Joe Has Been Here !!!!

I know, I’ve been gone a while.  I didn’t plan to be, it just kind of happened.  I have had a visitor in my home, I never saw him but I just know he was here; I could feel his presence.

A few of you may remember him but most of you, I am positive, never heard of him.

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Allow me to introduce Joe Btfsplk, the proper pronunciation is to extend the tongue between the lips and blow.  He was a product of Al Capp’s imagination and appeared from time to time in the Li’l Abner comic strip.  Nothing good ever happened when Joe was around, he jinxed everything and everyone he came in contact with.

Yes, I could have written about the untimely car repairs but I didn’t have the talent to make that interesting or entertaining.

I could have told you that I have spent more time with my doctor than I have with the wait staff at my favorite restaurant and I eat out a lot.  I think we have those issues headed in the right direction.

I could have written about the Roto Rooter guys visiting during the height of an intestinal disorder, and their estimate somewhere north of 5K to really fix the problem.

I could have shared the details of the two hour drive home from the lake with the severe kidney infection.  Just a simple “thank you” for not sharing will suffice.

I could have given you a detailed report on the death of my trusty old computer: the one I blogged on for almost six years.  I sure miss that old tear, coffee, coke stained keyboard.

Bill Gates has brought us a long way from the cee colon backslash (C :\) days to this stuff he calls Windows 8.1.  I think it will be ok but there is a learning curve, and those curves get more treacherous the older I get.

I even splurged and bought a 24 inch monitor.  I remember when TVs were only about half that big.

I could ramble some more about the “if it can go wrong it will” stuff but I think you get the idea.

When old men can’t think of anything else to talk about they talk about the weather (god this new keyboard is noisy), so I will talk a little bit about the weather.

Oklahoma provides an abundance of conversation worthy weather; ranging from triple digit heat to wind to tornados and an occasional blizzard. Oklahoma also provides us with an abundance of absolutely gorgeous fall days; my favorite season.

Recently I took advantage of one of those days and drove the open air Jeep in to town to do some errands. As I was leaving my neighborhood I looked up to admire the cloudless blue sky.  I saw two buzzards high above the trees, wings spread effortlessly gliding and they appeared to be enjoying the view and the day.

As I made my rounds in town I became a little frustrated with the heavy traffic, I had to wait for one long train and it seemed like I caught every traffic light red.  While waiting for some of those lights to turn green I looked up at that blue sky and thought of those buzzards, they didn’t have traffic or traffic lights.

When you drive an open air Jeep and you shop a little bit you kind of need to stay with the vehicle for theft prevention, so I stopped at Del Rancho for lunch.  I don’t even need to check the menu, I just automatically order the Steak Sandwich Supreme with Onion Rings and lots of ketchup.  As I munched on the healthy and wholesome lunch, I continued to look at the sky and again I thought about those buzzards and I guess I was just a little bit jealous.

I looked skyward as I approached my neighborhood, all I saw was clear blue sky, about the same time I noticed a foul but distinct odor, yes I smelled a skunk and over on the right shoulder I saw my two buzzards.  I still had the pleasant taste of Steak Sandwich Supreme in my mouth and those buzzards were having skunk for lunch.

Life is filled with tradeoffs; I decided the traffic really wasn’t that bad.

It feels good to be back, I missed you guys.

Good Night and God Bless.

Dave

Baseball Anyone???

Seventeen years ago on a rainy August evening at The Ballpark in Arlington; Maw Maw, Paw Paw and two adorable little blond headed five year-olds were ready for our first major league baseball experience.  Our seats were front row but way out in left field.  Out there with Rusty Greer; Bobby Witt was on the mound and some kid they called Pudge was behind the plate.  In the visitor’s dugout were the mighty Yankees.

In the top of the first inning the young Yankee shortstop only in his second full major league season stepped in the batter’s box; his uniform number was 2, the name JETER above the 2 in block letters.

Conner said with confidence “Maw Maw, he’s good” Cale agreed.  No one told them he was good, they came to that conclusion based on what they saw on TV and from reading the sports page every day.  The guys learned to read and picked up their basic math skills from the sports page before they started school.

