Exploring The Interior

Posted: Wednesday, August 17, 2011 at 10:51 am
By: Doug Lund
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“Bumpity Bump on the ALCAN highway.”

They even have a song up here about the amazingly awful conditions of the famous road that stretches some 14 hundred miles through Yukon Territory to Delta Junction Alaska. It was built by U.S. Soldiers in less than a year during the early part of World

War II in order to connect the 48 contiguous states with Alaska. It’s not gravel anymore but because of the permafrost, the road heaves up and down with the changing temperatures making it necessary to take motion sickness medicine before attempting the run and wear a helmet to protect your head from concussion from the many times you fly out of your seat and hit the ceiling.  Well, that might be a slight exaggeration but it’s good to have that thoroughfare in our rear view mirror.

I see that presidential candidate; Michelle Bachman, continues to exploit her twisted sense of history. Last June she announced it was good to be in Waterloo, Iowa..hometown of John Wayne when it was actually home for a time to mass murderer John Wayne Gacy.  Then, Tuesday on the campaign trail in South Carolina she wished a happy birthday to Elvis Presley. One slight problem, it’s the anniversary of The King’s death..not birth. I think it is safe to say that Michelle will never be asked to bring cookies to the MENSA meeting.

Anyway, our Holiday Vacations tour director, Dave, who heard me sing an Elvis song during Karaoke night on the cruise ship, though it would be a grand idea for me to help commemorate the passing of Elvis 34 years ago by singing one of his songs for members of our tour group over the bus PA system. I wanted to kill him. I usually don’t sing without music or some sort of distilled stimulant but agreed to try on one condition; someone would have to get at least 25 dollars worth of gold in their pan on our afternoon at the El Dorado Gold Mine outside of Fairbanks.  I hadn’t considered how much the price of gold has escalated since our last visit and, sure enough, several members of our group met or exceeded the minimum requirement for me to sing “Love Me Tender” ..an experience from which I may never recover. Actually, they thought it was okay and I insisted they sing along.

This is really a great bunch of folks we’re traveling with but today will be a challenge as we spend 7 to 10 hours cramped together in a fancy school bus on the Denali Park wildlife tour.

We go through Sarah Palin’s hometown of Wasilla, Alaska on Thursday. I don’t suppose she’ll be home though. She’s travelin’ around the country workin’ at gettin’ out the Republican vote.

I wonder if she’s even heard of Elvis.  

That’s it for now; enjoy a few photos of this magnificent part of the world.

Leaving Yukon Territory into Alaska via Alcan Highway. Mosquitoes the size of hummingbirds here.

Leaving Yukon Territory into Alaska via Alcan Highway. Mosquitoes the size of hummingbirds here.

A beautiful sunny day for the paddlewheel boat ride up the Chena River

A beautiful sunny day for the paddlewheel boat ride up the Chena River

Rare to have sunshine this late in the season. Beautiful.

Rare to have sunshine this late in the season. Beautiful.

The boat tour includes an Indian Village visit where this young lady talks about training sled dogs for racing. She'll be in the Iditerod in 2013.

The boat tour includes an Indian Village visit where this young lady talks about training sled dogs for racing. She'll be in the Iditerod in 2013.

20 hours of daylight does results in huge flowers

20 hours of daylight does results in huge flowers

And cabbages the size of basketballs

And cabbages the size of basketballs

That’s it for now. Only four more days to go.

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10 Comments

  1. Andrea says:

    Doug, great photos! How beautiful! Hope you enjoy the rest of your trip… I don’t know where you find the time to blog, but love it as always.

  2. Eric says:

    If a republican wins the next election, great. However if Michelle Bachman wins, i think we are very, very doomed.

  3. Michael says:

    If Perry wins, the country is equally doomed. The thought of either of them holding the codes to our nuclear arsenal is frightening.

  4. PV says:

    Hi Doug, Looks like you and your 30+ new friends are having a great time. Thanks for the beautiful pictures and hope you share more !

  5. Donn says:

    Funny, Michael. I worry every day with Obama holding the codes.

  6. Sweeps says:

    I particularly loved the picture of “Iditerod Girl”, in her skimpy shorts while all the “southerners” were dressed in long pants and jackets! It’s all relative, innit?? Thanks!

  7. Barbara Telkamp says:

    Thanks for the beautiful pictures, Doug. Lots better than the old black and white ones my dad took when he worked on the Alcan Highway. I suppose that the military was involved but he and many others were civilians too old for the draft who served their country in this way. He had a lot of tales about the difficult work and problems with the permafrost, mud and bears. Thanks again.

  8. Sam Handwich says:

    Too bad politics cannot be kept out of this otherwise interesting blog.

  9. The Big B says:

    Amen, Sam.

  10. Michael says:

    Right, Donn. Perry and Bachmann have a tighter grip on sanity than Obama. That’s a ten on the laugh-meter. Bachmann’s worried about the rise of the Soviet Union, a nation that hasn’t existed in 20 years. Perry wants the head of the Federal Reserve (who was appointed by George W. Bush, by the way) charged with treason. Perry and Bachmann are both as crazy as March hares. Even most Republicans will admit that–all but the looney Tea Party fringe. One lump of sugar or two with that tea, Donn?

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