Dear Blog Readers,
I have so many photos from my recent Alaska trip, that I want to share them with a minimum of narrative. I was lucky to have had the three beautiful days during the week I was there. Looking at the weather since my trip, it’s been snowy wintry weather ever since.
Above is Danali, aka Mount McKinley, the highest mountain in the western hemisphere at over twenty thousand feet. It’s relatively rare to see it free from clouds. Generally, it creates its own weather in the form of clouds as seen below.
Along the 105 mile unpaved Danali Highway, one could view the arctic wilderness stretching for miles without any human inhabitants.
The photo above was taken on a different day, more typical of the cloudy weather that was more common than the sunny days. Below are photos from our other glorious clear day, when we cruised out of the port of Seward along the Kanai Fjords National Park.
The glaciers above are called “hanging glaciers”. They were much larger in the past, but have receded up the mountainside from the ocean below. Wildlife was plentiful on our fjord cruise, including seals, otters, and a bow whale.
The next photo is of a delightful Rumanian immigrant named Carmen, who was selling her homegrown tomatoes for seven dollars a pound. She liked me and gave me a bag of free tomatoes, so I gave her a tip/gift of seven dollars. Everybody was happy.
The following is my photo of a photo in the excellent Anchorage museum. It shows a native woman drying salmon in the traditional manner. My cousin’s husband had some of this salmon from his village. It was the texture of beef jerky, but was a dry and concentrated salmon taste. The drying of salmon in the Fall was vital for the First Peoples to be able to survive the long cold dark winter months.
Here are two photos of native faces. The second one shows a contestant in an “ear-pulling” contest. I don’t really understand it. One can only imagine that those long winter nights yield activities in response to boredom.
Finally, there are a collection of photos of the aurora borealis, the Northern Lights, which looks like the best reason to visit Alaska in winter.