Last night at Yankee Stadium in the bottom of the 9th number 2 stepped in the box; the score was tied there was a runner on 2nd base.  Jeter hit a clean single to right field, the run scored, Yankees Win. A fitting end to a great career, it was his last appearance before the home fans at Yankee Stadium.

I think Conner and his Maw Maw watched the game and Conner probably looked at her, smiled, and said “remember a long time ago I told you he was good”.

I have never been a Yankees fan, in fact when I was a kid I hated me some Yankees, I outgrew the hate but never became a fan.  Over the years I became a Derek Jeter fan.  In my opinion number 2 is a class act.

To Derek: You have been good for the game, baseball will miss you.  Enjoy whatever is next.

To Conner: Your time here was too short to build the following of the Yankees #2, but those of us fortunate enough to know you still love you and miss you every day.  Give your Maw Maw a hug for me.

Thanks for listening, keep me in your prayers.

Good Night and God Bless.

Dave

Last of the Pics; I Promise

Just a few more pics and I won’t mention Alaska again; unless I go there again.

I think the longer we were gone the fewer pictures I took or maybe the quality just declined.

We start tonight in Fairbanks.

Our ride north of the Arctic Circle to Coldfoot and Wiseman

Our ride north of the Arctic Circle to Coldfoot and Wiseman

A good look at the Yukon river

A good look at the Yukon river

Yes, it is the Alaska Pipeline near Coldfoot

Yes, it is the Alaska Pipeline near Coldfoot

About as peaceful as it gets; Wiseman, Alaska

About as peaceful as it gets; Wiseman, Alaska

Some more Wiseman

Some more Wiseman

They wanted to name the place Ptarmigan, no one knew how to spell it. They just called it Chicken

They wanted to name the place Ptarmigan, no one knew how to spell it. They just called it Chicken

Near Chicken

Near Chicken

A mostly gravel but worth it beautiful  180 mile drive

A mostly gravel but worth it beautiful 180 mile drive

Fixed a flat (almost) at this little self serve in Chicken

Fixed a flat (almost) at this little self serve in Chicken

A typical view along the "Top of the World"

A typical view along the “Top of the World”

Our hotel in Dawson City, Yukon Yerritory

Our hotel in Dawson City, Yukon Yerritory

Sunset on the Yukon River at 11:05 pm

Sunset on the Yukon River at 11:05 pm

Looking down on Dawson City and the Yukon

Looking down on Dawson City and the Yukon

The next three are of Emerald Lake between Whitehorse, YT and Skagway AK; it had to be the “Oh My God” look at that view of the entire trip.

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These three are just outside Skagway; near the abandoned gold rush town of Dyea.

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On our way to Sitka

On our way to Sitka

A little of the Russian heritage in Sitka

A little of the Russian heritage in Sitka

Another look at Sitka

Another look at Sitka

Chasing Salmon, we saw a lot of these guys

Chasing Salmon, we saw a lot of these guys

One more look over the stern

One more look over the stern

The sun sets on a great trip.

The sun sets on a great trip.

Thanks for riding along; I hope I didn’t bore you too much.

Good Night and God Bless.

Dave

Just a Few More Pics…….

Allow me to bore you with a few more pictures of our 49th and the Yukon Territory. I promise I’m going to put his Alaska deal to bed soon and write about something else or don’t write. At least if I do it this way you don’t have to be nice and pretend to pay attention and enjoy the things.

I think we were running around the Gulf of Alaska on that tour boat when I quit last time. We will continue from there.

Ah, a Humpback finally got in range of the 300mm telephoto.

Ah, a Humpback finally got in range of the 300mm telephoto.

More Humpback, these guys put on quite a show.  I probably have 40 pics kind of like this one.

More Humpback, these guys put on quite a show. I probably have 40 pics kind of like this one.

Probably the highlight of the day.  Three pods of Orcas, about 30 of them, traveling together.

Probably the highlight of the day. Three pods of Orcas, about 30 of them, traveling together.

Another of about a million shots of the pretty stuff

Another of about a million shots of the pretty stuff

Harbor Seals, living the good life.

Harbor Seals, living the good life.

Just some more glacier

Just some more glacier

One of my favorites

One of my favorites

See the pretty little Puffin

See the pretty little Puffin

The Harbor at Seward

The Harbor at Seward

We said good bye to Seward and went north to Talkeetna and Denali.

