Monday, July 23, 2012

Homer Glacier flight & Hike

Homer is almost at the end of the road in the South Kenai Peninsula and the beginning of the great Kachemak Bay with one of the largest tides in the US with a whopping 28 feet span in a day.  There’s a lot to be said about living at the end of the road and people here are proud of it.

Usually when I think of a bay, I think of a nice safe part of the ocean kids can swim in, but not here. It’s massive and I would never imagine people swimming here, even kids.  I was laying down at the beach in the sun and it was breezy. I felt like I was not in the sun at all b/c the air was that cold. It was so weird to know that there was sun on me, but I did not feel it. But then you look across at the endless, still snow-peaked mts, you realize it’s just a different kind of beach here.

I am tempted, at times, to do a winter here b/c it will be like none other for me. It’s not as brutally cold in Homer as it is further up North in AK. I hear Fairbanks peeps are the real tough guys and the city is the true wild western Alaska.

I think the crazy winter is what binds and makes the people here so interesting. They do quirky things to make the best of it. Enjoy and embrace it. The other day I was in the cold, sunny, wind at the Farmers Market where I work, I could not believe how chilly the wind made it. One woman said to me, “Live it up, it’s as good as it gets”.

Some locals prefer winter b/c its less people and the snow is just beautiful here. Will see what happens. For now I am enjoying what I can and looking for job opps here and there. I recently was treated to a charter plane over a glacier and next day a boat ride to hike near the same glacier 2x. Click here for those pix.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Kenai National Wildlife Refuge

In recent news, my nanny gig ended and I rented a room from a young man, Barrett, who owns his house. It was the only month to month option.  His mom vends at the market s he ended up not being a complete stranger. So far so good except he does not recycle, so I am setting that up and he does not do dishes right away. It’s closer to town with running water and wash/dryer, but rent is more than I make.  I’m looking for another p/t job.It's tricky b/c who wants to work all summer in great AK!

Tues night, I headed to Kenai National Wildlife Refuge; what a secret gem this place is. Hardly anyone was camping and many of the campsites are free. We did 3 hiking trails and only saw a couple on one of the trails. This is during 4th of July. It was so great to camp and be with nature for 3 whole nights. And it was only 2ish hours away.

One trick I learned from being on the road last year is to check out empty campsites for firewood. Some people do leave it behind; we scored 5 nice pieces. Great trip but we forget to bring chairs! One lovely idea I had is for campsites to have a communal hot tub (wooden of course) and/or sauna. In AK these two items are popular but very different than the version we have in the L48 (short for Lower 48 that I made up). 

I'm grateful for the wonderful friends that I have been making here and people w/ cars giving me rides and going out and about with me! Click here for more pix.