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The Swiss Miss
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Been extremely lucky with our 2d aurora quest to Fairbanks. One night out and it was a spectacular show! Really amazing, by far more impressive than I ever expected. (No pics of them at the moment, since I can only post cellphone pics now).

Fairbanks was frickin cold, but after our warm winter back at home I loved to finally have cold snow n ice under my feet, breathe the cold dry clean air...
And ice can be so beautiful :thumbsup:


Frozen landscape, frozen Cheena river


Heading south, the flat gives way to Alaska Range; with Denali in the clouds. Yay - mountains!


Absolutely love Anchorage so far. Out of my B&B window I see snowy mountains, evergreens and an ocean... wow, could stay here forever.

Absolutely love it so far, been blessed by continuous bluebird, met only very friendly people, oh, and all the great seafood - I'm in heaven.
:hope: hope, luck continuous to stay on my side and the snow will be good :yahoo:
 

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The Swiss Miss
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7,441 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Great scenic drive along Turnagain Arm


Spring has definitely sprung up here after a very mellow winter (dang). Bluebird, 30°F, on sea level there's only a tiny crust of snow, some trees are already blossoming (are these willow catkins?)


... and look who's aready awake

(I'm cheating :) That's at a sanctuary for orphaned/wounded wildlife)

However, these guys are getting prepared to roam freely in Akaska again by next year


And here we go: that's how Alyeska looks from below.

Bit concerned by the little snow, however, they opened North Face just tday, so it seems to be good. Gonna check tomorrow.
Got word from locals, that Turnagain Pass is brilliant, so I'm also looking forward to hiking there. Weatherforecast says nonstop bluebird the next 5 days :yahoo:
 

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The Swiss Miss
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Discussion Starter #10
Not yet, just arrived today. Gonna check Alyeska tomorrow - anyone else here riding there tomorrow? - since they just opened North Face; and then it seems as if there's the entire week good weater to tour :)
 

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The Swiss Miss
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7,441 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
The day in Alyeska started a bit slow (btw: I absolutely love the Alaskan way of starting the day late: lifts open at 10:30). Whatever had been good on the outer areas has been tracked out the last days, thus off groomers there were just huge hardpack moguls. But groomers are wide and very well maintained, you know, this type of snow

and the background - blue ocean and blue sky - compensated a bit for the lack of fresh


Met very nice people on the lift, first just wanting to show us some fun runs, then riding all day together. Had a splendid day riding all over Alyeska, and fun aprés. Yet again amazing, how great ppl can turn a slow day into a memorable one :thumbsup:
And finally hot tub surrounded by evergreens and snow, and fresh cookies at our marvelous B&B- life's good!
 

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The Swiss Miss
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7,441 Posts
Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Riding cats n dogs

Two very different types of transportation, but resulting in the same fun :)

Getting ready for sundown mushing (Fairbanks) in huge Alaskan parkers. I would have freezed with my 4 layers Arc'teryx stuff! Hardly could move anymore but was cosy warm all night. Great experience, the dogs were so eager to go, you really were feeling their excitement. And so friendly and cuddly! Never had expected to find working-dogs to be so pet-ish. Great dogs, great mushers! Thanks Outlander for the hint to go there :thumbsup:



Down in the south: first encounter with snowmachines. Ha, that was great fun as well! Such a pity that our country is too small n too crowded for them. Would have loved to ride that cat in some less tracked snow!



The sad thing: we came here to find piles of snow, but the lack of snow is obvious all around. These mountains should be covered by snow, no bushes should be visible. Every local we speak to keeps telling the same story "that's the worst winter since I moved here".


But, at least we have this:


Packed the backpack n split for Turnagain Pass tomorrow :yahoo:
 

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Not quite reformed yet
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Glad you're having an awesome trip! The pics look amazing! I was curious,.. when I was in the service we had a stopover in Anchorage before heading to Okinawa for a 6 month tour. Is the big assed, stuffed Polar Bear still on display in the airport? :laugh: (....that's all I ever got to see of Alaska!) :(
 

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The Swiss Miss
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7,441 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
I was curious,..* when I was in the service we had a stopover in Anchorage before heading to Okinawa for a 6 month tour.* Is the big assed, stuffed Polar Bear still on display in the airport? :laugh: (....that's all I ever got to see of Alaska!) :(
Yes, it's still there. And even a bigger one is displayed in the entrance of Alyeska Hotel. Scary, and beautiful!


Get after it. "Worst winter" is a relative term. I bet you find plenty of great stuff to do at Turnagain. Enjoy the ride.
Yea, you're right :). The awsome thing now is that the snowpack is so incredibly stable (low avy level in treeline and alpine level, which - according to locals - is very rare, guides took us into an incredible great run, unthinkabe to do back at home :thumbsup:
After the next dump, snowpack will be very unstable due to all this hoar, beautiful as it is




Enjoy it, lady. You're in the promised land!
O yea, we are. Even though not surrounded by meters of snow, the entire experience is so great! People are so relaxed and friendly, traffic is amazingly relaxed. It's as if everybody here has all the time in the world. Perfect ends of a perfect days in a hot tub


...followed by an splendid dish of seafood. Been eating fresh scallops, halibut, king crab, and salmon every evening. Love Alaska in every way!

BTW: It's almost like home, just different :laugh:
 

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Not quite reformed yet
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Yes, it's still there. And even a bigger one is displayed in the entrance of Alyeska Hotel. Scary, and beautiful!
Oh wow! I went thru there in '83! That suckers well over 30 years old!! Lol!


O yea, we are. Even though not surrounded by meters of snow, the entire experience is so great! People are so relaxed and friendly, traffic is amazingly relaxed. It's as if everybody here has all the time in the world. Perfect ends of a perfect days in a hot tub


...followed by an splendid dish of seafood. Been eating fresh scallops, halibut, king crab, and salmon every evening. Love Alaska in every way!

BTW: It's almost like home, just different :laugh:

:( What? No bikini selfies? :( ;)
Oh yeah!!! I remember getting fresh caught salmon off the boats in NorCal! It's awesome, innit?!!! Can only imagine how good the halibut and king crab is! Enjoy!



(...oh and have fun, be careful, be safe!) :thumbsup:
 

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The Swiss Miss
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7,441 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Been to Turnagain Pass on Tin Can and did Ted's Run. Continuous bluebird!
Some impressions

There's still lot of untracked snow :)


Up and up, step by step - and there's still a lot of air. Haha, back at home, after a 1000m ascent, the air would arlready become thin, but here you begin at almost sea level.


Wonderful panoramic view! Never ending mountains and nothing man made to see


Checking the north facing drop in :yahoo: snow was powdery, no crusts, such a great long run, worth every step!
 
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