Our ride for 27 miles down the Chulitna river

Our ride for 27 miles down the Chulitna river

A good look at McKinley from my seat in the raft

A good look at McKinley from my seat in the raft

The big guy "McKinley" or "Denali" if you prefer says goodnight

The big guy “McKinley” or “Denali” if you prefer says goodnight

A '53 Dehavilland Beaver, our ride to a glacier on McKinley

A ’53 Dehavilland Beaver, our ride to a glacier on McKinley

On our way there

On our way there

More on our way there

More on our way there

Patty, on the glacier

Patty, on the glacier

On the way back

On the way back

Welcome to Denali

Welcome to Denali

Our ride.  It was clean when we started.

Our ride. It was clean when we started.

The pic doesn't do it justice.

The pic doesn’t do it justice.

Look Ma, no guard rail.

Look Ma, no guard rail.

More scenery

More scenery

Don't need to tell you.  It's a mama moose

Don’t need to tell you. It’s a mama moose

Just a pretty little lake deep in Denali

Just a pretty little lake deep in Denali

It had character and the food was good, that's all you need.

It had character and the food was good, that’s all you need.

A mama and her babies.  I know, but I was shooting a 300mm out a bus window.

A mama and her babies. I know, but I was shooting a 300mm out a bus window.

A little farther down the road.  Papa bear

A little farther down the road. Papa bear

Good bye Denali, It was fun.

Good bye Denali, It was fun.

I still have about 25 or so but i am going to quit tonight, I’ll do the rest of them in a day or two.

Good Night and God Bless.

Dave

I Said I Would

The last time I was here I said I would put something together and post some pictures in a few days. I guess in my world 17 or 18 is a few.
I could tell you I’ve been busy or I’ve been sick or any number of other excuses. I really have been sick but Doc thinks he can get my BP back down to an acceptable level and tonight the ring finger on my left hand is throbbing like a son of a gun, darn crowbar. Fact is I just haven’t been in a writing mood and I just finished screwing with the pictures a couple days ago.
I will bore you with a few stats before we see the pics. I used four different cameras and snapped a shutter on the north side of 1700 times. I don’t need to tell you a lot of them were garbage; however the first scrub left me with 895 keepers. I tightened the limits and still wound up with over 200 suitable for “show and tell”.
I think WordPress (my blog host) would pull the plug if I tried to share all of them with you so I scrubbed again. I think I have just over seventy to share.
I have them in kind of a sequence to correspond with our trip. I will try to put a little info with each pic.

Hwy 101 north of Coos Bay, OR

Hwy 101 north of Coos Bay, OR

A great lunch stop at some little town in Oregon

A great lunch stop at some little town in Oregon

Our ride from Bellingham to Ketchikan

Our ride from Bellingham to Ketchikan

Some prefer camping on the boat; we preferred not to camp.

Some prefer camping on the boat; we preferred not to camp.

Always need a little duct tape

Always need a little duct tape

Dinner aboard the Columbia

Dinner aboard the Columbia

Lighthouse along the inside passage

Lighthouse along the inside passage

A shopping area in Ketchikan.

A shopping area in Ketchikan.

One of many Totem Poles in Ketchikan.

One of many Totem Poles in Ketchikan.

I am the short one.

I am the short one.

The Mendenhall glacier in Juneau

The Mendenhall glacier in Juneau

Somewhere between Juneau and Whittier

Somewhere between Juneau and Whittier

Flowers outside the museum in Anchorage

Flowers outside the museum in Anchorage

Locals Salmon fishing in Shipp Creek just outside our hotel in Anchorage.

Locals Salmon fishing in Shipp Creek just outside our hotel in Anchorage.

View of Cook Inlet from our hotel in Homer

View of Cook Inlet from our hotel in Homer

The harbor on the Homer Spit

The harbor on the Homer Spit

Our ride for a great day out of Seward

Our ride for a great day out of Seward

Near Seward (I just like the pic)

Near Seward (I just like the pic)

Patty and some glacier; I don't remember it's name.

Patty and some glacier; I don’t remember it’s name.

