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.
Pullen Creek RV Park, Skagway, Alaska
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
The free George Black Ferry crosses the Yukon River from Dawson City to Top of the World Highway.
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 on a continuous road system 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
The most exciting and most memorable experience of the entire trip was the South Face McKinley flight-seeing tour and landing on Ruth Glacier with Talkeetna Air Taxi.
We loved all of the boat trips we took.
Driving to the Coldfoot, sixty miles north of the Artic Circle was a drive to remember.
Catching Halibut and watching the sunset in Ninilchik, Alaska.
Denali National Park.
Driving the Top of the World Highway, panning for gold, going for a train ride on the Alaska Railroad, watching for wildlife on the side of the road, seeing the Fireweed blooming everywhere, seeing glaciers off in the distance and up close are all highlights of the trip we will never forget.
Every day was memorable, every day was special, every day we saw something spectacular.
If you are a fan of the show Ice Road Truckers you have heard of the Dalton Highway. If not, the Dalton Highway is the road the truckers take to get to the industrial camp at Prudhoe Bay on the Arctic Ocean. The road begins 84 miles north of Fairbanks and ends 414 miles later in Deadhorse on Prudoe Bay. The road was originally called the Haul Road because all of the supplies for Prudhoe Bay were hauled by truck to get there. The Arctic Circle is about at about milepost 115 on the Dalton Highway.
The highway is mostly dirt and gravel with some paved sections. The road follows the Alaska pipeline and was built because of the pipeline. The scenery changes as you go along from birch and spruce forest to tundra. Purple wildflowers bloomed in many of the fields.
Our first view of the Alaska Pipeline from the highway
This Arctic Circle Trading Post is a long way from the Arctic Circle
We traveled as far as Coldfoot on the Dalton Highway
Road construction for several miles on the Dalton Highway
We traveled behind the motorcycle as we followed behind a pilot truck
As we crossed the Yukon River Bridge we could see the pipeline
The goalpost like bars are called Headache Bars to keep tall vehicles from having access to the pipeline
The Bureau of Land Managment manages a small campground and picnic area at the Arctic Circle. When we arrived two young women from the visitor’s center in Coldfoot were set up under a tent with mosquito netting. After having our pictures made, we received a certificate for crossing the Arctic Circle! We ate lunch there and decided to continue on to the Visitor’s Center at Coldfoot, another 60 miles north.
Signpost at the Arctic Circle on the Dalton Highway, Alaska
The Arctic Circle on the Dalton Highway in Alaska
Dalton Highway, Alaska
The farthest north we traveled was the Arctic Interagency Visitor Center in Coldfoot, Alaska
The visitor’s center had a lot of interesting displays including a display showing the location of the Arctic Circle all around the world. At the Arctic Circle we were farther north than Moscow, Helsinki, and Stockholm. For both of us we were farther north than we had ever been in our lives.
By the time we finished at the visitor’s center we had been gone from our campground for 7 1/2 hours and had to drive all the way back. With so many miles to go, we only stopped a couple of times on the way home.
A moose sighting on the way back
A good look at the Alaska pipeline as it goes underground
View from the highway
It started raining on a dirt portion of the road when we were almost at the end of the Dalton Highway. Henry said driving on the wet dirt road was the worst driving he has had to do this whole trip. When we got back to Fairbanks, we had to stop for road construction at 9:00 at night. Fourteen hours after leaving the campground, we arrived home and collapsed into our chairs. A long day but well worth it.