Archive for July 24th, 2014

DENALI NATIONAL PARK July 24

Oatmeal. Oh how I have missed the simple, non gluttonous breakfast. Ah. And the view was lovely, despite the drizzle.

On to the Natural History Tour of Denali and damn it if Mr. & Mrs. Grumpy McGumperson were on the same stupid bus and recognized us. I told Arissa it was her purple coat they clearly recognized. We spent the rest of the day doing our best to avoid them at all costs. ALL COSTS.

Seriously. We were on a bus, driving through freakin’ Denali NP and did we see any critters? NO. The answer to that is NO. Grumble. Grumble. Grumble. All the way out to Mile 18 (as far as the buses are allowed to go) and nary a critter sighting. Although we did see some massive road construction.

On the way out to the end of mile 18 we stopped at an old ranger cabin, set up like it would have been back in the early 1900s. There also happened to be a ranger talking about what it was like to live in the park then. The first thing I noticed were the spikes on the shutters – bear spikes. So nothing like having to nail pointy things into your shutters to keep the bears out.

 

Also, I’m still very confused about where Denali the mountain actually is. People keep pointing but damn it all we see are clouds with what I’d call foothills. Where is this giant mountain hiding. I feel stupid asking.

 

Next stop, the dog kennels. So finally animals! Although not quite what we were hoping to see.

We did see some big arse moose tracks nearby the kennel, but no moose. Love the dogs. They were so adorable with long, long legs and I wanted to schnarfle all of them. At once. One giant dog pile. What was freaky was that they were all a crazy variety colors, but were the same breed.

 

The dogs were totally laid back until the Ranger presentation started and as soon as they dogs saw the sled, they started to FREAK OUT. MY TURN! MY TURN! MY TURN! It was hilarious! And man, were they super fast. Even hauling an old school sledge on gravel. Damn. I’d love to see them in the Winter, only I don’t particularly want to be in Alaska in the Winter.

 

Brief Dinner Interlude – Elk Burger & 49th State Brewery beer

I had seen a sign for the 49th State Brewery. Figured it was a restaurant. So Arissa & I did our best to find a way UP to it. Google maps was no help as satellite pics up here were not new at all. Hahaha, it just showed construction. So we wound our way up this silly footpath, only to find out that the place was still under contruction. So back down we went, to a place that was so crazily rickety the floors literally were sloping at odd angles and you really did need to use the handrail to walk up the steps! But oh the food! Yum, yum, yum!

Properly stuffed full of food, we decided that it would be a great idea to walk back to the park entrance so we could take our photos by the sign. It was raining. And the sign was a wee bit further away than we had realized. And by a wee bit I mean maybe a mile and a half. But still we schlepped. And still, no moose sightings.

 

On the way back we grabbed an Earthcache and then a traditional that I thought would be under the bridge. So I led Arissa on a frolicking detour/scramble until I read the cache description and realized it was a terrain 1. Oh, let me show you my fine geocaching skills, I’ve been doing this for 9 years.

Check out the rest of the pictures.

chris on July 24th 2014 in Travel