Near Seward

Near Seward

I'm at a loss for words

I’m at a loss for words

Sea Lions posing for the tourists

Sea Lions posing for the tourists

Just one I like

Just one I like

Another glacier shot

Another glacier shot

Another one I like

Another one I like

I am going to quit tonight, I think i am about 1/3 through. I will see how this works; if they do OK I will try to run some more tomorrow.

Good Night and God Bless.

Dave

I Know, It’s Been A While…….

I know; we haven’t talked in a while. In fact we were way up north in Dawson City, YT last time I pounded the keyboard if you want to call that thing on an iPad a keyboard.

Tonight I am in the comfort of my cluttered and messy home pounding my favorite old keyboard.

The trip was very educational; one of the insignificant things I learned is that I don’t write very well when I am on the road. I guess I don’t write very well here either but it is more fun and relaxing here.

We enjoyed Dawson; it was just a fun place to hang out. We were a little bit south and a month or so late for the true midnight sun but it was light enough to snap this pic a few minutes after 11:00 PM.
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Alright I can do pics again.

Our hotel in Dawson
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I guess we kind of started the long journey home from there; our next planned stop was 332 miles south at Whitehorse, YT. We had an unscheduled stop about an hour south of Dawson.

Remember that tire problem we had in Chicken; we got to unload about half our stuff and change that thing right there beside the road. The first one I’ve changed beside the road in probably twenty years. I got the tire problem taken care of in Whitehorse.

I promised a pic of the service station in Chicken where I almost got the thing fixed a few days earlier; here is that pic.

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We did a little site seeing in the rain in Whitehorse but it was mainly just a necessary overnight stop.

Our next overnight stop was Skagway. We weren’t anxious to start that 109 mile drive. Along the way several people had told us we should have gone to Haines instead of Skagway. When we planned the trip we really just kind of flipped a coin between the two and picked Skagway. We were pleasantly surprised; the drive was absolutely beautiful.

We stopped in a little place called Carcross, short for Caribou crossing. We met some very interesting and friendly people in the Visitors Center and also in some of the shops. Carcross, YT will go on my list of favorite places and not just for this trip but for all time.

This pic is of Emerald Lake, a few miles north of Carcross, trust me, the picture doesn’t do it justice.

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Skagway proved to be the least favorite place we visited during the entire trip. The only thing we found worthy of a positive comment is a very good seafood restaurant. The place was way too commercial; it was mostly jewelry stores and souvenir shops preying on the cruise ship visitors.

We spent about 30 minutes in town and headed to the country. We spent several hours exploring the back roads and trails in and around Dyea. Dyea was a thriving town during the early gold rush days, the railroad didn’t go there; Dyea didn’t survive.
At one point on our way to Dyea the altimeter on the GPS showed 23 ft. below sea level. We had a good day.

We left Skagway about 9:00PM Monday night aboard the Columbia; we were on our way back to the lower 48. We rode the Marine Highway four nights and three days arriving in Bellingham, WA Friday morning.

The ferry stopped several places along the way. Some of the stops were only for an hour or so and some of them were at midnight or two in the morning. We were in Sitka and Ketchikan for three or four hours in the afternoon, we seized the opportunity to get off the boat for a little while and enjoyed both places.

Upon leaving Bellingham our goal was to get home Sunday. We got a few hours sleep in Butte, MT and Limon, CO and I left Patty and her stuff at her house Sunday about 8:00PM and I came to my house.

Before I quit tonight I will bore you with a few quick stats. We were gone 35 days; we slept in 20 different beds. We put 7,480 miles on the old Chrysler and rode the ferries about 2500 miles if I did the math right.

I have my pics out of the cameras, phone an iPad. I still need to sort and edit them; if I can find 15 or 20 good ones out of the few hundred I took I will try to put something together and post it in a few days.

It was a great run and I can cross another one off the bucket list.

Good Night and God Bless.

Dave

Still No Pics. . . .

I wrote this last night but couldn’t get it to upload. It may look a little strange but I will fill in some gaps and add a little of today’s activity.

We are in Dawson City, Yukon Territory tonight. It is raining a little, I have good WiFi but to be honest I was too tired or maybe lazy to get the laptop out of the car.

I think we had just got to Fairbanks when we last talked. We really enjoyed our time there.

