Winter collage

Winter collage

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Thoughts from the Alaska Highway...(long post)

Hello to everyone from Kluane Lake in the Yukon...it is after 10:00 p.m. as I write this...the sun is still over the mountains and it will never grow dark during the night. We are set up on the shores of one of my very favorite camping areas. Except for the sound of the gentle wind coming in off the lake, it is so quiet. (Well - I say Mr. Outback & I both definitely heard grizzly bear sounds as we walked our 2 shelties - we immediatelt turned around and headed back to the more populated area) Everyone here has travelled far to reach this point...some returning from their Alaska adventure, others, like us, heading that way. Our conversations with each other always begin with "are you going or are you coming from?" The Alaska Highway in either direction requires a driver's focused attention so most all our camping neighbors are settled in for the night like us. Tomorrow we head to the border and Tok, Alaska. The next part of the drive is traditionally the slowest and most difficult as you encounter many frost heaves and sections of nothing but gravel. Towing a 34 foot 5th wheel calls for extra caution.

We have had a tough start to this long anticipated journey - by the time we reached North Dakota on the 17th, it was obvious little Molly - our senior sheltie, was not doing well - in the weeks leading up to our departure, her appetite had started to decrease, though she still was active and responsive. A clear-to-go Wellness exam from our home vet made things seem in order. An overworked & busy vet in North Dakota recommended a couple of things, none of which worked. Early in the morning of June 19, as we prepared to leave Havre, Montana and head to the Canadian border, Molly had grown worse & we found a kind and compassionate vet who examined her, looked us straight in the eye and said it was best to let her go due to rapidly declining. With many tears and gentle touches we stayed with our Molly as she crossed the Rainbow Bridge. Our two remaining fur kids know something is very different but are travelling well, though needing extra attention which we give.

Post update - June 28 - we have arrived in Wasilla Alaska and have been reunited with our Dave & Jena - finally have a steady wifi (??) and trying to catch up on all the news. We will stay here for 10 days & then everyone heads down to Homer for halibut (yum!!!). Right now laundry, grocery shopping and rv cleaning are on the list...

Many photos have been added the last 12 days - the best has been taken by Mr. Outback (from the safety of our truck!) as this beautiful grizzly posed for us 75 feet away - he looks so huggable until you see the claws on those big paws...

Back later - wishing each of you good days and good times.
Pat in Wasilla, Alaska

 

12 comments:

Margaret said...

Oh, how I envy you. A person could get lost in the beauty of Alaska. I hope you have a wonderful stay, and a safe trip back.

Barbara said...

I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your beloved pet on the first leg of your journey. Keep your chin up and smile often :) You have so much to look forward to. That grizzly photo is amazing!

Susan said...

So sorry to hear about Molly, they are such precious little friends. Your trip is sounding wild and adventurous, and I hope the bears keep their distance. Stay safe. X

Kyle said...

So sorry you had a sad beginning to your wonderful trip. But now you've connected with your kids and the adventures continue. Mr. Outback's photo is outstanding. Can't wait until you both share more.

Janet O. said...

What a difficult way to begin your adventure.
Alaska is a place I have never visited, but would love to go. Have friends in several places (including Homer and Wasilla), but never seem to get up that way.
Great Grizzly photo! Look forward to more of your travels, and I wish I could join you for that halibut!! : )

Aunt 'Reen said...

Sending comforting hugs to you Pat - so sorry to hear the loss of your sweet Molly!
Your adventure so far sounds like something I'd watch on National Geographic channel.
Happy to hear you arrived safely in Wasilla!
Hope the remainder of your time there is wonderful!

Kathy ... aka Nana said...

I am so sorry to hear about your sweet Mollie. Glad you've made it there ... enjoy!

barbara woods said...

so sorry you lost your dog, but stay safe around those bears

Rebecca in AK said...

Well I am glad you made it up here safe and sound, but oh such a heartbreaking beginning for your journey. Great photo of the bear.

Michelle Huddleston said...

I hope your very sad beginning becomes more beautiful every day!

Pondside said...

I'm late to this, Pat, and knew about your loss but it was still a very sad thing to read.
By now you've had your halibut........so I'll go on to read your next post.

Lemon Verbena Lady said...

Hi TO, I am in the way, way back of the station wagon and have not been paying much attention! So sorry for Molly's passing, but she enjoyed her life with you and Mr. Outback to the fullest I would guess! Wow, that grizzly is an impressive beast! Will comment on your last post next. xo