Thursday, July 11, 2013


It was holiday time in early July!  And, for the... THIRD... time in my life, i went up to Alaska to enjoy the wilderness, spend time with my good friends Sam and Gretchen, spend 24hrs a day in the light, and get eaten alive by bugs.  Oh how much I love alaska, and oh how much it reminds me that i probably wouldn't mind doing some nursing up in the Northern Latitudes.  Sean and I had a few "discussions" prior to our trip, about what we planned on doing, as we tend to have opposite views as to what a holiday should look like.  I would love to just take off and spend a week in the backcountry.  Sean likes cultural activities. We tried to meet half way, and I think we did.

Lets go through some of the highlights:

My 30th birthday! 
 That's right, I'm now approaching the crest of the hill.  4th decade of life,   We spent a few days in McCarthy, which is a wee small down at the end of a gravel road, surrounded by a national park.  I slept on the ground on my birthday, and I loved it.  Gretchen also brought a cute cake.

And, that being said: being 30 is a big year.  Since I am always thinking about Malawi, and I also want to support work there, I want to ask you/challenge you to contribute 30$ for my 30th Birthday.  The link is here.  They take a little bit of cash, so 33$ would get me 30$ directly to send to Malawi.  Take the time to click and donate.  I apologize for not being able to give you a tax receipt.

We spent time on the coast!
Sean and I got to AK, and drove to Seward for a Day Kayaking trip. It rained.  Hard.  So, they gave us 1/2 day kayak, and 1/2 day boat siteseeing trip.  We went kayaking with "Sunny Cove."  Kinda ironic. But, at least it was fun, and beautiful.  Even though it was raining, Sea Kayaking was way better than the place we stayed the night before.  And, it was better than where we stayed the next night.  I want to do more sea kayaking.  And, good thing i live on the west coast.  'Cause it is kinda easy to do here.


We took the train from Anchorage to Fairbanks.  
It was great to have a day where the routine was: look out the window at beautiful scenery.  Read a book/magazine article.  Nap in big chair.  Eat snack.  Repeat.

We travelled to Wrangall-St Elias National Park
This is where I spent my birthday.  Unfortunately, we were once again, foiled by rain, and turned around early.  The scenery, walking on the glacier, learning history surrounding kenecott copper mine, and conversations around the fire, were all worth the long road trip. It was a bit too much driving for a short time, but, sometimes that happens.  I really appreciate that Sam was willing to do this!

We visited Museums and drank micro-brews
the nice thing about Alaska cities normally are away from the boundaries.  But, there are a few city things worth while.  Both Museums (Museum of the North in Fairbanks, and Anchorage Museum) were well worth it.  Enough to see, but not so much that it is overwhelming. We drank beer at Moose's tooth (Good~  but busy!  wish we could have tried midnight sun...), Hoodoo Brew (only beer, and yum!), and Silvergulch (Great food!).   

and, weird things happened too:
- we stayed at a hostel, where our beds were on a "loft" which really was the landing space for the stairs. Therefore, whenever people when up or down, they walked through our "room."
- we almost stayed at a B&B with very eccentric individuals.  lots of trinkets and stuffed animals.
- we ate at the "Sea galley" in Anchorage.  There was a group of people who sang happy birthday 8 times, minimum.
- we were foiled at our attempt to go to hotsprings by a gigantic forest fire, started by an army training mission.
- the people on the train.  they were quite unique.

and, that's good for now.  For more pics, go to sean's flickr page.

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