Wednesday, May 02, 2018

Stopover In Talkeetna

It was sunny and warm, though windy when we left Anchorage.  The workers already had plastic on the floor, a couple of daffodils were close to opening,  buds on the birch trees were greening.  After reading about yesterday's "heavy snow" in Denali, along with the road being open only to mile 3, and temperatures dipping to the low 20s, I booked a room in Talkeetna for the night.

We got here and napped - catching up on some sleep we needed - then walked on the back streets which got us this view of a creek that I'm assuming empties into the Susitna nearby.

There's still a lot more winter here than in Anchorage.

We wandered back and took the trail through the woods into town.

Our first glimpse of downtown:

There's one main street, several blocks long.  Talkeetna's about 110 miles north of Anchorage.  Denali National Park is about 235 miles north so this seemed a good stop and we haven't really been here for quite a while.  It's about ten miles off the main road, so we tend to pass it by.  It's the jumping off point for Denali climbers.  In summer climbers from around the world are here (well they're here already) to fly to a Denali base camp in hopes of getting to the peak.  We were told that people had been stuck on the mountain due to the recent storms and a plane was able to get folks back yesterday.

We stayed a night in the Fairview Inn one winter many, many years ago.  It was a long noisy night as the bar is downstairs and they have frequent concerts.

The Fairview Inn was built in 1923 and soon after President Harding, on a long visit to Alaska, was there for lunch.  He died shortly after, though I don't think there's a cause and effect relationship.  It's registered as an historical monument.

If you're paying attention, you'll see it has a for sale sign.  An ADN article from 2014 said that attorney Phillip Wiedener had it up for sale at that time for $1.8 million.  I checked today and the price is only $1.2 million.   For people seeing prices like that for little homes in California, it might seem a steal.

We passed the cannabis shop, but it wasn't open.

And then on down to the Susitna River.

Further north, the Nenena Ice Classic ended yesterday when the tripod on the ice moved the required distance down the river giving someone a $225,000 jackpot for being the closest to the exact time the tripod was tripped.   And some ice passed by while I was watching.

Looking up the river, we could see the Alaska range, at least the foothills below Denali which would have been off the picture to the right if the clouds were gone.

We had pizza for dinner at the Wildflower Cafe,which was surprisingly good and not very expensive.  But the highlight was the amazingly illustrated bathroom.  (A bit distorted as I tried to photoshop two pictures together)

Denali's supposed to have a high of 37˚ F tomorrow, with a partly cloudy forecast for the morning and early afternoon, and then the days get warmer through the weekend (into the 40˚s) with some chance of rain and snow each day.   But the park is a large area and the entrance is fairly low elevation, so I think we'll take our chances.  Being outside walking around today was great, and we've been in the campgrounds with snow before.  Though the Park's website has conflicting info - the Alert says the road is open to mile 3 but the map (now) shows it open to mile 30.

Here's a webcam of the Alaska RR depot in the Park.  There's plenty of snow.  And this one from Mt. Healy suggests the Alert is more accurate than the map.  I guess we'll explore near the park entrance.  Or we'll cuddle up in the van and read a lot.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments will be reviewed, not for content (except ads), but for style. Comments with personal insults, rambling tirades, and significant repetition will be deleted. Ads disguised as comments, unless closely related to the post and of value to readers (my call) will be deleted. Click here to learn to put links in your comment.