Saturday, June 29, 2013

Alaska Day 9 - Last Day and then Red-Eye home

One of several great murals in Seward
Friday, my last day in Alaska.  Time to check out of my very nice room at the Windsong Lodge in Seward and start working my way north toward Anchorage.   My last final thoughts as I drove back up the gorgeous Seward Highway were ones of thankfulness and gratitude that I've been able to take this trip of a lifetime.  I wanted this to be an intimate look at this gorgeous state, seeing it up close and not from the window of a tour bus or cruise ship.  Seeing the day-to-day life of Alaska and finding the little out-of-the-way places.  I feel like I managed to do that.

I don't know if I'll ever get back to Alaska...I just know that I'm so fortunate to have been able to see this gorgeous state - expenses be damned - and I'll cherish these memories for the rest of my life.

But before I headed back up the Seward Highway toward Anchorage, I spent half the day in the cute little historic downtown area of Seward.  I visited the SeaLife Center, a unique facility - not quite an aquarium, more like a rescue facility.  Very nice exhibits and a good collection of native sea birds, mammals and fish.

Alaska SeaLife Center

Another great mural in Seward


Pretty little church that I spied on a side street
Love how it backs up a steep evergreen-covered mountain


A statue in the park adjacent to the SeaLife Center commemorates the intrepid and hardy original mushers on the Iditarod.  The statue sites at mile "0" of the Iditarod Trail.

Iditarod monument - mile "0"


The story of the town including the history of the Iditarod:


Then I headed north toward Anchorage, and stopped in the tiny little town of Girdwood, pretty much off the main highway...you have to hunt for it!  I found an excellent restaurant, Chair 5 and had the best salmon I'd had all week.  Tender, moist, grilled just right.
Lunch at Chair 5 in Girdwood.  Definitely off the tourist trail
You have to know this is here.

My yummy grilled salmon sandwich and the best fries I've ever had!


As I neared civilization I began to rue having not seen any moose or bear on my trip aside from those I saw in the zoo or the Wildlife Preservation Center.  Then...what's this??  Movement in the marshes along side the highway.  I braked and pulled over and got off a few good shots of the moose.  As someone said to me earlier in the week, if you want to see wildlife, just look for cars pulled over.  Sure enough.  By the time I finished taking my photos there were at least a half dozen cars and a couple of RV's pulled over near me.  Funny!!

My trip was complete!!  I'd seen a moose in the wild!
Sloshing toward the road


Turning onto the shore
Walking away

Turning back toward the marshy pond
Now to the airport, turn the rental car in and kill a few hours waiting for my midnight red-eye flight.


1 comment:

  1. I am a little behind in my blog reading so you are probably home by now.

    Thank you so much for sharing your Alaska adventures. It is on my bucket list but who knows if we'll ever get there.

    And it sounds like that salmon almost makes up for the bad fillets you had before. Glad you had some good eats before you left.

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