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 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.
Skagway boat harbor as seen from our campsite
Waterfalls along the Klondike Highway
Arriving at the Haines ferry dock
Watching for whales in Haines, Alaska
Bald Eagle at Chilcoot Lake State Park, Haines, AK
Haines boat harbor
Loading the Ferry to cross the Yukon River
Poker Creek Alaska
The signposts show other towns named after chickens. Who knew there were so many?
The Pedro Dredge in Chicken is a National Historic Site.
Santa Claus House, North Pole, Alaska
Downtown Talkeetna. We ate at the West Rib Pub for dinner last night
We went really close to Mt. McKinley
Loving every minute of our time on Ruth glacier
Home of author Mary Lovel in Sherman, Alaska
The Alaska Railroad runs right behind our campsite
Such an amazing sight to see their tail
Stellar Sea Lions on day trip to Juneau
Calving on Aialik Glacier one
A pair of Orcas on Columbia Glacier tour from Valdez
There were Puffins in the water
Sea Otters on Columbia Glacier tour from Valdez
Wandering Dawgs at the Arctic Circle
A good look at the Alaska pipeline as it goes underground
Four of these fish are ours!
Mount Redoubt sunset in Ninilchik, Alaska
Anchor Point is the most westerly highway point in North America
Our first moose sighting was this cow by a pond
Lukor liked it on top of his house
Polychrome Overlook, Denali National Park, Alaska
Caribou grazing in Denali National Park
Do you see the profile of a face on the right side of the rock?
Chunk of ice from the Columbia Glacier
Fireweed behind our campsite made the beautiful view even better
Mama bear looking for more fish near Valdez
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
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 crossed the Continental Divide
These purple wildflowers were growing all along the highway
We crossed the Nitsutlin Bay Bridge to the town of Teslin on the other side
These carvings at the Teslin Tlingit Heritage Centre represent the Wolf, Eagle, Frog, Beaver and Raven clans
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?
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.
An old mine on the way to Skagway
On the South Klondike Highway on the way to Skagway
There is still ice on the lake
Over 70 degrees and there is still snow
Back in the U.S.A.!!!!!
Our campsite is in the parking lot at the Skagway Harbor
View from our campsite
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.