Yes, it is really expensive for what is a pretty bare bones cruise. I don't necessarily begrudge small operators the money they make; perhaps their passenger revenues subsidize some of their freight operations.
Yeah, that would be a neat trip to go on.....so the rich can get away from the tough life of the City and business world.
I would suggest taking a similar trip on the "Uchuck III", providing service in Nootka Sound. It even stops by an old town I used to live in, Tahsis BC. Which is pretty much a town that was deserted because the Sawmill shutdown. So the Americans come up and rent the houses, so they can take their yaght out, and go fishing in Nootka Sound.
The rates for this taking a ride on this ship, are alot more affordable, and probably just as neat as the Aurora-Explorer.
I used to work for this company, but never served on the Explorer.
The crew all say that it is a great trip and lost of fun. The price is very steep and does stablize the freight.... The freight buisness is very jumpy with the softwood disputes But it is a good company and would be a great trip. the only downside is that the boat is old, loud and has a terrible motion in a sea ( most of the trip is in protected water)