Well, we knew it was coming. We just weren't quite ready. At least it did wait until Saturday, October 21st, for our first official snowfall of the season. It has been cold the last few days with lows in the upper teens. Thankfully, we had picked the last of the lettuce and carrots last weekend.
Greg had to brave the snowflakes to finish dinner last night. This picture captures his reaction to seeing the first snowfall.
Friday, September 15, 2017
It is hard to admit it but summer is over for us.
We are enjoying the last of the garden harvests.
This colorful Stellar's Jay was eating some of the final cherries on the trees.
Sunday, July 23, 2017
We woke up to a beautiful sunny day. Got on the bus at 2:00 pm for our eight hour bus trip exploring Denali National Park. We were able to get a glimpse of Denali. It was faint but you could see the entire mountain. That is a pretty rare treat. We had hoped that we could get a better picture from Eielson Visitor Center, but the clouds had moved in by then and blocked the view. We did manage to see some caribou within the first hour of the trip. This one is still shedding his long winter hair. The hair comes in quite handy in the spring and early summer as it protects them from those pesky mosquitoes!
Upon leaving Toklat, we soon managed to see a grizzly bear and a caribou in close proximity to each other. Although grizzlies are incredibly fast, it would have been unlikely that he could have chased down this healthy caribou. The bear seemed content to dig for grubs and roots.
Near the end of the bus ride back, we managed to see a cow moose with her two calves right on the edge of the road. Our wildlife count for the day: three grizzly bears, several caribou, a golden eagle, a short eared owl, loads of snowshoe hares, three Dall sheep dancing on the mountain, and three moose. It was a nearly perfect day!
Got up the next morning and headed home to Anchorage. We made a quick stop to show Mom the old Igloo gas station near Cantwell. I bet this was really something to see when it was still open and operating.
As it turns out, Mom wouldn't have had to go up to Denali to see a bear. We had a black bear right in our front yard Saturday afternoon! It looked around and then took off up the road. He was too quick for a photo.
Mom and I leave Tuesday morning for her return trip to Tennessee. Greg and I both have enjoyed having her stay with us and explore this great state. The time has flown by! She had a great time and thinks everyone should see the state. Maybe we can talk her into staying the entire summer next year!
Friday, July 21, 2017
I'm sure Mom's new friends will miss her while we are gone on a trip! However, you can't come all the way to Alaska without going to see Denali. So we got up Sunday and headed north to Denali.
After a pleasant drive on this overcast day, we arrived at our destination in the late afternoon. We dropped off our luggage at our hotel room and took a drive on the park road. We stopped at the Wilderness Access Center and got our bus tickets for the next day's ride into the park.
Didn't see any wildlife on this run, except for snowshoe hares, so we decided to drive to Healy and fill up the car with gas. We also took a drive down Stampede Road. Snowshoe hares seemed to be all over the place here also! After eating way too much at the Salmon Bake, we drove back into the park around 10 pm. This time we managed to see a cow moose with twins!
They were just munching away on vegetation close to the edge of the roadside.
We drove as far as Savage River and didn't see any other large wildlife.
A beautiful rainbow bid us good night as we were leaving the park. We took that as a good sign and made our way back to room to rest and get ready for the bus adventure.
Saturday, July 15, 2017
What a view we had from our room in Homer! It was so relaxing to sit on the balcony and watch the ships go out on their fishing trips.
Mom and I decided to get out and do some sightseeing around the city. We took a trip up to Skyline Drive and looked out across the spit. The Homer Spit is about 4.5 miles long. It is a really narrow strip of land, really mostly sand and gravel. Our hotel is at the very end of it, hence the name Lands' End.
You can also see several of the glaciers that are found in the mountain ranges that surround Kachemak Bay.Nikolaevsk. The community is inhabited by Russian Old Believers. This is their Russian Orthodox church.
The next morning, we headed out for a trip to Seward. Our first stop was in the Kenai Fjords National Park. Here is Mom reading about the beautiful surrounding forests and glaciers.
Friday, July 14, 2017
Mom and I took off for a trip down to Homer and Seward. We stopped along the way to eat lunch near Kenai Lake. The water is so wonderfully blue here! Several people were out in rafts and kayaks enjoying the water.
There were some awesome views of the beach and the distant volcano from the bluff of the church
Well, this was not exactly a comforting sight to see upon getting into our room! I did read it in case the sirens went off.
Mom went out onto the balcony to enjoy the gorgeous views. We both fell asleep to the soothing sounds of the waves crashing onto the beach.
Monday, July 10, 2017
I took this picture right before retiring for the night at Sheep Mountain Lodge. You can just make out the moon rising above the mountains.
It is a pigeon, but we had never seen one with such different colors.
Mom and I head out again tomorrow for a trip to Seward and Homer.