Alaska's Winter Horizon

Alaska's Winter Horizon

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Sunday, Birthday Trip, Part 2

Remember to click on the pictures to make them larger.

We left Exit Glacier turnoff and headed back north on the Seward Highway. We drove on down the road enjoying the splendor on both sides. Today the colors of the many lakes of the Kenai peninsula were more spectacular than even yesterday.

We had to stop occasionally and enjoy the tranquil vistas of the land. As we drove on we noticed crowds of people standing in a river with nets. Knowing it was hooligan time, we pulled over to get a closer look. We walked down the bank of the river and watched for awhile as they netted in the dark water for the small oily fish. Eventually, the high winds of the Turnagain Arm got the better of us and we decided to make our way to Portage Glacier. Unfortunately, the glacier road was still full of snow and closed. We had to settle for a view of the ice-covered lake from the parking area. From the looks of it they have an outstanding visitor's center. Alas, it was also closed but we will come back later this summer when it opens. We took a few photos of the lake and decided to head toward Anchorage. While driving down the highway, we managed to spot a bald eagle perched atop a dead tree in a marshy area. This time we weren't able to get a picture because there were no pull offs in the wet area.

Farther up the road we decided to stop and walk around an area that promised a chance to view wildlife. We hadn't been there over 15 or 20 minutes, when we spotted something moving in the scrub. Knowing immediately it wasn't a moose it ambled near the edge of the brush and we knew it was a grizzly! It skirted the edge of the scrub and open field. We tried to get a couple of pictures from a safe distance. As you can tell by the pictures, they were hurried shots! The bear was beautiful but intimidating even from that distance. We made a hasty retreat to the car but when we looked back the bear had already retreated into the cover of the bushes. Since it was getting late in the day, we headed home. It would have been hard to top the bear sighting anyway and we were tired from 2 action-packed days. Hopefully in a couple of weeks we will be able to do something similar.

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