Thursday, April 21, 2016

Weekend Fun

We went to one of the many little park areas along the Eagle River this weekend. Our plan was to go to the Nature Center, but the little parking lot was overflowing, so instead we stopped at one of the Eagle River parks. This is the first time I've seen, touched, and walked on black beach sand. What is up with that? Tom taught me that this is actually from Volcanic activity. Cool.  Well, cool as long as we don't have lava pouring our way.

Bonnie and I are slow when it comes to walking and "adventuring." 
So Tom always likes to run off ahead to see what we may encounter, if Bonnie can maneuver it, that sort of thing. It's fun to see him up on mountains or doing his climbing thing off in the distance. 


 Bonnie had a blast picking up rocks and tossing them in the river.
And giggling the whole time.

 Tom was busy finding his own rocks to skip. He's really good at that!
Mine just skip once, maybe twice. He's go on and on.
Below he's showing me what a good skipping rock looks like.

Just make yourself comfortable, Bonnie. Don't worry about the black mud getting on your bottom. Your pants can be washed.

Me and Bonnie checking it all out.

Time to go.
What else can we get into today?

I think a visit to the Alaska Wild Berry Products store is in order. They have a chocolate waterfall. And fudge. And all kinds of fun stuff to look at. They even have Alaska themed scrapbooking supplies. 

Watch out, Bonnie!

Tom posted this on Facebook and said, "I'm pretty sure Bonnie doesn't know what's behind her."

My bother, Scott, commented, "She knows, but supermodels are professional and won't show their emotions until after the perfect shot is taken." 

LOL  I love my family's humor.

Look at all this fudge and chocolate goodness!
We bought some chocolate covered gummy bears and some chocolate peanut butter covered pretzels.


More goodness happening at home this weekend.
We have learned this is the BEST way to cook bacon!

Ginger loves sitting by the fire!

And looking for wildlife.

They both love laying in the sunshine.

Wonder what kind of adventure we can find next weekend?
Until next time....

Monday, April 18, 2016

Quick Links to our Travel Move Posts by Day

2016 Move

Day 1 - South Carolina
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7 - Alaska

Alaska Move 2016 - Day 7

Day 7 

April 8, Friday

Amazingly beautiful scenery!

We can see Alaska!!! Almost to the USA Border!

Mary Ann is sitting up like a little person.

Meanwhile, Ginger is passed out on Xanax in preparation for the USA Alaskan border.


We made it home! Not unloading tonight though. Heading to Fred Meyer for air mattresses and calling it a day.

Day 7 Recap

Travel Time: 7:00am - 5:30pm
Yukon, USA Border at Alaska
Started: Hanes Junction, Yukon, Canada
Ended: Eagle River, Alaska, USA
600 Miles
Wildlife: Moose, Eagle

2016 Move Quick Links
Day 1 - South Carolina
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7 - Alaska

Alaska Move 2016 - Day 6

Day 6 

April 7, Thursday

The ALCAN (Alaska / Canadian Highway) is gorgeous! Makes us so excited and eager to get to our home in Alaska.

We stopped on the side of the road here to observe the Bison for a few minutes. I was in the backseat with the dogs, and Ginger did her normal screaming hello at them. At first they really didn't care, but then I guess they got spooked because they all started running off. Thankfully, they headed away from the truck instead of toward it. That could have been ugly.

We pulled over at a rest area so Tom could take a power nap.  Then this happened. I'll let him tell you in his own words....

What a day. We decided to call it ended in Haines Junction. I'm just too much in sleep deficit to continue across the border. As some have seen, we stopped at a rest area so I could take a power nap. About an hour later, I made my normal walk around to check things out and heard something hissing at me. Knowing that snakes don't really exist here, I knew I had a flat. About 15 minutes later, my Nascar skills were tested and complete and we were on our way again.
As we approached Haines Junction, I made the executive decision to stop here. We pulled into the Alcan Motor Inn and I went in to get a room lined up. All was well and I returned to the truck to move it to its resting place for the night. We all disembarked and headed to the room, and I returned to the truck for the ritual luggage grab. As I passed the trailer, I heard another snake. Then I remembered there aren't snakes here. Dammit.

Day 6 Recap

Travel Time: 7:00am - 6:00pm
Alberta, British Columbia, Yukon
Started: Toad River, Alberta, Canada
Ended: Hanes Junction, Yukon, Canada
580 Miles
Wildlife: Bison, Stone Sheep, Fox

2016 Move Quick Links
Day 1 - South Carolina
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7 - Alaska

Alaska Move 2016 - Day 5

Day 5 

April 6, Wednesday

Our goal is to reach our new home by Friday.

 British Columbia!

Weigh Station. Tom's tale...
I went inside and had a conversation with them. It wasn't clear if I needed to go through or not. I'm over the minimum weight for stopping, but I'm not officially licensed to pull that much weight so I don't have to stop.

