Monday, August 20, 2012

Denali N.P. 7-5-2012

We made it to Denali NP.  This is a beautiful Stained glass @ the Wilderness Access Center. And where you sign up & or get your tickets if you signed up on line for the tour bus trips into the park beyond the first 15 miles.

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These were the only Bull Moose we saw on our trip. We saw several female & Baby Moose. We were lucky to get there pix as they were on the move when we saw them in Denali. Moose are members of the deer family. They are the largest member, weighing between 800 & 1500 lbs. And only the male moose have Antlers.

We saw several Grizzly’s. They weigh up to 600 lbs. The Grizzly’s in Denali eat roots, berries, tubers, bulbs & fresh vegetation in season. They also eat ground Squirrels, caribou, moose, & sheep. Grizzlies hibernate from October to April. They very in color from Brown to Blond sometimes brown with blond streaks. The Grizzly’s in Denali don’t get the Salmon other Grizzly’s get because of the river systems there.     

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I had to post these 2 pix. A good scratch & a nap.   Then we have the Caribou. The first two pix are some we saw in the park on the tour bus. The nice close up was one we saw @ the 15 mile turnaround area. It’s probably a male but female also have antlers. Caribou look shaggy in the spring & early summer. By September bull caribou look great with big Antlers & a white chest   

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The idea for the park in this region began in 1906, when Charles Sheldon arrived to study Dall Sheep. There was concern for the sheep's survival because of heavy hunting. thus the concept for a park was developed.  

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This is 2 sculls and antlers found in 2003 near Moose Creek. Two Massive Bull Moose clashed in an effort to establish dominance to earn the right to mate. At some point they became locked & One tine pierced the eye of the other. And so they remained locked until death called them.       

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check the park website 

I’m behind on posting to the blog. This last weekend (8-24-2012) the Denali NP was in the news because for the first time in the parks history a hiker was attacked and killed by a Grizzly. Denali NP is a true Wilderness and can be dangerous. The Grizzly bears and Moose can be dangerous.

In 1980 with only weeks left in his Presidency, Jimmy Carter signed into law legislation that established over 100 million acres of national parks, preserves & wildlife refuges in Alaska. Denali went from two million acres to six million acres.

a pix that’s for sale in the park store.


Denali is the only national park in America with a working Sled Dog kennel. Denali has nearly six million acres of legally designated Wilderness where no mechanized forms of transport are allowed…no snowmachines, no cars, no airplanes can land, no motors. When the park has a choice between flying a load into a remote location or using the dog teams, they will use the park dogs when feasible. They can fly to over see the area if needed but don’t land.

Below are a couple of the dogs & a team set up to do a demo. 

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An example of one of the sleds they might use. And the Pups. They do there own breading and this year they have 3 new pups. They have a You Tube site that you can go to to see the pups. They breed dogs for pulling freight & not for racing so they look a little different than the dogs in the Iditarod race.

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The pups have had a hard day Smile  & below is the you-tube link.

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Safe travels & now on to Fairbanks

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Talkeetna & travel to Denali 8-3 & 4-2012

On our way to Fairbanks we stopped @ the little town Talkeetna. We had been told how interesting it was & they have a Cat for their Mayor? We didn’t see the cat. The town is several old buildings with the typical tourist stuff. There is a town center that has a few bands that play for a couple hrs. in the evening. There were a lot of tourists there to enjoy, it had been a nice sunny day. We only spent the afternoon there & one nite. There are also several places there to book flights to see Denali (Mt McKinley)

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Rv. parking in Talkeetna is not easy esp. for a bigger MH.  We were able to find a spot to park on the river for $20 a nite. No hookups. The next Morning it was raining,  we continued our travels up to see Denali. Along the way there’s a pull off that you can stay @ overnight for $10. It’s a spot you can see Denali  from when it decides to come out of the clouds. We didn’t stay the nite. I think next trip we should.  Denali Viewpoint South (Denali State Park) on Parks Hwy A-134.8 

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At this pull off Steve saw these unusual mushrooms. We don’t know what kind they are but had to take pix for our friends that do mushroom hunting. These are too pretty to be edible but who knows?  

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We have arrived and there are a lot of busses around town. Town isn’t much. We decided to stay @ the Rainbow RV park. They had power & water for I think $70 for 2 nites. We stayed there because it was close to the park & there was a young gal that would walk Yoda while we took the trip into the park. You can only go way into the park by their bus. And the trip can take all day depending on how far you want to travel in. 

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Next post will be the sights we saw in the park.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Musk Ox in Palmer 8-2-2012

I don’t know why but we didn’t spend time in Palmer!

But I wanted to see the Musk Ox.So we took a short drive from Anchorage to see the Musk Ox Farm in Palmer. There is a Non-profit Musk Ox farm there. They are an Ice Age Mammal. Recent genetic research indicates their closest relative could be either the Asian goral or the North American goat.  This herd is being raised & studied to help them survive. Alex Trebek (host of Jeopardy TV show) is a big supporter of the farm. There is also a herd @ the University of Alaska Fairbanks  They are brushed in the spring for there “qiviut” The Finest wool in the world. The young woman giving the tour said when they have there calf they only produce 1 cup of milk a day for the calf. that’s all it needs. And they like it very cold so there outside all winter.

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They had some Scarves & hats for sale but the scarf I liked was very pricy & we spend most of our time in warm weather. It would just sit in a drawer. I’ll save that purchase for another time. 

Anchorage 8-1-2012

Anchorage is I think my least favorite town in Alaska. But it is also the Biggest. I guess I really have enjoyed the smaller towns & Burrows 

Below is the Visitor center located in down town & you have to feed a meter to park. I did have to take a pix of the door going out of a store across from the Visitor center. I doubt there are many of these “F.W.Woolworth” door handles left. I remember shopping with my mom @ these stores. Now this wasn’t a drug store & there wasn’t a lunch counter but such great memories that door handle brings. 

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The small Air Museum was interesting. Steve always enjoys an air museum. Being in Alaska this museum had a lot if Bush pilot artifacts. 

The shell of a PBY they hope to some day have $ & manpower to restore. This hot air basket was used in a flight in Alaska. 

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Alaska Native Heritage Center.  This is not just a Museum It’s an Educational facility for the general public & Native Youth. Alaska’s Native people are divided into 11 distinct cultures, speaking twenty-one different languages. In order to tell the stories of this diverse population, the Alaska Native Heritage Center is organized based on 5 cultural groups, which draw upon cultural similarities or geographic proximity. The roots for this center incorporated in 1989 & opened the center in May 1, 1999

We enjoyed the center & spent a good half a day here. Below are some of the pix we took.   

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These were about all we took time to see in Anchorage. There is also a Zoo & another Museum but we didn’t get to them. Have to save some things for another trip to Alaska.