Monday we took a flight up to Coldfoot, a little place on the Dalton Highway, about 60 miles north of the Arctic Circle. Since we were in the neighborhood we caught a van driven by one of, those kids I talked about last time, this one a University of Georgia student from Atlanta. A very personable and knowledgeable young lady spending her summer living in a tent and explaining the far north to old geezers like me.

She drove us thirteen miles up the road to Wiseman. A small village with only thirteen residents. Their claim to fame: they are permanent residents, they don’t go south when the snow flies. Jack, one of the residents, gave us an excellent presentation on the history and lifestyle of Wiseman.

The flight, much to my surprise, was very scenic. I don’t know why, but I was expecting to see a bunch of frozen tundra. I think that starts another hundred or two miles up the road.

Tuesday was a rainy day in Fairbanks. Patty has this unique ability to find a museum on rainy days. She did good this time; we spent most of the day in the Museum Of The North on the campus of The University of Alaska Fairbanks. I don’t know if I should be concerned or proud, but I am beginning to enjoy the museum visits. Never too old to grow.

Last night we were in Tok, Ak; it is just a small town on the Alaska Highway. We just needed an overnight stop and that is about all Tok has to offer. The motel did provide a presentation by Hugh Neff, a musher, he has competed in the Iditarod and the Yukon Quest for several years, winning the Quest one time. Patty may correct me on this, she pays more attention to those things than I do. He gave an interesting and informative presentation.

I made a mental note at Tok. Don’t stay at a motel / RV park combo; those RV folk get up real early and are kind of noisy.

To say the run from Tok to Dawson was scenic and interesting would be an understatement on both counts. The only things between the two are Chicken, AK and a shared U. S. And Canadian customs facility in the middle of nowhere.

We were expecting asphalt roads with some stretches of gravel. We found mostly gravel with a little asphalt. We drove the Taylor highway the first sixty miles to Chicken and The Top Of the World highway the final 120 miles from Chicken to Dawson.

The view was really kind of breathtaking almost the entire route. I really can’t confirm that for the last twenty or so miles, all we saw was dense fog and rain. Also, they need more gravel on the road, it was pretty muddy.

We arrived in Dawson via a free ferry ride across the Yukon river. The streets in Dawson could also use a little more gravel, they are pretty muddy. Maybe some sunshine tomorrow.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot. Chicken is not a good place to have a flat. They sell a lot of T shirts and other stuff, they have two or three cafés but they don’t fix flats. They did have an air hose and the souvenir shop sold those seven dollar tire plug kits for $29.95. Got her fixed good enough for that 120 mile run and we didn’t have to unload the car and put the spare on. It may be flat tomorrow but I think they fix flats here.

Update: Patty had a picture of the service station where I did the self help tire repair. Darned WiFi the pic just won’t work. It is worth a look I will get it in someday.

They fix flats here in Dawson but the guy that does them is on a service call and won’t be back until noon tomorrow; he is probably gone to Chicken to fix a flat.

Update continued: We had a slow, relaxing but good day in Dawson. I will remember it as the neat little town with boardwalks, no curbs and no pavement except for the highway from Whitehorse.

We took a guided walking tour of the town. Our guide, Justin, is another of those, here because he wants to be guys. He did an excellent job and seemed to enjoy himself.

Dawson sits at the junction of the Klondike and Yukon rivers and dates back the the discovery of gold in 1896.

Thanks for listening, I kind of needed to unwind a little tonight. Maybe some pics in a day or two.

Good Night and God Bless.

Dave and Patty

Google Says . . .

Google says it takes eight hours eleven minutes to make the 356 mile drive from Anchorage to Fairbanks. We had breakfast in Anchorage Tuesday and a late lunch in Fairbanks today, Sunday. A little longer than the Google estimate. OK so we stopped along the way.

We spent about an hour in Wasilla. We didn’t see Sarah; we visited the Iditarod headquarters. It is certainly not a destination type thing but if you are in Wasilla and have an extra hour it is interesting.

Our next delay in that eight hour drive was Talkeetna. This little tourist town kind of stole my heart; it just doesn’t feel like a tourist town. The residents act like they are proud you are there just because you are you.

