Saturday, June 14, 2014

paddle into Walker Cove...

 first a few more on land.  lots of driftwood in Ketchikan so we had lovely beach fires every night.  the campfire is one of the best parts about camping with friends.  loved this picture actually.  these are all still from the little powershot.  the better shots will come please be patient.
 this little banana slug was near our tents i believe.
 it was a nice camp spot.  Scott and i camped here 2 nights many years ago when we were on our first kayak trip.  i didn't recall but i guess our kayak class was taken through the university in southeast.  we had a night on the local pool to learn how to recover a flipped kayak.  it's not easy and i hope i never have to do it.  stay afloat is always my goal.  i don't do anything crazy and safety is always a priority.
 at that time we did 2 nights and 3 days so really one full day of paddling into Walker Cove. i do have wonderful memories of the big cove and the scenery it offered.  so happy i could bring friends back to this amazing place and let them experience it.
 i think Sandra told me the other day this trip was perfect.  it really was...we got incredibly lucky with the weather.  the guides were amazing.  my hoped plan worked out.  sometimes everything just works out...
 tents in the woods.  overall i slept pretty good.  i always wake up early when i'm out camping.  i took benedryl, sleeping in close proximity to snorers...i'm probably somewhat used to that anyway, Rio can rock the house.
 tube worms.
 have been a bit tired since returning.  probably need one major sleep day to feel totally caught up.  work has been super busy since i got back so that has been killer.
 today i did get Blossom out to Kincaid for a more real walk.  we did a loop off the Jodphur Trail system. they have cut tons of side mountain biking trails into the park so the Jodphur area is much more heavily used than it was previously.  the main trails are still pretty clear.  you can hear bikers in the air as you walk though, flying past unseen.
 Scott out there.  of course, i get there and realized i'd forgotten Blossoms tennis ball and chuck it...what a terrible doodle mom i am.  thankfully, my distress was overheard by a woman who had just pulled up next to me and she offered a spare tennis ball to us.  thank you random nice lady at the park!!
 loved the colours on the rocks.  CJ was explaining it to us.  didn't catch it all, the white is leached calcium.
 much of the coastline was just these rocks that jutted right down into the water.  you really had to plan your bathroom breaks as these were not places one could stop in a kayak obviously.  the first time we came here, which was probably in '96 or '97 we were given instructions on how to use your sponge to pee into in case you were out there with no place to pull over.
 no sponges....or nalgeens were soiled and we all managed to survive until there were places to land the boats.  it did make you think before drinking that extra water and i suspect the coffee drinkers were thinking about the lack of landing spots in deciding about that second cup
 Sandra above and below my paddle partner, Janet, below.  you can see the misty part of misty a bit here.  it soon cleared up and we  never got rained on out there.
 a selfie.
 Janet soon got the rhythm of my stopping and starting to take photo's.  we worked well together in the boat.  she picked up on this kayak stuff quickly.  i think people are afraid to do it sometimes, but i'm a big chicken and i do it so it's really as hard as i suspect some folks think it is.
 i think CJ was impressed with my over my head and upside down attempts at photo's..over the years Sandra and i have worked it out and she directs me from behind and as you can see...this came out pretty nice i must say.
 after i walked Blossom i stopped by a few stores to get a Birthday gift for Maddie, as i was meeting with friends at Bear Tooth later to celebrate her big 11 !!
 i had time and i had read that there was a pet expo at the Sullivan arena.  Blossom and i headed over there...the parking lot was packed.  the little advert had said you could bring dogs and i saw someone head that way with a dog as i looked for a parking spot.  as we walked closer though i noted several men in suits at the entrance...then a few folks in street clothes like me walking away.
 turns out we all had been given wrong information by ADN.  i have no idea if there was a dog expo anyway this weekend or if it's going to be on a totally different weekend.  this weekend though the Sullivan Arena is packed with Jehovah Witnesses.  that wasn't where i wanted to be at all.  so i got to dinner early...which was good as i was able to get us a big table.
 we had a nice time out at dinner.  Maddie had one friend there with her, seemed super nice. so i think she was happy.
 the yellow stuff is pollen. it was everywhere...thankfully, i am not sensitive to such things.
 that is Amanda above.
 i have some reading material all picked out for tonight.  it's still early.  "instructions for form 1023- application for recognition of exemption under section 501(3)(c) of the Internal Revenue code".  pretty exciting reading, right?  i can't wait!!  figure i'll just fill out one box at a time and soon it will be mailed off and in the past.
 so many messes in the world. was talking with someone at work the other night about how in a way all this bad news makes you happy that you aren't leaving kids to this uncertain and increasingly violent world.  Iraq is erupting into violence yet again.  just seems that every time you turn on the news or open the paper another nation is in's down right scary.
 of course, out there in Walker Cove we were completely detached from the violence and political unrest...from everything really. it was so peaceful. i think i heard 2 float planes the entire time we were out there at Hut point and Walker Cove.  i love that we can still get out places and have no contact with the world. you don't even really think about what is happening outside of your little world.
 these tree's reflect the tide was funny how they all look like they are kept groomed...just nature.
 the latest research shows polar bears split from brown bears about 400,000 years ago.  brown bears in Southeast Alaska have the closest gene links to Polar Bears.  they postulate that the bears evolved after being stranded on the southeast islands of Admirality, Baranof and Chichagof.  hard for me to tell from the article which came first the polar or the brown.  polar bears had to adapt to be able to eat a diet super high in cholesterol.  they need a lot of fat to stay warm.  nearly half of their body weight is fat.
of course, it will be interesting to see what happens with the warming weather.  there have been some polar bear matings with browns or grizzlys.  i won't be around to see the outcome of our warming world.
 King Cove out on the Aleutians wants to get a road built to Cold Bay.  big runway out there and now there is no road and they feel this endangers them in an emergency.  the road they want is only 11 miles as the communities are apparently 19 miles apart.  they are seperated by Izembek National Wildlife Refuge.  i'm always straddling a fence about these things.  part of me feels that anytime you chose to live remote you must accept the risks of that being able to get to medical attention in a timely manner in the event of an emergency. i also realize that 11 miles is not a huge distance.  of course, out there it is an expensive distance to span due to the remoteness and then one has to consider how few people will be impacted by this expensive 11 mile road. much to consider.  it also runs through a national refuge that is prime bird habitat. i went out to the least as far as the road from King Cove allowed.  not sure there would be heavy enough traffic on the road to impact the birds too very much...obviously, i'm undecided...which is often the case.  i just have never been good at seeing this world in black and's all grey to me.
 my dislike for our current mayor of Anchorage just grows and grows.  he's really annoying at the very least.  guess he recently blasted teachers by just saying stupid stuff.  something about them choosing an easy path to become teachers over pursuing more difficult majors or more difficult professions.  i'm not sure teaching is as easy as Mayor Sullivan thinks it is.  what an idiot...!!  now another guy named Sullivan is trying to take a senate seat.  he's seen as an outsider as he pretends to be some big Alaskan but really hasn't actually made Alaska home, at least not of late.  people up here don't tend to trust what they see as outsiders..will be interesting to see how people vote on that one.
 only one death on Denali so far this year. haven't heard much so things must be going fairly well on the big mountain. haven't had time to drive around...seems like the mosquito's are at their max right now.  can be tough to be outside unless you are on the water or there is a breeze.  gotta keep bug spray handy right now anyway
 we didn't have much for bugs at all at Hut point or at Windstanley on our trip. the most we had was in Rudyerd Bay at Punchbowl.  i had my mosquito hood out and ready but never used it. did do one coat of spray as we headed up the trail that night, but it really wasn't too horrible.

