Life's Journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, totally worn out, shouting "Wow...What a Ride!"

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

61 Day Alaska Caravan: Day 46-48

August 26-28, 2016

Day 46

Today's drive was 207 miles through some amazing scenery.

Being one of the first (as usual) to arrive at the park we got our choice of sites, we chose site 11. Bear Paw Adult Campground is located along the harbor, the views out our back window were great.

Our short travel meeting was followed by a small cookout with 8 of our new friends, good food and good friends, throw in some adult beverages and we all had a great time.

Our crazy photographer

Bunnies abound in this campground

Day 47

Today was a free day in Valdez, we decided to check out a few places in town.On Good Friday 1964 Valdez was hit by 9+ earthquake that wiped out the town. It has since rebuilt itself  a few miles down the road.

This is what the old town looks like today.

We then took a ride along Dayville Rd which is on the opposite side of the harbor. All along the road folks were fishing and salmon were spawning.

One of the recipients of all the spawning salmon.

Found another great seafood market, Peter Pan Company, now our freezer is more than stocked. 
Day 48

Out the door early (8am) so we can get good seats for our Prince William Sound cruise. The weather was great and the waters were calm, Dave was able to enjoy the day with out any medication.

So glad Dave was able to enjoy this cruise. 

Orca whales, none ever came completely out of the water just came up for air and down again they went. We also caught glimpses of  humpback whales, small spouts of water but no breaching or surfacing, no pictures.

Icebergs from the Columbia Glacier

Thought this one looked like a porpoise or dolphin

Meares Glacier, while we never saw any real calving we did hear lot of cracking

An amazing day experiencing nature's beauty, words can't do it justice.

Starting tomorrow we have 3 travel days, tomorrow night we're back in Tok.

Until next time...

Monday, August 29, 2016

61 Day Alaska Caravan: Day 44-45

August 24-25, 2016

Day 44

Today we traveled 167 miles, much of it on roads we've traveled in the other direction. We arrived Mountain View RV Park in Palmer AK shortly after noon, we were the first of our group to arrive after the wagon masters. We got set up and soon after the rest of the group started coming in. A travel meeting and then off to check out a local brewery, that shouldn't be surprise anymore. If there's a brewery nearby it will be found, Dave has found some kindred souls in beer tasting.

Day 45

Today we explored Palmer AK, our first stop was the Colony House Museum. As part of Roosevelt's New Deal Resettlement program in 1935 204 families from MN, WI and MI were moved to what is now Palmer AK. Prior to their arrival transient workers were sent ahead, they were the ones who built the homes and buildings of the town. For more information you can click here.
I guess Dave didn't take any pictures of the house since I can't find any in my photos, he did get a few photos of photos from when the colonists were staying in tents while awaiting their homes.

Our afternoon tour was at the local Musk Ox farm, the farm is dedicated to the domestication of the musk ox. Musk Ox are an Ice Age mammal that have roamed here since the time of the saber tooth tigers and woolly mammoths. They are prized for their wool coat called Qiviut which is eight times warmer than wool and softer than cashmere. It is valued at $90 an ounce and is collected by hand combing.

Tomorrow we head to Valdez a 260 mile ride, suppose to be some rough roads and the expected travel time is 6 hours. An early night tonight for sure, we hope to be on the road about 7am.

Until next time...

Thursday, August 25, 2016

61 Day Alaska Caravan: Day 40-43

August 20-23, 2016

Day 40

Today our travel day took us to Seward AK, a 163 mile ride much of which was backtracking of our drive to Homer.

Our campground for 3 nights is a few miles north of Seward, Stoney Creek RV Park. All things considered better than some sites we've had, at least it's not a 90* site, it's a nice angled pull thru with a decent size yard.

After getting set up while the weather held we headed into Seward to check out the waterfront.

After our travel meeting we talked our friends Mike & Liz into checking out one place in town before calling it a day.

Day 41

Today started early, at 7:40 we were on our way to the Alaska Sealife Center. After the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill it was realized there was no place to help rehabilitate the affected sea life. With money from Exxon the Alaska Sealife Center was created.

In the afternoon we headed over to Seavey's Ididaride Dog Sled Tours. The Seavey name is well known in the Ididarod circles, a few generations of Seavey's have won the race. In Seward they give rides with their younger dogs pulling "sleds",  you then have a chance to see and hold some of the puppies and they end the tour with a talk about the Ididarod race and what is involved. The first Ididarod race took place in 1973 and took just over 20 days. The 2016 winner, Dallas Seavey, finished in 8 days, 11 hours, 20 minutes, and 16 seconds. You can read more about the history of the race here.

That evening we went out to a local restaurant "Chinooks" that had been recommended to us. Had the best halibut fish and chips of the trip so far, if you ever find yourself in Seward we highly recommend Chinooks.

We were entertained by this sea otter during dinner.

Day 42

A late morning bus ride to the Kenai Fjords NP Visitors Center and then the boarding of the cruise ship. With the yucky rainy weather it was a tough day for seeing much of anything. Dave would later describe this cruise as the cruise from hell as his motion sickness got the best of him. When I heard the captain announce she was going to take the ship out into the Gulf of Alaska for a peak I knew Dave was wanting to kill someone. Needless to say our 5 hour cruise seemed like an eternity to him as he spent much of it outside in the cold windy rain just trying to keep from tossing his cookies. He did manage to get a few decent pictures though he has no recollection of taking them.

Day 43

This morning started with an adventure at Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures where we went zip lining, rappelling and crossed 3 suspension bridges. Our tour guides Matt and Rob made this a fun experience for all of us.

To top the day off we learned through our driver to Stoney Creek Canopy Adventures of a place, JR Fisheries, to get fresh frozen fish at a decent price. Our freezer is now stocked with halibut, salmon, a little rockfish and a little bit of shrimp. Mona Liza there will be salmon for dinner at Lake Louise just no salmon heads though.

We didn't make it to Exit Glacier as the weather never cooperated when we had the time, oh well some things must be left till our next trip to Alaska.

Until next time...