Why Settle For Lemonade?

Category: North To Alaska

Hagwilget Canyon Bridge, and K’san Village

August 4th, 2015 – New Hazelton BC – Prior to this trip the furthest north I had ventured was on an Order of the Arrow road trip in 1978.  We went as far as Prince Rupert, exposing ourselves to Native culture along the way.  Today I revisited two icons from that trip, the Hagwilget Canyon Bridge, and……


Stewart – Hyder

August 3, 2015 – Stewart BC, Hyder AK –  The “Glacier Highway” 37a is a side trip from the Cassiar leading to Stewart BC, and on a couple of miles to tiny settlement of Hyder Alaska.  Hyder is home to one of the few places where bear viewing isn’t a float plane or boat trip……


Boya Lake Paddle

August 2nd, 2015 – Boya Lake, BC – The white marl bottom gives the impression of a swimming pool, while the interlocking depressions that form the lake provide plenty of shoreline to explore.  Beaver dams and lodges, a variety of birds, flowers and trees.  Against a backdrop of varied dramatic weather.


Cassiar Highway

August 1st, 2015 – Cassiar Highway, BC – The road less traveled, this alternate is shorter, but not as fast, straight or smooth.  I spotted rabbits, Stone Sheep, Coyotes and black bears.  This route provided access to Boya Lake for a nice paddle, and Stewart/Hyder for Glaciers and more bears.


Ships passing in the Night

July 28, 2015 – Haines Alaska – Of all the posts I wrote and lost, this is the hardest to faithfully recreate.  An incredible series of events lead to a several decade reunion of old scouting friends in a most unlikely place far from either of our homes.  A couple of hours of action packed……


Million Dollar Falls

July 28, 2015 – Haines Highway, Yukon Territory, CanadaMillion Dollar Falls. Let the thunder of the torrent shake your thoughts quiet as the green glassy water mixes with air and froths, a fluid transition, frozen in this one place.  Always just here, yet never the same river.

This was a stop that once again……


Chilkat Pass (Haines Highway)

July 28, 2015 – Chilkat Pass, Haines Highway (YT, BC, AK) – The road out to Haines on the coast rises through the coastal mountains through 3510′ high Chilkat Pass.  On the way to Haines the rain was so heavy that I decided to pull off and take a nap.  On the way back I had……


To Kluane Lake

July 27, 2015 – Alaska Highway, Kluane Lake Yukon Territory – Remember that low tire from ten days ago?  Its back.  The tire and a border crossing made this a long day, but it was only five hours of driving.  Spotted a coyote along the road and another variety of “cotton grass”.

I woke up, made……


Yarger Lake – Paddle

July 26, 2015 – Yarger Lake, Alaska (Near Northway) – Finally the canoe hits the water.  Gave some fellow travelers a few pointers on paddling, then wandered the lake becoming a slow moving nuisance to the birds in residence.  This is away from the mountains back on the flat interior, so huge and dramatic skies……


Wrangell-St.Elias National Park

July 26, 2015 – Wrangell-St.Elias National Park and Preserve, Alaska – The biggest park you’ve never heard of, big, scenic and wild.  “At 13.2 Million acres, it’s the same size as Yellowstone Nat.Park, Yosemite Nat. Park, and Switzerland combined!”  Primarily wilderness there are only two roads of any significance totaling only 100 miles.  I got……


Matanuska Glacier

July 24, 2015 – Matanuska Glacier, Alaska – Last night I drove out of Anchorage through Palmer and up the Glenn Highway a bit.  I parked the trailer in a big pullout and got a good night’s sleep.  I’m on my way south now, and I’ve planned this part quite as well.  Traveling along the……


Prince William Sound

July 21, 2015 – Whittier Alaska, Prince William Sound – Boat tour on Prince William Sound today where Glaciers and waterfalls graced the steep mountain sides and wide open waters were adrift with sea otters.  We watched a whale, many sea lions, and even spotted a couple of mountain goats.  The sky was a bit……


