Saturday, August 12, 2017

Palmer to Stewart-Hyder

This will be the last post about our trip to Alaska, what a wild ride.  I don't think we will ever have an adventure quite like this again.  The sights and sounds of the Yukon and Alaska are unbelievable.  It is hard to describe everything we have seen and experienced in the last two months.  I hope the pictures will tell most of the story as I am not very good at putting into words the visual experience of the trip.

The next stop on the trip was Palmer, AK.  History of Palmer.  We spent two nights at a local campground.  The day we were there we had a tour of a home from the original settlers and a museum.  We then had lunch at a local restaurant called the Noisy Goose.  The food was very good. 

After lunch we went out to a Musk Ox Farm. One of the employees gave us a tour of the farm.

One of the things that the Musk Ox produce is qiviut, the woolly material is actually eight times stronger than sheep’s wool with none of the uncomfortable scratching. Each year, the shed hair is combed from the oxen’s body before it can hit the ground and given over to a local collective of artisans who spin it into yarns and cloth, providing much needed income to the local population.
One skein of yarn was $185.00

Musk Ox Farm

On the road to Valdez.


Our next stop was Valdez, AK.  We had a three night stop here.  We had a campground right on the bay. This is right across the bay from the Exon refinery.  Most of the area has recovered from the oil spill.

 One of the days was a free day and the other day was a nine hour cruise on Prince William Sound to Mears Glacier and to hopefully see wildlife.

One of the first wildlife we see is a raft of sea otters.  I love watching these little guys they are so cute.

The view from the ship is amazing.

A little further along we see a few sea lions lounging on a buoy.

More awesome views from the ship. 

The ships captain, female, comes on the intercom and says a humpback whale has been spotted up ahead, so off we go to see if we can catch a glimpse of it.  We got to the area and waited to see if any thing came to the surface.  After a few minutes we spotted a spout coming out of water.  Unfortunately trying to get a picture was impossible.  We did manage to get one as it was going back under the water.

Next someone spotted a bear on the shore.

Now we are getting closer to the Mears Glacier.  We are starting to see the icebergs that are calving from the glacier.

Then we get a close up of the glacier.

The captain stopped the boat and shut the engines off so we could here the glacier.  It sounded like it was alive.  From the sound of what sounded like distant thunder to a sharp crack that sounded like a gun shot.  It was pretty cool to watch the pieces fall off and into the water.  There were just little pieces dropping off today.

Pretty soon we were heading back to base.

What an awesome day.
More Valdez pictures

Next stop Skagway.

We headed down the road to Skagway.  More luscious scenery.  It just never stops.  One of our stops was at Emerald Lake.

The next stop was right around the corner, the smallest desert in the world.

The rivers, lakes and waterfalls just never stop.

We are in Skagway

Skagway has a historical district of about 100 buildings from the gold rush era. It receives about a million tourists annually,[most of whom (about three quarters) come on cruise ships.

We stopped at the Skagway Fish Co. for dinner the first night in town and I had the best Red King Crab ever.

We are going on two adventures while we are here.  One is a boat trip to the capitol of Alaska, Juneau.
The other is the train that goes up the mountain from Skagway.
White Pass and Yukon Railroad

Juneau cannot be reached by land, water only.

So it is either by boat or plane.

Some of the sites on the way to Juneau by boat.

 Robin finally caught a picture of the tail of a Humpback whale.

We stopped at the Red Dog Saloon for lunch

Red Dog Saloon

The next day we took the train, relaxed and enjoyed the scenery.

The last entry for this blog will be the Stewart Hyder stop.  This is the place we get to watch the bears fish for salmon.

The highway to Stewart was filled with more amazing views and animals.

We camped in Stewart, Yukon and drove up to Hyder, Ak. the next day to watch the bears and eagles fish for salmon,

We also took a drive up the road to Salmon Glacier.  Not sure how many glaciers we have seen on this trip but there were lots.

The rest of the trip was pretty much driving to get back to Prince George and the end of the Caravan.
Thus was the end of a truly great adventure.
Hope you enjoyed traveling along with us.  We enjoyed having you along.
Still Livin the dream.......... 


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