Journals, Photos and Videos

Cooper Landing, AK to Gakona, AK (289 Miles)

We’re on our way. Our objective was Gakona, AK and we made it around 5PM. 300 miles is our daily objective.

Gakona is a small town about 20 miles from Glennallen on the Tok Spur highway. It sits right on the Wrangell-St Elias National Park border. This National Park is 13,000,000 acres and is larger than Switzerland and higher as well. It contains 9 of the tallest 16 peaks in North America. We’ll bring you more about Wrangell-St Elias another day.
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We were on the road by 9:45 this morning after a pleasantly uneventful hookup. We went through our checklist and all went according to plan with no issues. We went down to Wildman’s before driving away and said some challenging good-byes to old and new and great friends.

It was very difficult going down to the store for the last time this year and cutting the umbilical cord leaving our “other family”. The folks of Cooper Landing have become our second family and support system. You start with Cheryle and Jerry then Carrie and John, Heather, Sue, Pat, Linda, the Testosterone Table regulars…..OMG…..must stop now as we would have to mention all the 350 winter time residents of the community. Thank you all for your friendship we treasure it.

As we departed, we noted the pertinent information like time, temperature (47˚). It was overcast but there was brightness in the sky. There was also “termination dust” (snow) on all the higher mountains around Cooper Landing and those we passed as we progressed north toward Anchorage.

It was a great day for sights. First - swans on Tern Lake, a beluga whale and 2 eagles as we rounded Turnagain Arm. Then all that was put to shame by the foliage as we proceeded along the Glen Highway from Anchorage to Glennallen.

We did encounter a few showers along the Seward Highway, but after Anchorage, although it was cloudy, the day was bright and beautiful and the scenery extraordinary.

Oh, we did have one unscheduled adventure. While we were setting up the camper, Angus who was on a leash, decided to go on a “walk about”. We could not find him for a while and then we found him down about a 30 degree steep hill in the muddy edge of the Copper River. George rescued him from the glacierly cold water!

It was hard to leave such great friends but we couldn’t delay without putting us at risk for snow and that was something we are determined to avoid.

Thanks again to all the Wild folk and especially Jerry and Cheryle!
We’ve had another great summer in Cooper Landing at Wildman’s but the time has come to head home. The fireweed have lost their bloom and the higher mountains around us have gotten a coat of “termination dust”. We’ve delayed our departure a couple of days since we’ve been working on a rebuild of Wildman’s Web Site.

We are eager to get on the road and get back to Colorado to see our grandkids and kids. They must have suffered with us being gone for so long.

As I mentioned, it was a great summer with a few unpleasant challenges that slowed us down when we arrived, but folks at Wildman’s and in Cooper Landing made our arrival and stay extraordinary. We will be posting anecdotes, photos and videos about the summer as well as our progress back to Colorado.

Here’s our planned itinerary, subject to change of course:
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