Portage Valley and Whittier Tunnel

July 21, 2015 – Portage Valley, Alaska – Several visits and stays here as I came and went.  The portage valley extends down from Portage Glacier to Turnagain arm right near the neck of the Kenai Peninsula.  Under the mountain at the top of the valley runs a car/railroad tunnel to Whittier perched on the……


Homer

July 20, 2015 – Seward to Homer – A long day trip from Seward……


Kenai Fjords National Park

July 19, 2015 – Seward Alaska – Day trip by boat into Kenai Fjords National Park out of Seward Alaska.  This is a photo heavy post. One-in-a-million day, amazing skies, perfect temperature, calm water, lots of wildlife.  Whales, Orcas, Dolphins, Sea Lions, Fur Seals, Harbor Seals, Sea Otters, Puffins, Guillemots/Murres, Kittiwakes, Bald Eagles were all……


Exit Glacier

July 18, 2015 – Exit Glacier, Alaska – Easy day hike to Exit Glacier in Kenai Fjords National Park.  Bright blue sky contrasted with lush green vegetation and recently scoured bedrock.  Sparkling water and blue/white ice under the bright sun.


Wrong Turn Nets Sheep

July 14, 2015 – Turnagain Arm, Alaska – I somewhat randomly turned right instead of left and ended up with a pretty close encounter with a group of Dall Sheep above the highway.  Not a particularly rare event, but one that I had really hoped for.


Bore Tide

July 15, 2015 – Turnagain Arm, Alaska – Today I watched people surf the wave of a tidal bore.  This wave forms in Turnagain arm when a tall tide is coming in, and today had been forecast to be pretty good.  That meant there were plenty of folks in wet suits waiting all along……


Turnagain Arm

July 14-23, 2015 – Turnagain Arm, Alaska – South out of Anchorage is an amazing drive along Turnagain arm.  Highlights also include train watching, a side trip to see the Alyeska Hotel (and ski area), and Bird Point.  This is the gateway to the Kenai Peninsula, so Seward, Whittier, Homer et al.  It is home……


Potter Marsh

July 17, 2015 – Potter Marsh, Anchorage Alaska – The Potter Marsh wildlife refuge is right at the southern edge of Anchorage as you head out the highway to Turnagain Arm.  The marsh was created during the construction of the Alaska Railroad.  Very nice raised boardwalks and viewing platforms keep the viewers up and away……


Around Anchorage

July 12-23, 2015 – Anchorage Alaska – A side trip to a trailhead above Anchorage, and to Earthquake Park.  Sampling food around town while I took care of some errands, including a couple of visits to Moose’s Tooth for great pizza.  I spent several days in Anchorage and passed back through a couple of times……


Parks Highway

July 10-12, 2015 – George Parks Highway, Alaska –  This post is about the highway that connects Fairbanks and Anchorage passing through Denali National Park.  Some construction, a couple of nights in pullouts along the road, views of the Denali range from the south, a quick pass through Talkeetna and a flat tire.  Adventures along……


Denali Tundra Tour

July 10, 2015 – Denali National Park – Alpine Tundra Wilderness Tour by bus.  Beautiful rugged wilderness, not flat like the Arctic Tundra, so pretty well drained although the ground is frozen.  We spotted Moose, Caribou, Dall Sheep, and a far off Grizzly Bear.  Great day, you could do this tour over and again and……


Denali on Foot

July 10, 2015 – Fairbanks to Denali National Park –  A nice hike in Denali National Park along a river with a couple of nice bridges.  Turned around after seeing a couple bear prints in the mud and hiked a while with a young man who didn’t speak much English.  Found a spot along the……


