On the Road Adventures

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

July 25/26 - Quartz Creek

We didn’t do a lot on the 25th – it was chilly, windy and rainy. Gypsy and I walked to the boardwalk and I did some bird watching. That LBB showed up again, but kept flitting around behind leaves. It could be a juvenile something, which is a good excuse for not being able to identify it. Later we all took a long walk, but it was nice to get back inside where it was warm.

July 26

We went on a raft trip down the Kenai today. All the other people on the trip were on Princess cruises, either post- or pre-cruise, and everyone was in high spirits. The trip down the Kenai was beautiful. The water is a clear, blue-green color. My watercolor friends will recognize what I mean when I say “azurite genuine.” It’s exactly that shade. We saw gulls, eagles, several mergansers, and some ducks, golden-eye and cinnamon teal. No bears. Boo. The fisherfolk were the wildest form of life we saw as we floated by them, and there were lots of those! The float was billed as having some Class III rapids, but while there were stretches that made the guide work, it was basically a float trip with a few little splashes and bumps. We pulled out at Hidden Creek on the edge of Skilak Lake. The lake was much higher than usual because the glacier at the end of the lake had formed a sort of holding pond in front of it, dammed up by ice, and the ice just broken up, sending a wall of water washing down into the lake. The wind was also fairly stiff, so instead of riding across the lake to the launch ramp, most of us walked out along a 1.3 mile trail. It was a nice walk and a good change for all the sitting we’d been doing.

We got back to Cleo, rescued Gypsy, and went to a little nearby café for dinner. After we got back, Gerry took Gypsy for a walk around the campground, where he learned that she had apparently spent her entire day lounging on the dash in the front window, since people stopped him to ask if she was “that doggie in the window.” While he was out, he went up the boardwalk and discovered that there were red salmon in the stream, so he came back and got me, and we walked back over with camera and polarizing lens in hand. The fish were so neat. It was the first time we’d seen them in any of the streams, and it checks off one of the experiences we wanted to get while we were here. (Thank you, Betty, for showing me how to use that polarizing filter!)

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