Friday, June 14, 2013

A different kind of Alaska

I've been to Alaska a few times over the years but hadn't done much other then get flown into glaciers to climb a peak.  I had been wanting to go with my Dad and check out some other parts of Alaska for quite some time.  Finally we made it up there in early June.

Day 1: We met in Denver and flew up to Anchorage.  Got the rental car, found the hotel, ate some food and went to bed.

Day 2: We started out the day by driving to the Matanuska Glacier and hiking around on the toe of it.  I had done this on my first trip with John in 2004 and had a great time.

We then drove up to Talkeetna and took a scenic flight around Denali (aka Mt. McKinley aka North Americas tallest peak at 20,320'), which required oxygen masks since we were not in a pressurized plane.

Day 3: We woke up in Talkeetna and drove back to Anchorage to take a hike at Flattop Peak, before continuing South to Homer.

Day 4: Woke up in Homer and headed out on a fishing boat to look for Halibut.  We caught quite a few unfortunately we were only able to keep two each.  Once back on dry land I was able to catch up with Jesse Kirby who is a friend from Durango that has moved to Homer.

Day 5: Woke early and drove to Seward to take a scenic boat trip.  On which we saw, a breaching Humpback Whale, a pod of Orca, two Mountain Goats, two Black Bears, Horned and Tufted Puffins, Bald Eagles, Sea Lions, Sea Otters, Dall's Porpoise, and Harbor Seals in addition to some glaciers.  After that we drove up to Whittier and spent the night.  Whittier is a tiny port town that is separated from the rest of Alaska by a tunnel 2.5 miles long that "is the second longest highway tunnel, and longest combined rail and highway tunnel, in North America".   It's pretty cool.

Day 6: Woke in Whittier and decided to to drive back North because the weather down South was getting bad and the weather on the North side of Denali was clear.  We got to Denali National Park with stiff legs and needing to walk around.  We chose a hike on the flanks of Mt. Healy because it was the only trail that said "strenuous" on the sign.  It turned out to be walking up a steep creek for most of the way.  But it was good to get out of the car.

Day 7: Woke and drove back toward Anchorage seeing two Caribu along the way and stopping at Hatcher Pass.  Unfortunately we discovered it was not open for the season yet.  We finished the drive to Anchorage and watched "After Earth" at a theater, which was a little weak.  Then headed for the airport to catch our flights back home.  All total we drove about 1,600 miles and saw 4 Caribu and 15 Moose.

Hatcher Pass

Great trip!  Super fun time hanging out with my dad!

1 comment:

  1. That sounds like a really amazing trip! I really like the way you