Glacier Bay Files For Chapter 11, Cancels 2006 Season

October 28, 2005

Glacier Bay Cruiseline, the Seattle-based small-ship operator specializing in soft adventure sailings, has canceled its 2006 sailing season. Its parent and owner, GB Vessel Acquisition LLC, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection; a Chapter 11 filing indicates that a company intends to reorganize.

In a nutshell, Glacier Bay Cruiseline's operations are financed through a credit line, and all funds from the 2005 season are going toward repayment of that credit line. This means funds are not available for payment on other outstanding accounts. The line is looking to charter its vessels to Hurricane Katrina cleanup efforts in hopes of generating funds to pay its vendors and return to business as usual.

"[The 2006 season] has been canceled," Robert Ferguson, vice president of sales and marketing for Great American River Journeys (a sister company to Glacier Bay), told us earlier this week. "Glacier Bay Cruiseline as a company is operating but we are on hold until we find out what's happening with these charters. There is a slight chance of sailing some of the season but for all intensive purposes ... it's canceled." Charter revenue would help Glacier Bay get through the coming year, and also finance needed renovations for its four vessels.

A notice recently posted on Glacier Bay's Web site offers consumers information on the cancellation of the 2006 season and possible post-Katrina relief efforts -- but mentions nothing about the Chapter 11 filing. Booked guests are encouraged to contact Glacier Bay's reservation staff at 800-451-5952 for referrals to other small-ship operators.

Glacier Bay is expecting details of a "new and improved" 2007 sailing season to be available in Spring 2006. You can sign up for e-mail alerts at