As our mission statement proclaims, our blog is published periodically but not regularly, particularly for the last ten days. We have been on the go with our Winnebago Tour Group, and we have had Internet equipment failures. A couple of days ago, we purchased a new air card as well as router from Verizon. They were over-nighted to us in Palmer , and we are back on the air again. On top of all that, and this may be the real reason for our hiatus, the weather has been almost continuously gloomy, and that is beginning to affect our mood, and our initiative.
We left Valdez, the topic of our last post, on July 7th, (Day 19), and drove on another cloudy rainy day, which has been the norm rather than the exception this summer in Alaska. Departing Valdez, we couldn't resist just one more photograph of Horsetail Falls.
We arrived in Mendeltna in the pouring rain and were relieved to find our campsite was not a muddy patch as we remembered from our visit here 3 years ago. The Lodge is warm and cozy, offering a full-service restaurant. The interior of the Lodge is all native pine, finished to high gloss. The tables are made from huge pine slabs, each of which would be worth thousands of dollars in the lower 48. Supper was a pizza buffet with salad (3 COWS) while breakfast was rather stale Danish (2 COWS).
Anchorage was established in 1915 as the construction headquarters for the Alaska Railroad. Our first stop was the Anchorage Museum at Rasmuson Center. We visited here 3 years ago and thoroughly enjoyed the exhibits focusing on the art, history and cultures of Alaska. At present the museum features a special exhibit on Joe Reddington, the founder of the present day Iditarod Race. The museum was undergoing expansion when we visited last, and we hoped that the new wing would be open by this time. Not!
Close Encounter with a Wooly Mammoth
Native American Stone Face Sculpture
Whaler in Sealskin Kayak
Museum Photo of Anchorage Main Street after 1964 Earthquake
Our next stop on our tour was Ship Creek, headquarters of the Alaska Railroad, and a popular fishing spot just north downtown Anchorage. The day we visited the creek the salmon were few and far between. Because of the colder than normal weather this summer the salmon runs have been later and in some cases unpredictable. Our bus driver told us that before salmon will swim from the ocean into the fresh water the fresh water must have reached a certain temperature. The fisherman shown below were photographed on out tour this year. The photo of a salmon was taken from this location three years ago, in 2005. The photo of the Alaska RR HQ was taken this visit, but Keith has modified it in Photoshop to add a blue sky, just to lighten the mood.
Old Alaska Railroad Headquarters, with Artificial Blue Sky Courtsey of Photoshop
Antique Alaska Railroad Engine
Casting for Salmon in Ship Creek
Ship Creek Salmon photographed in 2005
Anchorage Fence Sculpture, Showing King, Red, Pink, Coho and Dog Salmon
Our next stop was the airport area, where we saw an extensive floatplane moorage on Lakes Hood and Spenard. We were not permitted to get off the bus to take photos, so again we include a photo from our 2005 visit.
Floatplane takes off from the lake in 2005 Photograph
Moose photographed in 2005 near the Anchorage Airport
Alaska Skyline, Photographed Near the Airport
Mary Ann, Randy & Mary Beth, Norma & Hal, and Kathy
Bert & Shirley, John & Julie, Rick & Carol, Grace
Sorry, Ray, I Cut You Off (Accidentally, Of Course)
Carol, Mary Ellen, Bob & Marilyn
Elaine & Jerry, Dave & Nancy, David & Mary, Marvin & Kareen
Stan & Marsha, Pete & Lou, George & Gail, Barbara & Jim
Thursday, July 10th was a free day in Anchorage so we shopped, did laundry and dined for the second time at the Ding How Mongolian Barbecue (3 COWS) .
Tomorrow we leave for Seward.