Friday, June 29, 2012

Salmon Netting and Eagle Fights

We have had a busy couple of days since we returned from vacation. DH was off till Thursday so on Wed we headed to the beach in the morning for a picnic lunch and to play. 

The otters were quite frisky this morning and were having a lot of fun frolicking in the sea.

The eagles were hanging out in their nests....
And A was having a good time playing outside.
Playing at the edge of the world. Beautiful and Fun!

We went out again that evening to meet a bunch of friends for a bonfire and to net some sockeye salmon. When we pulled up to the beach, the horses were right by the road. They had a really hard time this winter and several of them passed away, some of them are still really skinny. I hope they can get some weight back on them this summer.

Netting salmon is pretty cool. One end of the net has to be attached to the beach, the other to a bouy out in the water. You leave the net out for a bit and then pull it in with the fish.
While the guys worked, we all had a lot of fun hanging on the beach.

We headed back to clean the fish we caught, about 25 lbs of sockeye fillets in a little over an (that's about $600 worth of salmon that is now in my freezer) and the eagles went CRAZY!

A played in the park across the street while the guys worked, and then the eagles struck.....
"My fish! Back off!"
Suddenly over 50 eagles were swarming the park, fighting for a piece of the salmon this guy grabbed.

Trust me, eagle fights are loud!
They are amazing creatures though, and we are so blessed to live in a place were this is an everyday sight!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The "real Alaska" the last post!

Here they are...the last of the "real Alaska" pics. 

The last full day of our trip, we went 4-wheeling before hopping the train to Fairbanks and flying back to Dutch.

It was so much fun...and the perfect ending to this awesome experience.

So If you enjoyed a look at the "real Alaska" drop me a comment and let me know! We are back home and into the swing of things again. We headed out tonight a netted some sockeye salmon, had a bonfire with friends, and watched about 100 eagles swarm around us as we cleaned the fish. It reminded me of why I love this place even though the fog rolled in and we were bundled up in sweats. Good night all...and thanks for reading!

Monday, June 25, 2012

The "Real Alaska" part 6- Dog Sledding

Denali National Park is the only National Park patrolled by dog sled. That's right, in the winter they patrol all 6 million acres in 40 below weather by sled. Amazing! 

We had a chance to visit the dogs on Friday and see a demonstration. It was pretty awesome. A has decided she wants a dog team now and wants to race dogs sleds when she grows up. For now, she is collecting stuffed Huskies, 5 so far...Little Ben, Yukon, Kobuk, Kiska, and Lucy. Guess that will have to do.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The "real Alaska" part 5- Denali Tundra Wilderness Tour

Our visit to Denali was wonderful We all had such a great time and wonderful warm weather to boot! A and I both now want to move to the real Alaska, we might freeze in the inter but at least we would warm up in the summer!

We stayed at the McKinley Village Lodge and on Friday we took the Tundra Wilderness Tour. It is an 8 hour round trip ride on a bus down the only road in the 6 million miles of park. Our guide was extremely knowledgeable and we were able to catch glimpses of moose, bear, caribou, fox, and big horn sheep (although those were to far away for me to snap a good pic of. But all the rest we saw up close and personal...and even better we saw 9 bears! 3 moms, and 6 cubs.

I am definitely hoping to be able to visit again one day and bring my mom with. I know she would love this!
 We had to be on the bus at 6:15am, but the early wake up was worth it, when 5 mins into our trip we saw a mom and baby moose enjoying breakfast not 20ft from the side of the bus.

 If you look closely you will see that the trees here actually lean a bit. This is called the "drunken forest" and it is cause from the soil on top of the permafrost slowly sliding.
 Our first sight of Denali, a beautiful and clear morning.

 This little guy ran right up to the bus.

 It was so beautiful and untouched!

 Dwarfing the surrounding mountains, the great one rises up 20,320ft. The tallest mountain in North America.

 The first of many caribou we saw that day.
 It was a warm day and the most of the caribou we saw had decided to cool off in the few remaining snow patches.

 The turn around spot on our tour. Just a majestic view. Pictures do not do it justice.

 More caribou following the snow.

 We spotted this set of bear on the hills side pretty far away from our bus, but just a few minutes later we got the sight of a lifetime, with a bear family just feet away from the side of the road.

Denali offers several different excursions, this is the second to longest one. The longest is a 12 hour round trip! But this was spectacular and the chance to see these animals up close was well worth the long drive. I was amazed at how well A did...and I think everyone on the bus was as well. She was the youngest on the bus by at least 13 years LOL, but she enjoyed it every bit as much as we did.

Right now I am sitting in the Anchorage airport waiting to catch our flight to Dutch, but don't worry, I am not done with posting vacation pics yet. Stay tuned for dog sledding, 4-wheeling, and more train ride fun!