ANCHORAGE July 28 – Our last day

Started off our last day with a geocache in the visitors center. We were quite taken with the building as it had a green roof, and I don’t mean it was simply painted green. It had a meadow growing on it. And it was a log cabin. It couldn’t have gotten much more adorable if it had tried.

While inside I spent a lot of time pondering this visual lowdown on the sun and temperature situation this far North. It wasn’t so much the temperatures, but the lack of daylight that held me spellbound.

We muddled around doing a little more caching (obviously) and some souvenir shopping. Or rather scoping out the souvenir shops for later. I didn’t want to schlepp any more around for any longer than I had to.

We met up with Renee for lunch and a local’s tour of Anchorage. It was super cool to see her! It has been ages and ages! So as sad as I was that I missed the Ferret Symposium in Anchorage, I think this makes up for part of it!

Renee took us to Humpy’s for lunch – oh man, any time I can choose which fresh caught delicious fish with which to have my fish & chips made I am in heaven. Also beer.

So the usual. YUM-tastic! I love eating at local, local places and Arissa and I would never have found this place without Renee!

And she introduced us to Star, the reindeer mascot of Anchorage who leads the parades. Seriously.

Also, which was a question that would have nagged me for a while, she explained the bizarre (to me) long, thin park that runs downtown. I mean like super thin. Well, it’s the old airstrip. Ahhhh.

From there we went up into the mountains for a bird’s eye view of Anchorage. And that was such a weird thing to me. It’s so small. And there aren’t a lot of tall buildings. It was quite interesting to take it all in from above. Quite cool. Although on the other hand, despite being in the wilderness, no damn moose sightings. None. Damn moose.

After bidding Renee fairwell, we went to the Alaska Public Lands Information Center which was kinda a National Park and kinda a place full of Alaskan information.

It had stuffed critters – including the ROCK CHICKEN! And handouts, oh the glorious handouts that were available. It was a lot to process.

We lucked out and they were having a discussion / film about the Anchorage Earthquake so we ducked in to learn about that. DAMN. That pretty much sums it up. DAMN. Our timing was super good because following the film/discussion we hooked up with a walking tour by Ranger Roger (seriously) about the earthquake. He had this huge portfolio of photos from immediately after the quake and then we would walk to the same spot and see what it looked like now. Really, very cool.

The tour was winding down about the time it started to rain. So we did the prerequisite last minute gift purchases and then made a dash for our last food stop in Alaska. We ducked into the Glacier Brewhouse and settled in for a good meal. And beer. There’s always beer. And a shirt and sweatshirt.

Farewell Alaska, it was wonderful, splendid, spectacular and amazing! (Although we never did see a damn moose.) But now we must go to the airport and leave for home.

July 29 post script

We flew out of Anchorage super late at night.  That should have put us in Pittsburgh around 9:00 am-ish which meant home with plenty of time to relax and sleep and try to get ourselves ready for work the next day. HOWEVER things went haywire in Chicago. We were on the plane. Then had to get off the plane. Then back on. Then there was some thing they were fixing. But maybe it had been fixed. But the maintenance guys hadn’t filled out the right form or stamped the book or what-the-hell-ever it was that they were supposed to do.

All we really wanted was to be home. Or at least on the ground in Pittsburgh.

And we were eventually, just 3 hours behind schedule.  Vacation went out with a bang, I suppose.

chris on July 28th 2014 in Geocaching, Travel

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