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

Weekly Photo Challenge: Scale

The WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge this week is: Scale

During our 2013 RV journey to Alaska we took a day cruise on the M/V Fjordland through the Lynn Canal from Haines, Alaska to Juneau, Alaska.

As we approached the Eldred Rock Lighthouse I took this photo which shows the lighthouse dwarfed by to the mountain.

Eldred Rock Lighthouse in the Lynn Canal in Alaska
Eldred Rock Lighthouse in the Lynn Canal in Alaska

As we got closer we saw a tiny white dot on the top of the tree which turned out to be a Bald Eagle. Now the Bald Eagle is dwarfed by the lighthouse.

Do you see the tiny white dot at the top of the tree?
Do you see the tiny white dot at the top of the tree?

Can you see the Bald Eagle?

Now you can see it's a Bald Eagle
Can you tell it’s a Bald Eagle?

To find out more about our trip through the Lynn Canal click A Day Cruise to Juneau

 

Weekly Photo Challenge: Adventure

The WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge this week is: Adventure

One of the greatest adventures of my life was flying close to the south face of Mt. McKinley and landing on Ruth Glacier when we took a flightseeing tour from Talkeetna, Alaska in the summer of 2013.

Mt. McKinley is in the upper left beneath the clouds
Flying by the south face of Mt. McKinley

Click on over to  Flightseeing adventure  for more about our amazing flight.

 

Relics of the 1890’s Gold Rush

We saw many relics from the Gold Rush of the 1890’s on our 2013 journey through Canada and Alaska.

Dredge # 4
Dredge # 4 in Dawson City, Yukon Territory
Gold Mining Equipment in Chicken, Alaska
Gold Mining Equipment in Chicken, Alaska
Gold Dredge 8 in Fairbanks, Alaska
Gold Dredge 8 in Fairbanks, Alaska
Gold Mining Relics in Fairbanks, Alaska
Gold Mining Relics in Fairbanks, Alaska

We’re not wandering at the moment. These are just a few photos representing relics of the 1890’s Gold Rush in Canada and Alaska.

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Relic

Exactly one year ago: Welcome to Alaska!

Exactly one year ago today we arrived in Skagway, Alaska on the 31st day of our journey from Georgia! We had a wonderful time as we traveled across the U.S. and through Alberta, British Columbia and Yukon but after 31 days we were ready to see Alaska. Here is my original post from Skagway after we finally arrived.

Day 31: Saturday, June 15, 2013. Watson Lake, Yukon to Skagway, Alaska. Pullen Creek RV Park Site 45 overlooking the Skagway Harbor and surrounded by mountains. 320 miles traveled.

I was talking to a fellow traveler at the RV park in Watson Lake before we left there this morning and I commented that this was our 31st day on the road and we still weren’t in Alaska! Our plan for the day was to continue on the Alaska Highway to Whitehorse, Yukon and enter Alaska northwest of there in several days.

It was another beautiful drive on the Alaska Highway with some nice places to stop along the way.

We stopped for lunch at a rest stop. While I was fixing lunch Henry walked over to read an interpretive sign. On the sign was a large map of the area. As we were eating he commented that we weren’t very far from Skagway. We talked about it for a few minutes and he was just as anxious to get to Alaska as I was. We had to make a decision as the turnoff to go to Skagway was in about  six miles. I entered Skagway into the GPS and it was 59 miles to Whitehorse and about 102 miles to Skagway. It was a no brainer. We were going to Skagway.

We left the Alaska Highway and off we went. We were about halfway to Skagway when I realized it was Saturday of Father’s Day weekend. What if all the rv parks were full? There was no cell service and no way to find out until we got there. I read ahead in the Milepost and saw in red letters warning of an 11 mile descent with 11% grade going into Skagway. I told Henry “There’s something coming up you’re not going to like.” There was no turning back.

The drive on the Klondike Highway was spectacular. Snow covered mountains, deep blue ice covered lakes. There were even two bears along the highway. We couldn’t stop to look at anything.

I kept checking my phone for cell service. We had to get AT&T when we got to Skagway, didn’t we?

We finally made it!
We finally made it!

Finally, we stopped for pictures at the Welcome to Alaska sign! We were really here!

We cleared customs with no problem and headed straight for the Pullen Creek RV Park hoping for one of the waterfront sites on the harbor. We asked for 2 nights, maybe 3. He said no problem, go pick one and come back and tell me where you are. After setting up, we were happy to just sit outside and enjoy the view.

Henry says I looked like I was going to cry when I saw AT&T with full bars and 3G come up on my phone. We called our kids and enjoyed the rest of the night.