 a few of Bob with the scenic views.
 my neighbor was out planting when i got home tonight.  i have totally neglected my garden for weeks.  eeks!!i should put the weed whacker battery in the charger tonight and at least get that done.  the lawn needs another mowing.  i just have a push mower and so in summer with all the daylight and a wee bit of rain...that lawn needs to be mowed almost twice a week it seems.
 when at the tooth i must have root beer tasty!! we also got group cilantro fries..also a favorite.
 in Alaska you can have an ounce or two of personal marijuana.  bills come along from time to time to increase this or stop it.  with Colorado making marijuana legal it will return.  one thing we should be learning is that there do need to be restrictions.  the paper was talking about concentrated marijuana and products that will be directed towards kids.  i really don't mind if folks want to smoke a wee bit of pot on their days off.  frankly the basic pot  seems much less damaging than what i see from legal alcohol.  tough for me to justify not making some forms of pot legal.  probably good to let Colorado be the guinea pigs and make wise choices when we do legalize it.  there needs to be clear wording and restrictions.
 5 volcano's in Alaska are currently considered active...we have 52 "active" volcano's here but 5 are hot spots right now.  not sure i can say the names of a few of them...lots of earthquakes around Semisopochnoi  i won't even try to pronounce that one.  Cleveland, Veniaminof,  Pavlof and Shishaldin are all working up to eruptions.  that first volcano is really grumbling i guess by earthquake activity anyway.  small quakes, around "2"'s but thursday there were 63 quakes, the day before 22 and the day before that like 15 so increasing for sure.  sometimes this happens but no big eruption follows.  the volcano's of are all monitored as eruptions can really cause trouble for flights that use that route...
 yet another honor killing occurred in Pakistan.  a pregnant woman was killed by relatives.  turns out her lovely husband had killed his first wife so that he could marry her. at first her family was supportive and he paid an $800 dowry to them...then they wanted more.  honor killing my arse...they just wanted more money.  just so nuts how little they value the female members of their family.
 Hockey has been good for me...the Aces have won the Kelly Cup Championship and the Los Angeles Kings have taken the Stanley Cup.  go Kings!!  go Aces!!
 a few summers back i stayed at the Don Sheldon cabin. the pilot that built the cabin years ago passed away from cancer many years back.  this past week the wife he left behind also passed away, Roberta.  her father was also a well known Alaskan Bush Pilot.  she has allowed the mountain house to be rented out all these years.  not sure how often she went up there after the death of her husband or how often their kids go there if at all.  will the cabin stay in their family?  it's perched on the only private land holdings in the Denali National Park.

 have always loved the mist that drapes over these amazing mountains and was happy that we had that day of it before the clouds lifted and blue skies took over the land.
 picked one of Ray Trolls shirts out for Bob's birthday, he must have really liked it as he and Tanya returned and got scott the same one and gave it to him tonight. it is a cool shirt.  gotta love Ray Troll.  his art is quirky and cool.  they got Scotts signed. i didn't have time to do that for Bob.
 more trees draped with moss.
 finally a place to land the boats, rest, eat lunch...enjoy the day from the land for a bit.
 lots of beautiful flowers too!!
 these are chocolate lillies. Tanya is always my flower identifier.  she loves her wildflowers!!
off to read about form 1023..i know you are all jealous!!  i'll let you know how my reading goes..very exciting!!  thankful for today... 1.  the nice lady who gave me a tennis made Blossoms walk so much more fun for her.  rio stayed home.  2. light rain coming and going for walk but none on the walk really.  3. katie for helping with the articles...!!  anyone else want to volunteer?

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