Finally Finished the journey

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Flag of United States  , Alaska
Tuesday, July 20, 2010

So we finally made it to Anchorage AK.  We basically did a big 30 hr push and made it from Fort Nelson to Anchorage. 
We started our day at 730, after having breakfast at the hotel.  While we were getting ready to leave I happen to notice this pair of elderly ladies ( I would say 70's) getting into a red cadillac wagon.  One of them was dressed in jeans, black t-shirt, jean vest w/pins and patten leather shoes.  The other was dressed in an L.L. Bean style road traveling outfit.  I found them interesting and didn't realize at that point we would meet them later down the road. 

Off we went heading to the northern rockies.  While there we had a day of discovery channel animal parade.  The first we saw was a Moose w/her calf crossing the road.  We actually had to put on the breaks in order not to hit them.  Next we saw mountain sheep hanging out and licking the salt off the road.  A pair of young male elk were next trotting up the road.  We also saw a pair of deer dashing off into the woods, a black bear cub, rabbits, bats and bisson and horses!  One does not realize how large a bisson is until it wanders past your car and you realize it is almost the same size as the car!  In Canada they are called Canadian Speed Bumps and Moose are called swamp donkeys.  I always love learning new terminology.  Having the animals all so close to  the road was fasinating and really was like watching the Discovery Channel live.  Since all the animals were so close we did not get out of the vehicle and only took photos from the car.  There were people getting out of their cars and taking pictures as they hollered at the animals.  All I can say . . . "Darwin-ism". 

At Muncho Lake where the water is as blue as Caribean water we stopped at a rest area and met up with the ladies we had seen eariler.   They were taking a driving break and having a snack.  The lady in the jeans turned out to be Bev and the other lady was Helen.  They were taking break before pushing on.  They ended up being from California and were on their way for an Alaskan "tour".  They were heading to Fairbanks first and then around the state.  There were many times we say them only the way were Bev was driving and Helen was trying to take pictures out the window.  Bev was driving fast enough so that she couldn't stop for pictures.  Because when she did Helen would get out of the car and wander around.  Bev was on a mission to get to the destination and damn the journey.  At one point we got caught in traffic and were behind them.  After the traffic eased up Bev was passing every RV and 18 wheeler in her way.  We left them in Lake Watson where the sign post forest is.  They were staying the night and then heading on in the morning.  We figured that Bev was the type of woman to have a magnum 357 loaded in the seat next to her.  She was not the type of woman to mess around with. 

We made it to Fort Wayne by 4:00 in the afternoon and decided at that point to continue on.  It looked like on the map we only had another 250 miles to go and would be no problem.  Once we got past Fort Wayne by 100 miles the road turned bad.  The Yukon lived up to its reputation of horrible roads.  You would hit a pot hole and the road would dip at the same time.  I think I now understand what it must have been to ride in a wagon out west.  We traveled through the night because any Inn/Hotel we saw was closed and/or abandoned, we had no choice but to carry on.  We stopped at a rest stop outside of the Canada/Alaska boarder for some sleep in the car.  We woke up 1.5 hrs later to a bunch  of French Canadians walking past our SUV and looking in.  Needless to say we didn't get back to sleep.  Hence we hit the road again and headed to Boarder City.  Once we made it to Boarder City we had to wait a couple of hrs for the gas station to open since we didn't have enough to make it to Tok which was 97 miles away.  We had made it that far and figured that we didn't need to run out of gas.  We traveled highway 1 to Anchorage. 

When we first entered Alaska the scenery was not to exciting.  It was a lot of scrub brush and construction.  Then the scenery started to change to aspen, and pine.  The elevation continued to increase and we could start to see lakes and other mountains.  Then we came upon Matanuska glacier.  WOW!!!  There is nothing like seeing your first glacier in person.  The age of the ice and the fact it is 18,000 old and I get to see it in person is breath-taking.  This is a moment to appreciate in life.  Not everybody gets this chance.  It may be there for everybody by not everybody will grasp the opportunity or look for the opportunity to get there.  I feel blessed.
We then continued on down the outside of the Chugach Moutains.  The road was curvey and steep.  A last bit of thrill before we finished out trip to Anchorage AK. 
We happily arrived at Jason's apartment without any issues or problems.  No broken windshields or blown tires.  Basically the trip was Awesome!!  It was 4188 miles tolls and gas came to $740.00.  All done in 9 days.  I would happily do it again, especially with my Dad. 

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