Monday, August 16, 2010

I want to see a MOOSE!

My family came into town at the beginning of July (I know, we are way behind). They landed on my birthday and took us to Simon & Seaforts for dinner! While I finished up my work week, Rebekah took them around to Thunderbird Falls, Shopping on 4th Avenue, the Anchorage Museum, and Potter's Marsh to see the Arctic Terns (part of #86) my dad had read about.

We would spend the next 9 days traveling around the state doing everything from glacial trekking to halibut fishing.

Early Saturday morning we got up to drive the Richardson Highway north to Fairbanks. While the weather wasn't great (it was raining), it cleared up long enough for us to stop at the Matanuska Glacier.

For those that don't remember from a very early blog, it is the largest glacier accessible by car in the United States and Rebekah and I had visited it on one of our first trips around the state. The access is privately controlled, so you have to pay an entrance fee. But, you can actually hike out onto the glacier which is a very interesting experience.

Last time we had just walked a short way onto the glacier, but this time we were more adventurous (after hearing stories from friends) and hiked down to a cool glacial lake on top of the glacier itself.

The lake sat at the face of a cliff of ice around 100 feet tall.

When we left the glacier we continued driving the Richardson Highway viewing the Trans Alaska Pipeline along the way. However, the beautiful scenery, pipeline, and walking on a glacier apparently wasn't enough. Everyone kept saying that they wanted to see a moose, why wasn't there a moose, where are all the moose?

So, after looking and looking I finally found a moose drinking in a small pond just off the road. I thought this would end it there, but soon found out that this moose wasn't good enough as it didn't have a big enough rack (apparently my family has gotten shallow since I left).

Almost 12 hours after we left that morning we made it to North Pole, Alaska and the Santa Claus House. We looked around the gift shop and of course took a picture with Santa!

Next, we finished the final 10 miles to Fairbanks and immediately headed to our favorite restaurant this far north, the Silver Gulch.

The longest driving day of the trip was complete, so we headed to the Sophie Station Hotel for a restful night's sleep!


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