Thursday, June 23, 2011


It was an easy drive of about 95 miles from Soldotna, on a sunny day with fairly good roads. Here are a few of the scenes we saw on the way down.

Kenai Lake.


The water seems more blue than many lakes with glacier runoff, which tends to be gray and looks like wet ashes.


The inevitable construction zone.


Gorgeous mountains and interesting clouds. Plus a bug or two on the windshield.


Lupine growing wild alongside the road.


Seward is a small town on an ice-free port, founded in 1903. The Kenai Fjords National Park, to which Seward is known as the “Gateway,” was established in 1980 to include ice fields and coastline. The town is situated between Resurrection Bay and Mount Marathon. It served as a transportation hub for Alaska’s mining, exploration, fishing and trapping industries in the past. The Iditarod Trail originally went from Seward to Nome as a mail route. In 1924, planes started delivering mail. The Iditarod is now best known for the annual dog sled race held in March, running 938 miles from Anchorage to Nome. We plan to take a 7-hour excursion boat ride tomorrow to see the glaciers and wildlife in this area.

Some of the scenes from our drive around town.






Mount Marathon (elev. 3,022 ft.) is just above our campground, and is where runners run/climb up and run/jump/slide down the rocky slopes during the annual July 4th race. According to The Milepost, “Good things rarely come from a bar bet, but when 2 Sourdoughs wagered over whether Seward’s Mount Marathon could be climbed in under an hour, a legend was born…The race is said to have begun in 1909…Fastest recorded time is 43 minutes, 23 seconds set in 1981 by Bill Spencer.”


According to The Milepost, “Resurrection Bay was named in 1792 by Russian fur trader and explorer Alexander Baranof. While sailing from Kodiak to Yakutat he found unexpected shelter in this bay from a storm and named the bay Resurrection because it was the Russian Sunday of the Resurrection (Easter).”

Wikipedia states, “The opening of the film The Hunt for Red October was filmed in Resurrection Bay, with the bay serving as a stand-in for Russia's Murmansk Fjord.”

We’re all parked facing the water of Resurrection Bay. Most of us are at the Marathon city park, across from the dump station at $15/night dry camping. Jim and Pat decided to stay at the Resurrection city park, one park south of us, for $30 with electricity and showers. We all have similar breathtaking views.


Food supplies coming in, probably from Seattle.


Will our tour boat look like this tomorrow?


We had happy hour together. We’ve spotted a sea otter playing in the waters near us, and an eagle soaring overhead, along with lots of seagulls and cormorants. Maybe we’ll get to burn the firewood Don and I have been carrying around since we left Homer.


The campground host stopped by to see if we needed any information.


Don finally found some fresh flowers to refill my empty vase.


Interesting comments we heard today: “Major chill” on the news from Chicago, IL = low 60’s. “It’s going to be really hot tomorrow” while signing up for the boat trip in Seward, AK = low 60’s. It’s frequently a little on the cool side for me, especially when it’s in the low 50’s and the wind’s blowing. But I’ll take this weather any day over hot temps in the 100’s, especially when humidity is added to the mix!

Addendum: About 8:35 pm, just as I was publishing this, a fire truck drove by announcing a tsunami warning. It wasn’t a joke, and was repeated several times. Don was walking Shadow at the time, and very quickly returned and told me to grab my purse and phone and come with them. We 3 got in the car and drove out of the campground, following the tsunami evacuation route signs. They led us in a circuitous route around town to higher ground (now we know the short route). About that time, Dennis called to say it was a false alarm, okay to return home.

Larry and Marilyn had started to pack up their motorhome, with slides pulled in. (Don and I believe the motorhome and contents are just ‘things’ that can be replaced; save lives first.)


The campground host decided to turn over his job to Don, after earlier hearing that he’d previously been a campground host!


The fire truck returned to announce that it was a false alarm, no evacuation necessary.


Even the City Manager stopped by to make sure we got the message.


If you hadn’t already met your neighbors, this was a good opportunity!


The people in this sailboat didn’t seem concerned.


We later learned that a 7.4 magnitude earthquake in the Aleutian islands was the cause for the tsunami warning. We hope nobody was injured.

The excitement’s over. Time to start a new book. Thanks to my friends for loaning me paperbacks while I wait to return to Anchorage to receive my Kindle replacement.


  1. Hey thanks for sharing this blog, there are nice places you described in here and your RV is amazing...

  2. We had great fun in Seward last year. I hope whatever glacier your boat trip takes you to tomorrow is as active as Aialik Glacier was for us last year ... it kept calving huge chunks of ice for almost the entire hour or so we were there. If you like murals, the town is known as the Mural Capital of Alaska ... you can pick up a map from the visitor center and go mural hunting on foot or by car. (There's a link to the Mural Society on my post here ...

    The Sea Bean Cafe is a good place to get a cup of coffee or an ice cream treat; and we had really good halibut fish and chips at the Marina Restaurant in downtown (nothing fancy). If you go to Exit Glacier, and I do recommend it, do the Edge of the Glacier Trail if you can ... it's relatively easy (with maybe a few spots that make you huff-and-puff, but it is oh so worth it. And of course, the SeaLife Center is a must IMHO.

  3. Be sure and say aloha to Tom Swann while you are there. His townhouse is right across the street from the start of the Ididarod Trail.


Please tell me what you think, either here, on Facebook, or by email. I *love* comments!