Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Calder's Alaskan Roadtrip, age 3-6 weeks

Calder's Roadtrip: Here are some picture highlights, followed by Chris' journal on our 3 week Alaskan trek.King Mountain Campground on the Glenn Hwy, camped on the Matanuska River:Fly-fishing on the Little Nelchina River: Breastfeeding on the Tolsona Riverbank:

Burp time:

A beautiful clear fall day at Tangle Lakes, off the Denali Hwy:

Camping at Tangle Lakes Campground on the Denali Hwy. (Terry, Trav, Nate, Anna, Leah, Erin, Jen):

Rednecks unite - an afternoon 4-wheeler hunting ride off the Denali Hwy (Terry, Nate, Chris, & Trav):
Calder and Grandpa Hyer at Tangle Lakes Campground:

Camped along the Delta River:

Jen sitting on the Alyeska pipeline (one of the places where it goes underground):

Camped at Uncle Trav's house in Fairbanks:

Another sunny September day in Alaska?!?!?! A camping spot on the Steese Hwy on Cripple Creek:

Flat tire on the Steese Highway out of Fairbanks (160 miles of gravel road):

Circle, Alaska: at the end of the Steese Highway. Our rig is in the background, camped in a parking lot on the Yukon River:

We met up with "Uncle Travis" for his 30th birthday on the Chatanika River. This picture of Calder is most telling of his nightly "colic" routine.
Sleepy time:

Chris and his buddy taking a nap:

Denali (Mount McKinley for those non-Alaskans) was out! She only shows herself 1 out of every 3 days during the year and this was a particularly spectacular showing:
South Rolly Campground in Willow:
Calder in his sling with dad at Deep Creek:

Deep Creek on the Kenai Peninsula:
Jen & Calder on the Little Nelchina River:

Chris' journal entry on our roadtrip:
We’re home, but not from 3 weeks sailing in Prince William Sound as originally planned. We had addressed most of the challenges of having a newborn on board, but had a couple concerns for which there were no obvious or easy solutions. Our plan was still to go sailing and improvise, but with four days of predicted 9 to 16 seas in the Gulf of Alaska (It is a 40 mile stretch of exposed ocean from Resurrection Bay to the protection of Prince William Sound); we changed course and plan.

Calder has officially spent more than half of his life on the road and has logged just under 2,000 miles.
Fortunately for all of us, he does really well in the car so is proving very portable. However, he is also quite colicky and a real handful at times. It has been a much tougher transition than we thought it would be and we’ve found we were very mentally unprepared for all the changes. Now that he is over 6 weeks old (they grow up so fast) we’re getting things figured out. He’s actually mellowing a little and is having more good days than bad ones on the colicky front. He’s adorable (of course) and is starting to be more interactive with us and is working on his smile.
We got home last Saturday after three weeks traveling with Grandma and Grandpa Hyer’s truck and trailer. We left Anchorage on September 1 for the Kenai River Fishcamp for a few days to pick up the trailer and do some more fishing. Then we headed back North through Anchorage and up the Glen Highway. A week later we met up at Tangle Lakes on the Denali Highway for a Rendezvous with Grandma and Grandpa, Uncle Trav, and our friends Nate and Leah and their daughter Anna. From there we re-provisioned in Fairbanks and all got showers at Uncle Trav’s (and a great dinner) before heading further North to Circle Alaska. Circle is the end of the Steese highway and is about 160 miles out of Fairbanks (135 miles of gravel) and 50 miles South of the Arctic Circle, right on the Yukon River. From there we headed South, back to Fairbanks and then down the Parks Highway to Denali Park, through Anchorage and back to the Kenai.
This circuit of roads makes a huge loop and travels through many mountains and tundra. The fall colors were incredible and somehow we only had 1 day of rain the entire trip. Most days were very sunny and warm…very unlike September in Alaska. The scenery was nothing short of astounding every day and we really took our time and stayed in many little campgrounds that we’ve never visited. Most were deserted, as it’s so late in our camping season.
Our apologies for all the unanswered e-mails and unreturned phone calls. Lack of cell coverage is probably more of an excuse, though most evenings we did not have coverage. It was kind of nice to be out there beyond the reach of technology! We are back in Anchorage now, both heading back into work. We will continue to post updates on our blog about life with Calder.