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  • Alaska 2008: Day 10 (Train to Anchorage)

    Posted on June 18th, 2008 Jeff Keller 4 comments

    After ten days in Alaska, it was time to head south to prepare for our trip
    home. We rode the Alaska Railroad back to Anchorage, sitting in Holland America’s
    fancy McKinley Explorer cars. The ride was incredibly scenic, but very slow
    (8 hours). After two days in a row sitting in buses for 7+ hours, I wasn’t
    interested in sitting around again, so I spent most of the trip on the platform
    downstairs, watching the scenery go by.

    This is the final installment of my trip photos, as we fly home to SFO today
    (Wednesday). I hope you enjoyed the trip as much as I did!

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  • Alaska 2008: Day 9 (Denali National Park)

    Posted on June 17th, 2008 Jeff Keller 4 comments

    Day 9 of my trip was billed as the best day to see Alaska’s wildlife. While
    it wasn’t quite the "zoo" that I was expecting, we still saw Denali’s most
    famous residents: brown bears, caribou, dall sheep, and moose. Our tour lasted
    nearly seven hours, with the excellent driver/guide making the time pass quickly.

    Before that, though, we took a trip to the park’s sled dog kennel. Denali
    still uses sled dogs to patrol the park in the winter, and we got to meet and
    greet most of the dogs. They’re all remarkably friendly, and they seem to love
    what they do. They did a little demo with 5 dogs on a gravel trail, and they
    were really moving fast. It was also funny to see how excited the dogs
    when they were getting the sled ready… lots of barking "choose me!".

    Pictures of everything after the link!

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  • Alaska 2008: Day 8 (Driving to Denali)

    Posted on June 17th, 2008 Jeff Keller 1 comment

    We were up way too early on Sunday, as the cruise portion of our tour had
    come to an end. We left the Zaandam at around 7:45am and were quickly loaded
    onto a nice motorcoach for a grueling 8 hour ride to Denali National Park.
    The ride was scenic, but the driver wouldn’t stop talking, much to the dismay
    of his passengers.

    I managed to actually take a nap, and when I woke up, we
    were about to stop to take a look at Mt. McKinley. The mountain is not a common
    sight in Alaska, but we lucked out today — we could see it fairly well. A
    while later we pulled into the "town" of Denali, where we checked in to our
    hotel.

    There’s really no "night" this time of year — the sun is up something
    like 20 hours a day. It’s a bit odd being outside at 11pm with "afternoon"
    lighting still in effect.

    I’ve got a few interesting pictures from our long bus journey after the link.

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  • Alaska 2008: Day 7 (College Fjord)

    Posted on June 16th, 2008 Jeff Keller 3 comments

    The last full day of our cruise was spent in College Fjord. This fjord was
    as smooth as glass, and filled with seals, otters, whales, porpoises, and birds
    of all types. There were quite a few glaciers to see, too, though there was
    no dramatic calving like in Glacier Bay.

    Photos from Day 7 of my Alaska trip after the link below.

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  • Alaska 2008: Day 6 (Glacier Bay)

    Posted on June 14th, 2008 Jeff Keller 2 comments

    We spent our sixth day cruising through Glacier Bay, Alaska. If you like glaciers,
    this is the place to be. After the link I’ve got a bunch of photos, plus some
    cool movies of glaciers calving.

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  • Alaska 2008: Day 5 (Skagway)

    Posted on June 13th, 2008 Jeff Keller 2 comments

    On day 5, we stopped in Skagway. Like Ketchikan, the city itself isn’t very
    exciting. There are some quaint old buildings, though most of them contain
    chain jewelry stores, or tacky t-shirt shops. It kind of felt like Fisherman’s
    Wharf at home.

    The highlights of the day included a trip on the White Pass & Yukon Railroad,
    and our departure from the port. I’ve got pictures of everything after the
    link.

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  • Alaska 2008: Day 4 (Juneau)

    Posted on June 12th, 2008 Jeff Keller 2 comments

    On day 4 of our cruise, we stopped in Juneau. My folks went off on a whale
    watching / glacier trip early in the morning, and my excursion wasn’t until
    the afternoon, so I was on my own for a change. I took a tram to the top of
    Mt. Roberts, walked around the town, ate lunch, and then it was time for my
    "Photo Safari". We took a special boat designed for photographers out into
    the inlets surrounding Juneau. After that, we had a land portion near the Mendenhall
    Glacier.

    Needless to say, lots of photos were taken — and you can see my favorites
    after the link.

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  • Alaska 2008: Day 3 (Ketchikan)

    Posted on June 10th, 2008 Jeff Keller 4 comments

    Today will probably end up as the most adventurous day of our trip to Alaska.
    The highlight, as you can see, was a floatplane trip to Misty Fjords National
    Monument. This was my first time in a turboprop (a 1953 Dehavilland Otter),
    and surprisingly, I was more relaxed than I am on a commercial jetliner! We
    also spent some time walking around Ketchikan, the self-proclaimed Salmon Capital
    of the World.

    Hit the link below to see all of today’s action!

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