On the Road Adventures

Sunday, June 21, 2009

18 June - Tok, Alaska

It rained on us pretty much all night, which sure made for good sleeping. While we were outside this morning, I was talking to Dave, when I spied a large mosquito on his head, so I said, “I’m going to smack you in the head.”

And he said, “okay.”

So I swatted the mosquito, and then he said, “So, was there a mosquito there?” Implying I was smacking him upside the head just for fun. Give the number of mosquitoes there, even if I was, chances were I’d get a mosquito for a bonus.

It was a very slow drive from Lake Creek to the Alaska – another day of alternating washboard gravel and frost heaves. There was one point on the road where there was just a forest of little orange flags. They could have just put up a sign saying “Awful road – 10 mph until further notice.”

At last we got to the border, where we stopped for the mandatory group sign shot, and then moved on to the customs booths, where the nice customs guy spent more time petting Gypsy than asking us questions.

A little way down the road is the Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge visitor center. It’s well worth a stop, for the breathtaking view if nothing else. The staff was very informative about the wildlife in the area, and they offer a free CD tour you can pick up, listen to for the drive to Tok, and then turn in at the Visitor Center there.

We made the stop at the Visitor Center and got the 16” tall stack of books, maps, and pamphlets that the volunteer there thought we needed, and then we checked in with the Bureau of Public Lands, and got some good information about state parks, BLM camp sites and other free or cheap places to boondock throughout the state.

Our camp tonight is the Sourdough RV park, where their claim to fame is the sourdough pancake breakfast they serve. They have a pancake toss in the evening. You get two chances to get a day-old pancake into a bucket and if you make it, you get a free breakfast. The guy who checked us in was running it, and he had thought it was funny that two brothers were traveling together, so he had the guys stand there and the offer was if Sharon and I could hit our respective husbands in the back of the head with a pancake, we’d get a free breakfast. I missed both my shots, but Sharon hauled off and smacked Bob in the back of the head like she’d been throwing pancakes at him forever. Then it was turn-around-is-fair-play, and the guys got a shot, so Gerry picked up the whole pile and started chucking them at me. It got a good laugh, but not as good as the one I got when I told him that was all the fun and games he was going to get tonight. Then everyone got in the act, trying to come up with places he could spend the night. Much fun. But since we didn’t win a free breakfast, we had breakfast in the morning in Cleo. They wanted $12 for their feast, which, given how much we eat in the morning would have worked out to $6 per pancake.

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