ALASKA THE VAST WILDERNESS

P1010415Alaska is a vast land of wilderness and beauty. You can drive, walk, bike, hike or boat for miles and not see a soul. It is also a land of friendly faces and people. We have met some lovely people on our journey these past few weeks and among the have been our current RV neighbors, Tom and Linda, from Arizona.

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Tom and Linda sharing happy hour with us.

After taking a jet boat cruise up the Susitna River today to the area where it begins to have class V rapids, they asked us to join them for Moscow Mules. Never having had them before we were pleasantly surprised. Served in a copper cup, they were delicious! The conversation was even better. We certainly hope to see them again along the road in Alaska.

Moscow Mule:       4 OZ. Ginger Beer

1 and ½ OZ Vodka

1/6 OZ Lime Juice.

Garnish with Lime slice and serve over ice.

Talkeetna is a lovely little town with several great restaurants and a local brewery. We had a late lunch / dinner at the Wildflower restaurant and it was terrific. The population of Talkeetna is 876 and is a mixture of old town and new. This time of year everyone puts out their rendition of a decorated moose, which makes a lovely addition to the already quaint town. It is located on a spur road only 14 miles from the highway, about half way between Denali and Anchorage. We stayed at Talkeetna Camper Park, which is located close enough to town (3/8 mile) to walk and right next to the train depot.

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The Hurricane train runs from Talkeetna to Hurricane Gulch. It is the only flagstop train left in America. That means you can get on or off anywhere you want just by flagging it down or letting them know where you want to be dropped off. Lots of campers and people rafting down the river use it to get out into the wild. It runs five days a week during the summer. (Thursday-Monday) It is a two hour, 55 mile route…well depending on how many stops it makes. Round trip ticket costs $96.00.

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Our RV camp was managed by a terrific couple, Noreen from Ireland and Trevor from Britain. They were helpful, friendly and funnier than heck. We loved our spot near the train tracks. It was a bit tight, but we had trees near us and the camp was clean and quiet, except for us of course. I highly recommend anyone touring Alaska to stop here.

The jet boat tour today took us about 65 miles up the Susitna River towards Mt. Denali to Devils Canyon. It was a very smooth ride until the rapids and then was a little bumpy. Our Captain, Eli, did a great job of keeping the boat in place while we took photos of the rapids. The naturalist on board, Emily, took us on a short walk in the forest to see an authentic trapper cabin and native Dena’ina Indian encampment. She carried a rifle with her in case of bears. She also pointed out several dangerous plants that we should avoid. It was a great day.P1010356 P1010315 P1010297 P1010391

It’s Father’s day so I took Lennard to the Roadhouse for breakfast. We met one of the mountain climbing guides, Tomas Ceppi from Argentina. He had just led a group to the top of Mt. Denali.

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Family style breakfast at the Roadhouse. Lucky me got to sit next to a mountain climbing guide. Tomas Ceppi. Note small meals served here

Tomorrow we are off to Anchorage and meeting our friends from Vegas, Dennis and Sandy who also have a home and business in Alaska.

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