Indian Mountain.  Do you see the Indian's profile? You may have to click on the photo here to make it bigger.

Our stop for the night. Great little cabin we stayed in.

Tom's last thoughts for this day...

Another day of driving is done. We had a good day and made it just over 700 miles. We hit the Alaska Highway (ALCAN), which starts in Dawson Creek, BC, around lunchtime and made it through the first 400 miles of it. Not a hint of snow on the roads and just a bit of snow left in the shady areas. Most of the rivers and lakes are still frozen though, but not for long. Temps hovered around the 40's and low 50's. We expect to hit some snowy roads tomorrow though because the road condition web sites show areas still covered.

We ended up stopping at Toad River Lodge in a cabin by a lake right smack dab in the mountains. It's quite beautiful here! We'll get some pictures tomorrow. We were in too big of a hurry to get here before dark to take any pictures today.

Oh, we saw a herd of caribou and two large groups of stone sheep in just the first part of the mountainous part of the ALCAN. We hope for lots of wildlife action tomorrow.
Side note: we're happy we put the winter tires on. In BC, they are required until April 30th.

Day 5 Recap

Travel Time: 6:00am - 9:00pm
Started: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Ended: Toad River, Alberta, Canada
703 Miles
Wildlife: Stone Sheep, Bison, Caribou, Deer

2016 Move Quick Links
Day 1 - South Carolina
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7 - Alaska

Alaska Move 2016 - Day 4

Day 4 

April 5, Tuesday

So by now we've been in the truck for 4 days.  Things are starting to entertain us that we'd normally ignore.  Like funny road sign names for towns. LOL

A whole lot of nothing to look at for a while.

Tom says we've reached our Milestone. LOL

Woo Hoo! Go fast! (OKay, it's in KPH not MPH)

Moose Jaw?

A town called Drinkwater...

Tom is happy with his decision to have the snow tires put on.


Edmonton construction was nuts. Just sayin'.

And this happened....

So I'm singing along with the radio to "I'm all about that bass," and Tom tells me, "Okay. Stop." Yep. I'm that good. ~Janis' post to Facebook

Ending note by Tom per his Facebook status that night...
It was't quite as good of a day distance wise, but progress was made. I think we finished with about 620 more miles. We only have about 1900 remaining. Bonnie had a great day since I finally got her xBox plugged in. Didn't hear much from her today. smile emoticonTomorrow, we hit the ALCAN. We're pretty excited about that because that's where the beautiful scenery starts. Unfortunately, that also means Janis won't be doing any timely updates since there's little to no cell coverage for the last 1500 miles of the trip. 

Day 4 Recap

Travel Time: 9:30am - 9:00pm
Saskatchewan, Alberta, Canada
Started: Saskatchewan, Canada
Ended: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
627 Miles
Wildlife: Massive Bird Migrations, Bison, Deer

2016 Move Quick Links
Day 1 - South Carolina
Day 2
Day 3
Day 4
Day 5
Day 6
Day 7 - Alaska

Alaska Move 2016 - Day 3

Day 3 - Leaving USA, Entering Canada

April 4, Monday

Bonnie is co-piloting today so I can be in the backseat to try to keep the dogs calm at the Canada border crossing. Hope the Xanax works!


They were so good during the whole trip!

Almost time to stop for snow tires to be put on in North Dakota.

North Dakota!

Snow Tires put on!

The dogs were angels at the border crossing into Canada. The Border Agents loved them. There is a story though. I'm going to let Tom tell it......

Well, that was Canada Border crossing number 17 for me and the worst yet. And by worst, I mean intense, not bad. It was very pleasant and at no time was I worried or anything like that.

We got to the drive thru and answered all the questions. He asked us to pull into the compound lot and come inside with our passports. Another agent asked the same questions plus a few more and then took our passports to do some research as we were asked to sit for a spell.

About 10 minutes later, I was called to an interrogation room where I was asked to empty my pockets. He got a good laugh at my roll of dog poopy bags. He was extremely polite and asked lots of questions about my work history, Alaska history, gun history, etc. Another 10 minutes later, I was told they will be searching the truck and trailer and to hold tight for a bit.

Finally, he and I went to check things out. I took the dogs out of the truck and he asked me to stand in front where he could see me as he searched truck. Just a quick search to make sure that when I got in it and pulled into the exam bay, I didn't have any weapons to grab. Standard precaution. In the bay, he did a quick search of the trailer, but mostly just talked about and played with the dogs. Super nice guy.
Bottom line, they were doing their job and I appreciate it. At no time were they unpleasant. I could definitely think of worse ways to spend an hour. Now, if I had anything to hide, it would have been a rough hour indeed.

Day 3 Recap

Travel Time: 6:30am Monday - 12:30am Tuesday
Iowa, Minnesota, North Dakota, Canada - Saskatchewan 
Started: Charles City, Iowa
Ended: Estevan, Saskatchewan, Canada
811 Miles