “4 Dollars a Day for Alaska Conservation,“ a volunteer donation program where guests elect to donate $4 for each day spent aboard Discovery to local Alaskan organizations promoting sustainability. Additionally, some of Discovery’s proceeds are donated to political organizations and individual candidates who support responsible long-term stewardship of Alaska’s wild places and resources.
Dining Aboard Discovery
A tantalizing menu of carefully prepared, home-cooked meals are served aboard the Discovery. Depending on the season, meals feature fresh local seafood such as Copper River king salmon, sockeye salmon, halibut, oysters, shrimp and rockfish. These are served with fresh, quality vegetables (organic when possible); homemade breads and rolls; soups and fruit. Breakfasts are hearty and healthy, lunches warm and light, afternoon snacks are fresh cookies or what may be found in the galley and dinners are varied and delicious, highlighting Alaska’s incredible seafood. It is possible that dinner will even be caught off the stern that day. Days usually end with a fresh-made sweet treat. Complimentary beverages include fine wines and premium beer.
Crew & Guides Aboard Discovery
In addition to being captains, Dean and Megan are also the owners and operators of the Discovery, ensuring full commitment to professionalism, enthusiasm and creation of an intimate, fun experience for guests. Also aboard are two knowledgeable naturalists and experienced guides that round out the Discovery crew, helping to accommodate varying guests’ interests and activity levels.
Activities Aboard Discovery
The Discovery carries two large, outboard-powered, inflatable Zodiacs used for shore visits. For kayak excursions, single and double kayaks are stored on board. Rain gear, boots, hiking poles, gloves and binoculars are included on Discovery voyages.
Cabins & Deck Plan Aboard Discovery
Sleeping quarters are practical, comfortable and private. The Discovery offers accommodations for up to 12 guests in 6 cabins, plus crew quarters. There are two shared bathrooms on the lower deck with hot showers and storage space. Each cabin has an upper and lower single berth, small closet and drawers.