July 18, 2012

Delta Junction and My 1st Camping Trip*

*in Alaska.  I used to camp as a child.  When my parents did all the work.  

Scott and I took a trip to somewhere we hadn't yet been in Alaska.  He wanted to scout some fishing spots for the late salmon run in the fall, I wanted to spend time with him, and he had a new tent.

So, camping it was.

We drove north to Delta Junction, Alaska.

The thing about travel in Alaska is that there is a rest stop maybe every 50 miles, usually in the middle of nowhere.  There is a gas station about every 100 miles, where your husband will buy things like bottles of soda that are, I'm sure, at least $3.00 each.  Traveling in Alaska is like watching supply and demand in action.

I didn't see a Starbucks for 2 days.  Very strange.

Don't freak out like I almost did.  I'll walk you through it.

This is the Matanuska [Mat-uh-new-ska] Glacier.  It's about an hour from our house.  You can actually walk on it.  I think so anyway.  I'm not getting close enough to fall in.

Do you know what these things are?  I don't know the actual name, but I know what they do.
Let's call them "snow guides".  When the snow piles up on the sides of the highway, and the road itself is covered with snowpack, these are the friendly reminders that keep you on the road.  And not sliding off into oblivion.  Where you might fall into a glacier. 

This is a Thai food truck at a gas station in Glenallen.  
Word on the street is that it is the best Thai food in Alaska.  We passed through at breakfast time, so I can't verify the claim.

Another silly glacier, truly in the middle of nowhere.  If you fell in there, there's not even a chance of anyone hearing your cries.

 The pipeline.  We followed it most of the way there.
Fun Fact #1:  The TAPS had trouble passing environmental standards.  Apparently, several environmentalists thought it would affect the migration of caribou herds.  Heaven forbid.  The solution was to raise it x number of feet off the ground in several locations so the animals could pass through.  Whew.

Once you get so far north, the land gets flatter and farms are everywhere.  It reminds me of the lower 48 and I really like it.  That's why I insist we go north on trips instead of south.  The Kenai Peninsula with its rain, clouds, and avalanches is the devil.


 Someone was working very hard to get that tent up.

 Fun Fact #2:  I wanted a tripod for the camera.  I found a tripod that belonged to a gun scope in the garage.  Free tripod.  

To be fair, he did get to fish...for a couple of hours.  I read some Sophie Kinsella.  

 Fun Fact #3:  As well as Thai food, you can also eat a variety of European delicacies...in northern Alaska.  While "camping", we ate dinner at Taste of Europe.

Fun Fact #4:  The mosquitoes here can get this big.  

Long story:  We drove most of the Alaska Highway in 2009 when we moved here.  Probably 1,300 of the 1,422 miles.  We hopped off and turned south to Anchorage instead of ending it at Delta Junction.  This is where the highway actually ends.
In this picture, the road to the Canadian border was right behind us.  I looked at it longingly.  Scott wouldn't let me flee.  Whatever.  I had forgotten my passport anyway.  

Part of the Delta Junction delta.  

Fun Fact #5:  This is how people in Delta Junction spell "garage".  


  1. We ran out of gas one time on that road thanks to J's friend who was driving. He thought he could skip getting gas and waiting until the next one. Umm?? Dumb. That was a cold night on the side of the road!

  2. Sounds like an epic and successful trip.
    I lol-ed (literally, out loud) at the Gerge Sale sign.
    Great education up there, huh? I'm glad you're instilling your knowledge on the future population up there. Maybe in 10 years, through your positive influence, they will know how to spell "garage."

  3. Your fun facts are my favorite part.

    Those and what I'm pretty sure is a bison warning sign behind you in the giant mosquito picture.

  4. I feel like I made the trip with you. Let me tell you, it was tons of fun! Haha, really though, I love all the photos. Can't even imagine what it must feel like to breathe that much clean air. Wow.

    The giant mosquito photo & caption made my day :)

  5. Love this post! Glad you can add camping in Alaska to your resume (as opposed to eaten by a bear while camping in Alaska). We go backpacking tomorrow, pepper spray and all.

  6. Ok Fun Fact #5 just made me laugh a lot. Like seriously.

  7. Now, even though the thought of no starbucks for that long would send me into withdrawals, at least the scenery would be beautiful!

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