Friday, June 22, 2012

Electronic Postcards From Alaska

Postcards are so last century.

I've decided Travel Blogs are the postcards of this century.

Til something better comes along.

Currently I am taking two virtual trips to Alaska, one on land, one on water.

The water trip began in late March, starting in Nanaimo, British Columbia, slowly floating north to Alaska, doing a lot of fishing and catching a lot of fish along the way. I've lost track of how many King Salmon have been caught.

I'll call the boatbound people "The Fishers" because that is sort of their name. I've not asked if it was okay if I shared their blog, so I won't. But I did swipe a cool picture from their latest blog post. That being a humongous moon rising above a snowy mountain. The Fishers currently have made it as far north as Sitka.

I saw The Fishers here in Fort Worth, back in September of 2010. They were passing through town towing a boat they'd bought south of Houston. The boat serves as a transit ship from the mother ship, that being this humongous yacht type vessel The Fishers had built for them at some boat building place down in the Los Angeles zone.

The Fishers having a smaller boat on their bigger boat is the water based equivalent of the Rosie the Rat Dog entourage towing a SUV behind their RV.

Rosie the Rat Dog and her entourage have now made it to Alaska. They successfully ferried across the Yukon River yesterday, entering Alaska.

My sister emailed me pictures, this morning, of the ferry crossing and the Welcome to Alaska sign, among others. But, these pictures have not been blogged yet. Apparently it may be a few days before they are back in an Internet enabled zone.

My sister's description of yesterday's leg of their journey is amusing....

Hey, we survived the ferry crossing today and last night's sunset was the most amazing one I have ever seen! It finally set after 12:45 this morning!  Today's drive was only  187 miles and it took ALL DAY!  The road was dirt and gravel, potholes and gravel, steep slopes and gravel and one grizzly bear!!!!  Not many guard rails along dropoffs, the sort of road that, as a kid, would have had me crying. Right now we are in Tok, Alaska, our phones now work and we may stay here two days to do laundry and to just sit still.

I believe that picture at the top is the sunset my sister is referencing.

My sister's reference to driving a road with steep dropoffs and that type thing causing her to cry as a kid is so true. Dropoffs and a lightning storm would send her into hysterics. I remember the worst steep dropoffs sister hysterics happened on our first trip to Yellowstone National Park. At that point in time Interstate 84 was under construction, that being a much improved road to take vehicles from the Columbia Valley up into the Blue Mountains of Oregon and the Umatilla National Forest, and beyond.

Before the freeway was built, part of the road up into the Blue Mountains, on the route to La Grande and beyond, was called Dead Man's Pass. That name alone was enough to make my sister nervous. The road itself twisted and turned, switchbacking to gain elevation. With very steep dropoffs.

Well, our car overheated. It was a new Chevy Impala and it was prone to overheating when called upon to pull a trailer up a steep hill. My dad had to pull off to the side of the road, right where the dropoff was steep. My brother and I were loving it. My sister not so much. I think it may have been my brother, or it may have been me, who said, we are slipping over the side.

This set my sister off into hysterics. My brother and I found this funny at the time. I vaguely remember we got in some sort of trouble for causing our sister to cry.

Near the summit of Deadman's Pass sits Emigrant Springs State Heritage Area, a state park, where we camped for the night after the ordeal of passing Deadman's Pass. At that point in time you could still see the wagon wheel ruts of the Oregon Trail.

Rosie the Rat Dog's Alaska! Blog is making me want to go on a roadtrip. Not to Alaska though.

I just remembered one more amusing thing in my sister's email that gives you an idea of what wimps Pacific Northwesterners are when it gets just a little bit warm...

Cloudy out right now after a day with the temps over 80 degree's. Right now we are in the motor home with the a/c running, as it is so hot out.

80 degrees? Right now at my location it is 96 with the humidity making it feel like 109.  I also have my a/c running. Whining about the temperature apparently is in my DNA.

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