With Eagles, Whales and Glaciers, Part 1.

The Kenai Peninsula

These are our last three days in Alaska.(Zum deutschen Blog.) Not only the sky is crying when we say “good bye” to the “Alaska Garden B & B” in Wasilla, I have to swallow as well. I fell in love with this country and would like to stay here, at least for a while. The really good and extensive breakfast buffet can give us little comfort over the fact that our tour is going to end soon.

Alaska Garden B & B
Alaska Garden B & B

We drive along the Glenn Highway, heading towards the Kenai Peninsula. As it is pouring down with rain and we can hardly see the environment, we make a short stop at a shopping mall. But we do not stay long there, as we have some miles drive ahead of us. Soon the Glenn Highway changes into Seward Highway. There is a lot of traffic, very different from the last few days. It is noticeable that we are near Anchorage.

Turnagain Arm
Turnagain Arm

The rain lessens now and the mist drifts off to higher regions. Finally we can see the mountains that surround us. We drive along the Turnagain Arm, a long and relatively slim inlet. We stop at Beluga Point, the wind is so strong that I´ve got the feeling to lift off. This won´t be a long photo stop and we don´t see Beluga whales anyway.

Turnagain Arm, Beluga Point
Turnagain Arm, Beluga Point

We follow the road, the Turnagain Arm always on our right side. The rain is nearly gone by now, as well as the traffic. We enjoy the view onto the snow-covered mountains and some glaciers in-between. We decide to drive to Portage Lake. That is only a short detour. There is a boat going over the lake which brings the passengers near to the glacier.

Byron Glacier
Byron Glacier

We can do without this tour; instead we hike along the Byron Glacier Trail to Byron Glacier. We need about one hour for the way to and fro. Then we drive back in the direction of the highway.P1160129-1We have another short stop at Williwaw Salmon Viewing Area. We actually see spawning salmons in the little creek. Different kinds of salmon wander upstream here before they die.

Lachse
Salmon

Back on the highway the road leads us through the mountains, up and down, around curve after curve. The rain stops totally and we get many good views over the surrounding mountains, valleys and on one or the other torrential creek.P1160107

Shortly before we reach Seward we take a right turn on Exit Glacier Road, to get to Exit Glacier. We find a nice parking lot at the visitor´s center and start our hike to the glacier that has dramatically shrunk during the last years. First the trail leads through a forest and then uphill.

Exit Glacier
Exit Glacier

With normal condition it´s about a 20 minutes hike to the bottom of the glacier. The closer we get to the glacier, the cooler it becomes. Suddenly a strong and very cold wind starts to blow. A sign at the trail describes the weather phenomena.

For today we are finished with hiking. We drive back in the direction of the highway; nearly at the end of Exit Glacier Road we see our hotel for this night. The “Seward Windsong Lodge” is a rustic hotel with several buildings that were built into a forest. We feel really well here, but our stomachs say that it is time for dinner.

Seward Windsong Lodge
Seward Windsong Lodge

So we drive into Seward, have a quick look around and decide to have dinner at “Seward Brewing Company”. With a full stomach we stroll a little along 4th Street as it is bright daylight until late.

Seward, 4th Street
Seward, 4th Ave.


Tomorrow morning we will hop on a boat to cruise along Resurrection Bay with Kenai Fjords Tours, our last highlight on our awesome round trip through Alaska and the Yukon. Next week you will get to know about this trip. Until then you´ll get new information and more photos on my facebook site or on instagram.

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Gabriela Written by:

Travel agent in Germany for more than 30 years. Entusiastic traveller to more than 50 countries. Travelblogger resently also in English, not only in German ( www.gabrielaaufreisen.de)

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