Lens-Artists #65: Pick a Place

This week, Tina has challenged us to capture the spirit of a place that is vivid in you memory.

My husband and I have been fortunate to be able to travel to most of the United States, parts of Canada, and a few other foreign countries. The one place that I think of most often is the state of Alaska.

It’s been six years since we towed our fifth wheel over 14,000 miles to Alaska and back. There are so many things that make Alaska memorable. The people are friendly and proud of their state. The mountains and glaciers took my breath away every where we went. I was constantly on the lookout for wildlife and often saw bears or moose beside the road. Sometimes we would be the only vehicle on the road for miles.

One of our favorite towns was Haines. We loved all the great people, the Hammer Museum, eagles and bears, and fresh Dungeness Crab for dinner. Probably best of all was the waterfront view from the campground. We enjoyed our cocktail hour searching for whales and watching the ships go by.

It's only raining to the left
View from our campground in Haines

As we traveled around Alaska we would sometimes drive for miles without seeing another car. I was constantly on the looking for bears and moose.

Beautiful view along the highway
Gorgeous scenery every where we went
20130714Day-60Talkeetna-to-Wasilla-(5)
Moose cow and calf crossing the road

One of our most memorable days was the day we left the fifth wheel in the RV park in North Pole and drove north on the Dalton Highway. After stopping at the Arctic Circle we continued on to Coldfoot, the farthest north we have ever traveled. At Coldfoot we turned around and arrived back at the camper after 10:00 pm and it was still daylight.

We traveled behind the motorcycle as we followed behind a pilot truck
Behind a motorcycle on the Dalton Highway

On a wildlife cruise from Seward, the captain turned off the engines so we could hear the ice calving at Aialik Glacier.

Calving on Aialik Glacier
Ice calving on Aialik Glacier on the Kenai Fjords trip from Seward

One of my favorite things in Alaska was seeing wildlife.

I’ll never forget the Orcas cruising close by our boat on a wildlife cruise from Valdez.

Pair of Orcas on Columbia Glacier tour from Valdez
A pair of Orcas on Columbia Glacier tour from Valdez

The mama bear was too busy finding fish for her cub to pay attention to us.

Mama bear looking for more fish
Mama bear looking for more fish near Valdez
Black Bear Cub
Black Bear Cub

There were more bald eagles in Alaska than anywhere else I’ve ever been. As we rode close to the shoreline on one of the wildlife cruises there were too many eagles perched in the trees to count.

Pair of Eagles
We spotted this pair of Bald Eagles as we cruised by on a wildlife and glacier cruise from Valdez
Eagle soaring over bluff at Russian Orthadox Church
Eagle soaring over bluff at Russian Orthadox Church in Ninilchik

Riding on a train and a taking a plane ride to land on a glacier after seeing Mount Denali up close were two of our favorite excursions.

Going down the tracks
A ride on the Alaska Railroad to the Hurricane Turn
We went really close to Mt. McKinley
Mount Denali from the air

It’s been over six years since we were there. One day we will return…

Many thanks to Tina for this weeks Lens-Artists Photo Challenge – Pick a Place

 

Throwback Thursday – August 1, 2013

I originally started the Wandering Dawgs blog as a way to keep friends and family updated as we traveled from Georgia to Alaska in 2013. Six years later, the blog is still going strong. We’re not traveling as much in our RV anymore so I thought it would be fun to relive some of our most memorable days from previous RV trips.

On this day six years ago, August 1, 2013, we were nearing the end of our stay in Alaska. That day, we drove from Glacier View, Alaska, to Valdez, our last major Alaska destination. I remember that drive was one of the most spectacular drives of our Alaska journey.

There were mountains and glaciers along the way.

20130801Day-78Glacier-View-to-Valdez-(4)
On to drive to Valdez
Mantanuska Glacier
Mantanuska Glacier on the Glenn Highway
We could see Worthington Glacier from the highway about 30 miles from Valdez
We could see Worthington Glacier from the highway about 30 miles from Valdez

We had lunch with a view.

We had lunch at Willow Lake with a view of Mount Wrangell
We had lunch at Willow Lake with a view of Mount Wrangell
Welcome to Valdez
Welcome to Valdez

As we got close to Valdez we descended a long steep grade through Keystone Canyon and saw jaw dropping scenery as we drove by. We couldn’t stop while towing the fifth wheel so I took these waterfall phtotos the next day when we drove back up the highway for a closer look.

Bridal Veil Falls in Keystone Canyon
Bridal Veil Falls in Keystone Canyon
Horsetail Falls waterfall in Keystone Canyon
Horsetail Falls waterfall in Keystone Canyon

Our four days in Valdez were a great way to end our Alaska adventure before we began our return trip to Georgia.

