timistravels

My job allows me to visit a lot of Alaska on a yearly basis. I wanted to capture the trips in one location!

5 moose sightings, 4 hour car ride, 3 books on tape, 2 plane flights and 1 large Ice Tea!

Left Juneau on early morning flight and it was POURING rain, a huge disappointment after all the snow we had been getting.  I got about 3 miles from the house and wondered why the road was so blurry, and suddenly realized I did not have my glasses on!  Ran back to the house and grabbed them and still had plenty of time to get to the airport by 6:15 a.m. (reminder, I am NOT a morning person).

Flight flight, Juneau to Anchorage was smooth, with a short stay in the ANC airport before flight from ANC to Fairbanks.  Landed about 11 a.m. and it was COLD!  Signs were reading -33, but it had warmed up from -50 days earlier.

Stopped at a store where I had hoped I could purchase a “skhoop” down skirt, it is fancier than a pair of snow pants, but serves the same purpose, another layer in the cold weather.  Sadly they only had S and M, the same sizes that the store in Juneau had.  Oh well, by next winter I will own one!

Off to Tok, (sounds like Coke) a 211 mile drive.  Had to balance getting a large Ice tea for the ride with the thought of “where will I go to the bathroom if I have to”, so in the end took a tea with me, BUT only drank ½.

The first 2 hours of the drive is on Highway 2, and there were several other drivers on the road.  I passed cars every 10 minutes or so.  I also came upon a jackknifed semi-truck who had simply miscalculated how icy the roads were.  I slowed as I approached him, but he gave me the thumbs up and I continued on my way.

Once I passed through the town of Delta Junction I hopped onto Highway 1 or the Alaska Highway I was suddenly virtually alone.  For the 100+ miles I believe I only saw 2 other cars and those were at the end closer to my final destination of Tok.  However, I was NOT alone on this highway.  I saw several moose along this ride.  There was a cow (female moose) and her calf about 1000 feet down the road.  Thankfully it was a bright clear day so I was not worried that I would come upon one in the middle of the road without  warning!

Arrived to Tok with no issues and there was still daylight.  It was cold but no wind so that helped.  My room at Young’s Hotel was basic, clean and nice, and actually quiet UNTIL 11 p.m. when a large truck pulled into the lot beside my room and individuals checked into the room next to me.  I began to hear dogs barking and wondered what the heck was going on… it was not until the next morning that I realized it was a “Dog Team” from Canada who I assume were on their way to run the Yukon Quest.  The funniest part were the dozen circles of ‘yellow snow” that filled the parking lot in the morning!

Tok is the headquarters of the Alaska Gateway School District. AGSD encompasses 28,000 square miles  (about the size of South Carolina) extending north from the Alaska Range to the Yukon River and Canadian border. Schools are located in the communities of

  • Dot Lake
  • Eagle, (a fly to only site 7 months of the year)
  • Mentasta Lake
  • Northway
  • Tanacross
  • Tetlin
  • Tok

Pictures include, moose, signs around Tok, some of the scenery and my car plugged in so that it would stay charged in the deep cold weather.

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