Saturday, June 21, 2014

Fairbanks to Denali National Park

Rainbow Lodge RV Park
One mile from entrance to National Park

I had no internet for about 5 days so I kept a journal and then I added the pictures.
Fairbanks to Denali National Park, about 120 miles.  Along the way we stopped at this really small cute little town, Nenana.  Their "fame to glory" is the Annual Ice Classic that began in 1917.  In March they drag a 26-foot tall tripod out onto the thick river ice and wire it to a clock.  When the ice breaks up a cable trips the clock.  We bought two ticks at $2.50 each and we write down our guess of the exact day, hour and minute the ice will go out on the river.  That's what they call it "when it goes out".  The ice usually goes out between April 20th and May 20th.  This last spring it went out on April 25th; over two dozen people split the $363,000 pot for guessing the exact day, hour and minute the ice on the Tanana River broke up.  When the wire is attached to the clock it is guarded 24/7 which could be two months.
The Tanana River which is on the banks of the town of Nenama a working river with barges going to remote Alaskan villages, it is the fastest navigable river in Alaska.
St. Mark's Church an old fashioned log building was moved to higher ground in 1905 after the original church was washed downriver.
Mural on Coghill's Store was painted by Erica Lord, a native of this small town of Nenana with a population of about 550 people.

Lunch stop.

This was a very good dirt road.

Are we there yet?

Next stop was The Rainbow RV Park, about one mile from the entrance to Denali Park.  They had full hook ups, supposedly internet, and a good place to stop so we could get into Denali first thing in the morning.  Across the street was the Grand Princess Lodge (or something like that)  We enjoyed a dinner show there with Salmon and Beef Briscit where the waiters were the actors, lots of fun it runs two times a night every night throught the summer.   It's so nice being early in the season when the crowds are just not there.  While we were there we went into a fur shop and I touched a fur coat valued a t$7.495, so soft you could hardly tell you were touching it.  I forgot to look to see what kind of fur it was made of, I just carefully laid the sleeve back down.

The dinner was family style.

One of the actors telling us that we can't take pictures during the performance.

One of the rangers giving a class on bear safety.  There are all these rules as to what to do and when to do it when you see a bear, moose, etc.  How may yards are they away?  When to take the safety off your bear spray, when to spray it and make sure you are not standing down wind.  Are they just looking at you or are they charging?
 No bears in class, they must have had their class at a different time.

That's it for day one at Denali, have a blessed day.


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