After our fabulous time in Homer, we prepared to drive towards Denali National Park & Preserve. The plan was to resupply in Anchorage and then spend a day in funky Talkeetna along the way. But we almost did not get going as planned, because I had a horrible night with what I believe must have been food poisoning. Hector and I both ate pork chops, and he did not get sick, so I am not sure what did me in.
In any case, I was exhausted by morning, not having slept much. But we decided that I would sleep and Hector would get everything ready and drive to Anchorage. It was the first time that I did not help with setting up for a travel day and I felt terrible about it. But I had stowed a lot of the inside stuff the previous night so it was not too bad for Hector.
So, indeed, I slept while Hector drove. By the late afternoon, I was feeling much better and was able to help out with a couple of chores in Anchorage. We dry camped at Cabelas once again; easy in easy out.
The next day we got a bit of a late start as both of us were pretty tired. But we made it to Talkeetna in the late afternoon. This time we just dry camped in a gravel pullout on the side road that leads to Talkeetna (yes, we are so glamorous sometimes).
Homer to Anchorage
Road Name: Sterling Highway to Seward Highway
Road Type: 2-lane
Driving Time: 5:00
Anchorage to Talkeetna
Road Name: Glenn Highway to Parks Highway
Road Conditions: Very good throughout, some construction. This is a very heavily travelled road connecting Anchorage to Fairbanks so it is kept up as far as we have travelled.
Driving Time: 2:30
Total Miles in Alaska: 1583
Total Miles since entering Canada: 3577
We stopped at a scenic float plane base to ask about flightseeing over the glaciers. Years ago on our first visit to Alaska, we booked a flight that included a landing on a glacier – very expensive! We waited three days, but the flights were not taking off because of weather up at Denali, so we never got to do it.
This time, we were thinking it was too expensive to land on a glacier – so we checked out the slightly shorter flights. Since we only had the next morning), and it was forecast to be cloudy, it was dubious.
Denali can be very shy and does not show herself easily.
We took an evening stroll in the town, a trip down memory lane as we spotted the little inn we stayed at, the famous general store where we first saw the “mayor of the town” – a cat named Stubbs, and the restaurant where we had several breakfasts.
Stubbs is showing his age a bit. But the sturdy cat has been reelected several times and is still the mayor. There was also a cute little dog who obviously has the run of the tiny town, Dolcie. She must be the vice mayor we can only assume 🙂 I loved Dolcie.
Though Talkeetna is a touristy town, it retains its charm, with charming structures and art galleries.
You can order your eggs any way you like but per long tradition they always come out perfectly scrambled! We were joined by some nice tourists from the midwest and a couple of cute young ladies spending their summer working here.
And we found a photography gallery, Aurora Dora that featured images of the Aurora Borealis. Dora had some stunning photos. Hector immediately started to chat with her (as he does in all photography galleries) and asked her about how to best photograph auroras.
Dora, a charming Brazilian lady far from home, was very generous with her information and not only gave him tips on photographing auroras but also gave us tips about a few of the places we plan on visiting next. She also offers winter workshops on astro photography that sounded really interesting.
And we found out that we just might be in Alaska long enough to see the aurora borealis – exciting!