We did a little “flightseeing” the first day we were there. We joined a young pilot and four other people on board a ’53 Dehaviland Beaver equipped with normal wheels and some little ski things. We flew out to Mt. McKinley, I think about 60 miles, landed on a glacier, got out , played in the snow a bit and came back.

That was the short version because I am not nearly talented enough to put the sheer beauty and excitement of the entire experience into words.

The view from our hotel was superb. Both days we were there it was perfectly clear with McKinley clearly visible. The local opinion is that! because of weather, only 30% of the visitors to the area actually get to see the mountain. Patty and I qualify for membership in the Thirty Percent Club.

Our second day we were just enjoying the town and kind of impulsively we decided it might be fun to ride a raft down the river; no white water, just a lazy ride, all we had to do was get in sit down and enjoy the trip. We did twenty seven miles down the Chulitna River. KiKi drove and we just enjoyed the trip, we didn’t see bears like the ones in the brochure but we saw several eagles and some beautiful scenery. The conversation with the other rafters and KiKi coupled with the relaxing environment resulted in a very enjoyable afternoon.

Thursday (I think) as we were leaving Talkeetna I glanced in the rear view and said good bye, I wish it was see ya later, but I’m sure it was good bye.

On a trip that consumes 35 or so days and includes eighteen different places of lodging, some bad weather and lodging surprises can be expected. Our stop at Denali provided us with both.

I won’t provide all the details, just trust me the cabins were nothing like the brochure/website depicted them. We survived and the stay there made us appreciate all the others especially the one here.

It rained a lot and was cloudy while we were at Denali. No McKinley sitings. We are a little over half way on this run; I’m sure we can expect more weather and lodging surprises or maybe we get lucky.

Even with the weather issues Denali is an awesome experience. We explored the part of the park accessible by private car and some of the surrounding area the first couple days. The last day there we took a bus ride 92.5 miles to the back of the park. I was in awe of the expanse and sheer beauty of the place.

We saw several moose and a lot of caribou. The highlight of the wildlife experience was a Mama grizzly bear and two cubs just enjoying life, we were a few hundred yards away but clearly visible for a long time; down the road a few miles we found papa bear a pretty large grizzly. He was working his way down a riverbed looking for food, again not real close but he stayed with us for a long time.

If beautiful mountain countryside and wildlife viewing is something you enjoy, put a visit to Denali on your bucket list.

The run from Denali to Fairbanks was almost an extension of Denali for viewing the countryside. It is very sparsely populated.
The highlight was a stop in Nenana a small community about 50 miles south of Fairbanks. We got a good feel for small town pride and lifestyle. They were having a boat race, 50hp max, to Fairbanks and return. I think they had about ten entries, everyone was having fun.

Life puts all of us in daily contact with people who provide a service for a living. This trip has taken that contact to another level.

The the waiters, hotel clerks, trip guides etc. we have met in our 49th state beginning with the staff on the boats, employees of the state of Alaska, all of them just leave a good taste in your mouth.

Our contact with most of them was brief, however we got to spend a little time with a few of them.

Mike, the pilot on our McKinley flight was less than half the age of his plane, didn’t ask but I think late twenties. He was from Florida. Patty asked how long he had flown. His response: legally since I was fourteen but I remember sitting on my dad’s lap.

John worked for the rafting company. He grew up in Mississippi and Alaska. He has a degree in Health Care admin. He left the corporate world to come to Alaska live in a cabin without indoor plumbing, ride a bike to work hauling people and rafts up and down the river.

KiKi, like the other two, in her twenties. A very personable young lady from Montana with a Mechanical Engineering degree. She left a good job in Salt Lake to come to Talkeetna and haul old guys like me down the river in a raft. She lived in her car.

I’m sure John and KiKi will return to the corporate world someday but today they, like the others, are where they want to be doing what they enjoy and it is evident in the way they do their job.

I promise more pics when the WiFi improves.

God Bless

Dave and Patty

OOPS and PICS!!!

Let me do the oops first. Patty said I understated the number of Orcas we saw and overstated the number of people on the boat. She got her numbers from the boat captain; I got mine off the top of my head. I think we’ll go with her’s There was only about 25 people on the boat and we saw at least 30 Orcas.

