Saturday, July 26, 2008

Reunion Journey, Day 1 - Fairbanks to Tok

Keith Plans and Kathy Laughs:

On the road again, but not on the route we had originally planned.

Our formal WIT Caravan disbanded on Saturday, July 26th. Kathy always hates to see caravans end, so we decided to join a group of 5 coaches and travel together for another 2 weeks. We will be traveling through eastern Alaska to the western part of the Yukon Territory. Our fellow travelers are people we traveled with in Newfoundland 2 years ago, and we thoroughly enjoy their company. The itinerary is planned to be slow paced.

The sun was shining as we left Fairbanks and headed for Tok, about 200 miles southeast. The first portion of our journey took us down the Richardson Highway to Delta Junction. We soon ran into rain mixed with the sun, followed by a rainbow as we looked back toward Fairbanks.

End of the Rainbow in Fairbanks, Alaska

Along the way we saw a moose floundering in a roadside pond. I was not able to stop for a photo as motorcycles were following us too closely. We did however stop at a couple of scenic pullouts and photographed spectacular views of the Tanana River Valley. The clouds followed us, but Keith has Photoshop to deal with cloudy skies. The fros theaves also followed us into the Tanana River valley. Keith can enhance the appearance of the frost heaves with Photoshop, but he can not take the bounce out of them.

Cloudy Tanana River Valley
Artifically enhanced to add blue sky in Photoshop

Roadway Enhanced by Frost Heaves
in the Tanana River Valley

About 10 miles northwest of Delta Junction the Tanana River crosses the Richardson Highway. Here there is a wonderful opportunity to view the pipeline up close. Engineers have constructed a suspension bridge that lifts the Alaska pipeline over the river.

River Goddess Found on the Banks of the Tanana River

River Goddess Art on the Tanana Riverbank

As we approached Delta Junction, we were held up for an hour as we viewed the Deltana Days Parade. At least we had a front row seat. Those behind us waited almost as long, but did not have our excellent view of the parade.

Deltana Days Parade in Delta Junction, Alaska

A quick stop at the Visitor Center where we took several photos of the official terminus of the Alaska Highway and then onward toTok.

Official Terminus of the Alaska Highway in Delta Junction

At the end of our day we pulled into Tok RV Village, where we stayed on our way north. After a refreshing nap we enjoyed happy hour with our friends, then to bed. Tomorrow our destination is Chicken, Alaska, western terminus of the Top of the World Highway.

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