Sunday, June 22, 2008

Summer Solstice 2008

Summer Solstice 2008 began with the Mayors Marathon. Gretchen and I both competed in the 1/2 Marathon Race. This rolling course starts and finishes at West High School, following the coastline for most of the race, touring parts of the airport access roads. The first couple miles were a gorgeous drizzly over cast morning, but the sun came out for a nice finish.
We finished off the evening watching the sunset on the longest day of the year from Flattop Mountain.
Ryan and Ashley (the "Machine" not pictured) taking in the nice views.
A cloudy morning gave birth to a gorgeous evening. The setting sun to the northwest behind the Alaskan Range, making it appear as if Denali, Hunter, and Foraker are on fire.
A vast sky, saying goodnight to Anchorage. Rather then gain, we now loose a little more day light each day........

Fishing on a School Night; or Women of the Russian River

Gretchen and Sue rushed down early wednesday morning to get in two full days of fishing, meeting friend, Gail, the fishing guru.
Despite poor salmon runs elsewhere in the state, with theories ranging from Global Warming to Alien Abduction of the species, Gretchen brought home her two day limit of 6 "reds".

Monday, June 16, 2008

KESUGI RIDGE

Nestled in between the Susitna and Chulitna Rivers is Kesugi Ridge, a rocky, wind swept spine that runs some what parallel to the Alaskan Range. Kesugi Ridge provides some of the most spectacular views of Denali and the surrounding peaks


Speeding away as soon as the clock struck 5pm Friday, we hit the trail sometime around 930pm. Thanks to the evenings of endless daylight we could hike until almost midnight without the need for a headlamp.The group, minus Sue, who was taking this photo.

About the only way to get two huskies to stay still in a family photo is to lift there paws off the ground.
Sue and Gretchen.
Jasper and Tyler, not posing for this candid shot, passed out cold after running all over the tundra chasing Marmots.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Bird Ridge Day Hike

Saturday's day hike up Bird Ridge to Bird's Eye Peak and Bird Ridge Overlook .

There was still a little snow on top, and of course, the dogs will find it.
Bird Ridge has several "false peaks" as you ascend the trail, pictured here is the second to last rocky knoll, overlooking the Turnagain Arm and Kenai Mountains, about 4500 feet above sea level.
Looking north up the Penguin Creek Valley. On the right side of the valley is Penguin Peak, and the left side of the valley, hidden by the clouds, is the rocky Bird Peak.
4,500 feet up and above tree line is always the best place for a nice picnic lunch.
Jasper decides he should be in the center of the photograph.
Family photo, minus one.

Jack, though extremly photogenic, decides he's had enough family photo's for the day...

Fieldtrip to Fairbanks

Thanks to one single almond resulting in a broken tooth while on patrol in Iraq last summer, I earned myself several all expense paid trips to Fairbanks, and a visit to the only Army Oral Surgeon in Alaska.

Fairbanks, about 400-450 miles north of Anchorage, depending on which of the two highways you take.
Nestled on the Chena River, just north east of its confluence with the Tanana River.
The infamous Alaska Pipeline, running over 800 miles from Prudhoe Bay on the Arctic Ocean to Valdez on the Prince William Sound.
We stopped by the Creamers Field, a Waterfowl Bird Refuge on the north side of town.

On the way back we drove by the Matanuska Glacier.


Monday, June 2, 2008

Saturday Paddle; First Tour of the PrinceWilliam Sound-Whittier, AK

This weekend Gretchen and I went out for our capstone event of the Intro to Sea Kayaking class we've been taking through the Alaska Kayak Academy.

We paddled about 6 miles around the Passage Canal, of the Prince William Sound, launching our boats from the small town of Whittier, nestled in the Kenai Mountains of the Chugach Range, about 7 miles on the other side of a tunnel from Portage.
The best part of the class was paddling a variety of boats, using an assortment of paddles, really giving us a taste for the technique and equipment of this sport.
During our 7 hour paddle, we saw Bald Eagles, flocks of thousands of Sea Gulls, Sea Otter, Porcupine, even a Black Bear.

It was a great day, and now we're graduates, ready to take on expeditionary sea kayaking around the Alaska waterways.

Gold Nugget Triathalon


Swim 500 Meters.
Bike 10 miles.
Run 4.1 miles.