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Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Day 17: Alaska...From Glacier View to Anchorage to Portage

We used our coupon to get the $5.95 breakfast special at the Grand View campground restaurant the morning of August 24, 2007, Day 17 of our trip. It included two scrambled eggs, two strips of bacon, and a large buttermilk pancake; and it was such a treat after more than two weeks of having cereal or oatmeal every morning in Harvey.

100_0274-Grand View RV Park at Glacier View-1, AK
At Grand View RV Park the morning of Day 17

The sun was shining, so we decided to retrace about 20 of the miles we had covered the day before, since that day's overcast had prevented our enjoyment of the mountain views.

100_0279-Mtns Along Glenn Hwy Between 129 & 110 Mileposts

We drove back east on the Glenn Highway for 20 miles, then drove back west to our campground, and on to Anchorage, taking photos along the way.

100_0285-Matanuska Glacier
Matanuska Glacier at Glacier View, Alaska

100_0286-King Mtn & Matanuska River
Matanuska River

100_0292-Matanuska River
Overlooking Matanuska River

Anchorage has a population of about 280,000; and that's pretty overwhelming after traveling so long through little villages. Doug's anxiety level rose accordingly.

We stopped there for gas, then went looking for a Walmart, where we restocked some of our supplies. After that, we went in search of an RV service center where we could get that circuit breaker checked out. We called Karen's RV Service, and they couldn't get at it that day. But they called two other places for us, and one of them agreed to look at it. The guy from Karen's RV called us back and gave us very specific directions to Mobile Trailer Supplies.

The serviceman there opened the circuit breaker panel and reset the breaker with no problem. He had us fire up the generator to see if the microwave came on, and it did. He told us that you have to push down on the switch before pulling it back up to the "on" position. And he didn't charge us anything. So things were looking a little brighter for my stressed-out hubby.

After getting the RV taken care of, we went to Sam's Club, which was right across the highway from Walmart. We bought some snack foods, as well as a rotisserie chicken and some fresh fruit for our supper, which we ate before leaving the Sam's Club parking lot.

After that, we drove over to a McDonald's near the Sam's Club, and ordered ice cream sundaes for dessert. Then we headed south, down the Seward Highway, looking for a place to spend the night.

100_0293-Turnagain Arm, South of Anchorage on Seward Hwy
Turnagain Arm, South of Anchorage on Seward Highway

We found a campground, off the main highway a little way, called Portage Valley RV Park. It wasn't fancy, but it was very peaceful and relaxing, completely surrounded by mountains and glaciers, with a babbling brook running right behind Harvey. The only hookups they had were electric, and the campground toilets were porta-potties. But we had enough fresh water on board and enough room in the holding tanks to get by.

100_0306-Portage Valley RV Park
Harvey at Portage Valley RV Park

The drive down from Anchorage had been stressful because it was a winding road; traffic was moving very fast; and it's illegal to hold up more than five cars. So we had to keep pulling over to let cars pass. The scenery along that road was awesome, though, and we even saw some beluga whales from one of the turnouts.

7 comments:

  1. That would be stressful always having to pull over. But I guess the amazing scenery would be worth it! (Ps, yes I LOVE Anne of Green Gables!)

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  2. Wow---what a trip... I'm envious of you all getting to take that trip.. I hope we get to Alaska someday.. Your scenery is gorgeous. I'm sure you have said but please tell me again what month you were traveling there. Thanks!

    We drive slowly on trips also--and hubby is always pulling over to let the faster traffic pass us... We want to see everything.
    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  3. What a lovely set of pics, the whales sounf real neat.

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  4. Elizabeth - It WAS a bit harrowing, having to count the cars lining up behind us and then pulling over when it got to five. But we probably stopped for more scenic views that way. :)

    Betsy - The trip was made in August and September of 2007. I think I'd choose that same time frame if we were to ever do this again, because it was summer when we arrived; but the fall colors were popping out before we left.

    Thanks, Steve. I wish I'd been able to get better photos of the whales. If I'd been thinking about blogging back then, I could have shot some video. :)

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  5. I've driven all over the world but the road between Anchorage and Seward is my favorite one of all. What a beautiful road! Thanks for the pictures.

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  6. Really amazing photos...what great scenery and opportunities you had on this trip. I love it that you decided to retrace 20 miles to see what wasn't visible on your first run through! You know you are on vacation when you can do that!

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  7. Arie - There is so much beauty in the world. I haven't traveled outside of the U. S. or Canada, with the exception of one trip to Panama. But the diversity of landscapes and the beauty of each would make it impossible for me to choose a favorite. The Seward Highway would rank right up there, though.

    Deb - It was worth the effort it took to retrace those 20 miles. Such beauty we would have missed if we hadn't.

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