To read more about that day, visit my original Wandering Dawgs post at Beautiful Drive to Valdez

 

 

Bald Eagles of Alaska

Five years ago we were wandering around Alaska in our RV. As we traveled I was always on the lookout for wildlife and we saw plenty of it.

Along with the many land and sea animals, I enjoyed seeing the birds. The Bald Eagles were my favorite and there were more Bald Eagles than I’ve ever seen anywhere else. We saw them perched in trees, soaring overhead, and even in a nest in front of the Homer Post office.  The most unusual sighting was seeing one fly right beside the truck as we drove along the Homer Spit. I was so busy watching him keep up with us that I didn’t get a chance to take his picture!

He was looking at me
Bald Eagle on Ninilchik Beach
Bald Eagle at Chilcoot Lake State Park, Haines, AK
Bald Eagle at Chilcoot Lake State Park, Haines, AK
Bald Eagle at Chilcoot Lake State Park, Haines, AK
Bald Eagle at Chilcoot Lake State Park, Haines, AK
20130621Day-37Fjordland-to-Juneau-(177)
Bald Eagle in the Lynn Canal between Haines and Juneau
20130621Day-37Scale-Eagle
Bald Eagle in tree beside Eldred Rock Lighthouse in the Lynn Canal
Mama and Baby Eagles across from Homer Post Office
Mama and Baby Eagles in Homer
Eagle soaring over bluff at Russian Orthadox Church
Eagle soaring over bluff at Russian Orthadox Church in Ninilchik
Pair of Eagles
We spotted this pair of Bald Eagles as we cruised by on a wildlife and glacier cruise from Valdez

Inspired by Ingrid’s Wandering Wednesday photo prompt – birds

Favorite Alaska and Canada Wildlife Photos

Five years ago this week we were on the road to Alaska from Georgia. Once we crossed the border into Canada, I spent every day looking for wildlife. There were many “WOW” wildlife sightings in both Canada and Alaska.

I’ve been thinking about posting some of my favorite wildlife photos from the trip and today I finally got the boost I needed to put it all together. When my friend Ingrid at Live, Laugh RV posted that the theme for her very first Wednesday photo inspiration was wildlife, I immediately started going though the thousands of photos from the trip.

If you would like to participate or see other posts inspired by Ingrid, click on over to Ingrid’s post Wandering Wednesday.

Here are just a few of my favorite wildlife photos from our Canada and Alaska adventure.

Elk in loop 63
Elk near our campsite in Jasper National Park, Alberta
Bear in British Columbia
Soon after entering British Columbia we were in Mount Robson Park and saw this grizzly beside the road
Black Bear eating Dandelions
Bear in British Columbia
A small herd with calves
Bison herd with calves near Liard River Hotsprings in British Columbia
20130709Day-55Tek-to-Kantishna-(337)
Moose in Denali National Park, Alaska
Black Bear Cub
Black Bear Cub in Valdez, Alaska
Stellar Sea Lions on day trip to Juneau
Stellar Sea Lions on wildlife cruise from Haines to Juneau, Alaska
Whale Tail
Humpback Whale on wildlife cruise from Haines to Juneau, Alaska
Two Sea Otters Valdez
Sea Otters on Columbia Glacier cruise from Valdez, Alaska
Pod of Orcas with calf
Pod of Orcas with calf on Columbia Glacier cruise from Valdez, Alaska
He was looking at me
Eagle at Deep Creek Beach, Alaska
Pair of Eagles
Pair of Eagles on Columbia Glacier Cruise from Valdez, Alaska
Puffins
Puffins on the Columbia Glacier Cruise from Valdez, Alaska

 

 

 

Wandering Around America one state at a time – Alaska

State 2:

Welcome to the next post in my series highlighting states we have visited throughout the years. I hope you will enjoy coming along for the ride! I will be featuring the states alphabetically and next up is

Alaska

Alaska became the 49th state on January 3, 1959. The capital is Juneau and it is the only state capital that can only be reached by air, boat, or birth. The largest city is Anchorage.

We spent 50 glorious nights in Alaska in the summer of 2013.

I loved meeting so many wonderful Alaskans and hearing their stories. Wildlife, glaciers, boat trips, a flight seeing tour, eagles, halibut fishing, Denali National Park, taking the RV on the Alaska Ferry from Skagway to Haines, and a train ride on the Alaska Railroad are just a few of the amazing things we experienced while we were there. Our favorite place was Haines. The most exciting thing we did was take a flight-seeing tour from Talkeetna to see Mt. McKinley and land on Ruth Glacier. The farthest north we went was Coldfoot, north of the Arctic Circle.

Every day was memorable, every day was special, every day we saw something spectacular. Was it worth driving over 14,000 there and back? Absolutely!

To read previous posts about the states featured in this series just click on the state name: Alabama