Denali Train

July 6,……


Dalton Under the Midnight Sun

July 1st, 2015 – Dalton Highway, Alaska – 24 hours, 800 miles, mostly on gravel, under the midnight sun.  Forest gave way to Tundra.  In every direction wilderness.  Never dark, the sun just circling the sky.  A wide gravel road, extra ordinary road conditions, very light traffic.  I saw moose, rabbits, several hawks, a fox……


Pump House Restaurant

July 3, 2015 – Fairbanks, Alaska – Funny thing about the sun being up all day, it gets late and you find yourself chasing the closing times of businesses.  I had been going……


Around Fairbanks

June 30 – July 10 – Fairbanks, AK – The grand hospitality of my high school friend Duncan and his wife Reanne made this stop in Fairbanks a highlight of exploration and unwinding.  A highlight was the laid back fourth of July celebration and getting caught up on decades of time passed. Having a friendly……


North End of the Alaska Highway

June 29, 2015 – Chicken to Quartz Lake, Alaska – From Chicken I headed along the Taylor highway back to the Alaska Highway and North towards Fairbanks.  Wide vistas, some good pizza, an informative pull out along the Tanana river, end of the original Alaska Highway, a nice campground in the forest and my first……


Chicken, Alaska

June 28, 2015 – Yukon/Alaska Border to Chicken Alaska – The crossing into Alaska was simple and the officer was quite pleasant.  Smooth fresh asphalt for the next ten miles along the rest……


Top of the World Highway

June 28, 2015 – Dawson City to Alaska Border – First order of business cross the Yukon, then up into the alpine meadows and along the ridges to the Alaska border.  This is……


Backroads Behind Dawson City

June 26, 2015 – Klondike Area, Yukon Territory – I heard today would be wet and rainy, and I knew that my next day heading north was unpaved and noted for sweeping views.  So I arranged to stay a third night in Dawson City and spent the afternoon driving the dirt mining roads to the south……


Early 1900’s Dredge Mining

June 25-26, 2015 – Klondike Area, Yukon Territory – Prospecting with a pan or a sluice started the rush, but this soon gave way to consolidation of claims and industrialization.  The king of the industrial mining machines was the gold dredge.  The dredge of wood and iron is a testament to engineering of the early……


Dawson City

June 26-27 – Dawson City, Yukon Territory – Two days in Dawson City allowed me to do some wandering on foot and by vehicle, taste a bit of the local fare and relax a bit.  Downtown was only a few blocks away, with historic buildings along the route, and the waterfront is nicely developed for walking……


The Klondike Trail

June 25, 2015 – Whitehorse to Dawson City YT – I’ve decided to take a long detour away from the Alaska highway to follow some history.  I will head north along the Yukon river to the confluence with the Klondike river and Dawson City.  Along the way I’ll stop at Lake Laberge, slog through……


A New Territory

June 23 – Fort Nelson to Watson Lake – Out of British Columbia and into Yukon Territory.  That’s one more for the checklist of states and provinces and territories.  Today’s highlights include……


Mile Zero to Fort Nelson

June 22, 2015 – Dawson Creek to Fort Nelson –  Today’s lesson, keep your tank filled when there are fewer gas stations, more on that later.  Mileposts were historically very significant along the……


A Sunday Drive To Mile Zero

June 21, 2015 – Prince George to Dawson Creek –  Pushing north as I was, I found that driving past so many little side roads was starting to wear on me.  So at one of the many blue “Wildlife Viewing” signs I just took a left turn.  This resulted in a wonderful little side trip……


Along the Fraser River

June 20, 2015 – Chilliwack to Prince George today.  The Fraser river is deep in its gorge and the road blasted into the wall.  The window is open and the sound of the dry smooth road beckons me onward.  The morning clouds have been replaced by a blue sky and the temperature is warm……


Acclimation Day

June 19, 2015 – Today will be a day of research and discovery, acclimation to the equipment, and to Canada.  This is one of those days that is chock full of little stories.  The take-away?  I stayed in Chilliwack the whole day doing stuff, and went back to Wal*mart for another night of free lodging.

On……