I have a bunch of pictures re-sized and available tonight. I’m not sure how many of them I am patient enough to do, we’ll see. They are still unedited, just like they came from the camera.

The first one or two are the eagles on Ketchikan.
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One from the Mendenhall Glacier at Juneau.
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A Pacific Sunset
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The next bunch are from the boat ride out of Seward
An Eagle and a bad shot of a porpoise
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Sea Lions and Shoreline

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One I like and a Humpback putting on a show

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The Orcas20140728_416 (Small)

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Landscape, Glaciers and Harbor Seals

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A series of a Humpback
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I think I better quit tonight before I jam the system.
I have some more from that run and some from today. We are in Talkeetna for a couple days.
Yes, I know this one is pretty crude and thrown together and I didnt even take the time to proofread it.
Good Night and God Bless.
Dave and Patty

Doin Some Laundry…

How about that title to build some suspense and excitement.
It is Monday about noon and we are back in Anchorage doing exactly what the title says. It may be Tuesday or Wednesday before I get this written and posted.
We went down south for two or three days. We spent time in Homer and Seward. I thought we we might be the only people to go to the fishing capital of the world and didn’t fish, but we saw a couple in Seward yesterday, like us, they were in Homer the previous day, they didn’t fish.
We just kicked back and enjoyed our time in Homer. We did some people watching on the Spit, an excellent place for that sort of thing. Our hotel was right on the beach, not the white sand and sunshine you visualize when you think of a beachfront hotel, but dark almost black sand and a lot of rocks. The tide was out, we spent a pleasant hour or so just kicking rocks, sand and a little,salt water. The weather was nice, a light jacket kind of day.
We stopped at the Saturday Farmers Market. The folks in Homer know how to do a farmers market; beautiful homegrown veggies, we even saw a cabbage named Stella, crafts some jewelry, art and a guy with a ukulele was tuning up for live music as we were leaving.
Visiting Seward wasn’t on our original schedule. We listened to a recommendation and rearranged the schedule, good call. Honestly, if we have a better day during our visit I will be surprised.
We took an all day (9 hours) wildlife and glacier viewing tour aboard the Viewfinder through the Kenai Fjords. It was a small boat, I think 40 or so passengers. If we hadn’t even seen glaciers,or wildlife the scenery was worth the cost of the trip.
I’m sure I will forget something but we got a reasonably close look at a bald eagle, sea otters, sea lions, it almost looked as if the sea lions were waiting for the boat to come by so they could put on a little show. Some porpoises played with the boat for a few minutes. Two Humpback whales put on a heck of a show for several minutes, we actually left before the performance ended.
We left early to maybe get a look at a pod of Orcas. And get a look we did, we found, not one but three pods of Orcas traveling together, it is hard to count them when they are on the move but there was at least 17 or 18.
As the day progressed we encountered several more Humpbacks, a wide variety of birds; with the exception of Puffins and Sea gulls I don’t remember off the top of,my head what all we saw; I think Patty knows.
A large group of Harbor Seals were enjoying the sunshine in front of one of the glaciers.
The glaciers were very interesting and attractive, one of them was popping cracking and releasing large chunks of ice into the bay. I sure there is a name for that sort of thing, but this old southern redneck doesn’t know about that.
We have enjoyed our two stops in Anchorage. Prior to going south we visited the Native Heritage Center. That was a very entertaining and educational experience.
It is now Monday the laundry is washed, dried, folded and packed. We finished that in time to spend about four hours at a hidden gem, The Anchorage Museum. If you are ever in Anchorage allow at least a half day and longer if you can find time in your schedule.
Downtown Anchorage is kind of a,neat place, just fun to walk around and kill a little time even in the rain.
I am going to try to get a few pics of,our day yesterday to work actually what I hope is the first one is a pic of the Eagles in Ketchikan, I think there are four of them in the tree.
I tried, honest I did. The pics didn’t work and I have already put the laptop in the car tonight, doing this on the iPad. I will give it another go maybe tomorrow night. I have some decent unedited pics of the Whales and some of the other wildlife.
We leave Anchorage tomorrow. We will be in the Talkeetna area for a couple days, we aren’t sure what we will find to do there, but it should be interesting.
Good Night and God Bless.
Dave and Patty