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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Alaska


Ok...so it has been about a million years since I have posted on here. Life has finally calmed down to the point where our heads are not spinning and hopefully it will stay that way.

Dan and I recently returned from a trip to McNeil River Bear Sanctuary. Check out this link for more information: http://www.openroad.tv/video.php?vid=227
We were basically out in the wild with grizzly bears! Yippee.

Summer in Alaska is very different than anywhere else we've ever lived! The sun never sets and therefore it is just as hard to go to bed as it was to get out of bed during the winter months. The temperatures never truly reach "summer" heat in my opinion but the 60s/70s are pleasant. Just make sure that you do not pack away your winter clothing, as it is still possible to get snow on the mountains. They call this snow, termination dust! I guess to signify the termination of summer.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Our time in Alaska






Well...I am certainly not a good blogger. I usually only post when I am feeling super motivated. Today is not one of those days but I am feeling obligated to let everyone know about our new home.

Since we set out on the ferry we have travelled many an Alaskan mile and settled into a home on Fort Richardson. We were blessed to received post housing within days. The housing is brand new and very nice. The only downside is that it only has a 1 car garage; up here that is a big deal. However, we've invested in engine block, oil pan and battery heaters. As long as you remember to plug your car in everything is fine. If you forget -- oops!

The temperatures around here dropped sharply the week of Christmas and remained between -20/-30 degrees for two weeks. Then they sky rockets to +45 degrees. This temperature jump melted much of the snow but also included strong winds that made inches of ice. If you can imagine 2 inches of slush onto of an ice rink or walking upon ice water, then you have a good idea of what things were like.
I was so proud I made it more than a month before I had my first fall. Tuesday I fell walking from the chapel to my car. Everywhere you go you are walking on ice. So when you are begin to slide you are on the ground before you even know what has happened. Due to the excessive amounts of water on top of the ice I was soaking wet and had to go home and change. There's nothing like wet pants at 15 degrees with a breeze!

Dan's job is going as well as expected. He is scheduled to take command in February. Before that happens he will attend the Artic Cold Weather training course at Fort Greely (a very cold place). Don't worry they have tons of gear -- so if used properly he shouldn't be too miserable. Shortly there after he is will shipping off to Fort Benning for Airborne school, hooah!

Friday, January 2, 2009

We reached a new record!

Driving home tonight from post we saw our first Bull Moose, antlers covered in snow! It was amazing. Then we looked down at the dashboard thermometer and we hit a lifetime record of -31! Holy cow, believe me -- it's cold.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Alaska Marine Highway

Surprisingly enough we made it through the entire list of things we wanted to do while in Washington before catching the ferry in Bellingham. The ferry leg of the journey went very well. The ferry is nice (although very different from cruise ship). Our stateroom is quite cozy but we've made it work so far.

We left Bellingham at 7PM on Friday afternoon and made our first stop in Ketchikan on Sunday morning. The town was interesting. We made the 5.5 mile round trip walk into town to explore. Nothing was open! We finally found a place to eat lunch and it cost us $45! We're definitely not in Missouri anymore. We took pictures of some of the totem poles, the welcome sign and Creek Street, famous for stilted houses.

The ferry set sail again 4 hours later and made two very short stops but before reaching Juneau this morning. Juneau is a very beautiful city with much to offer. The people are very friendly and helpful. We explored Mendenhall Glacier, visited the UA campus, toured downtown and drove across the channel to Douglas Island. Douglas Island was the original tent city during the Gold Rush.

Tomorrow we board a new ferry to make the cross gulf trip toward Anchorage. We will make one stop in Yakatat before docking in Whittier. We'll send more pictures as soon as possible.