I know that all things must come to an end, but I’ll never claim to be good at handling it. I always get sad when a book ends, or a concert comes to a close… I always want one more chapter, one more song…
My mom and dad just spent a week in Alaska with us. We managed to squeeze every second out of every day, and truly shared the trip of a lifetime together. Over the course of seven days we went backcountry camping in a yurt and cooked moose burgers over the fire (my parents’ first camping experience), flashed back to the 70’s at the Girdwood Forest Fair, canyoneered at Crow Creek Mine, whitewater rafted down Glacier Creek, explored Prince William Sound on a six-hour glacier cruise, jetboated the Twenty Mile River and rode an aerial tram to the top of Mount Alyeska for a blue sky wine picnic. Ooohs and ahhhs were on repeat.
Whew, I’m worn out just thinking about all that! My parents hit the ground running and were game for anything we threw at them. I bet they need a vacation to recoup from this vacation! I can also bet they never felt more alive as they did here in Alaska. Anyone who knows my mom knows she isn’t much of a daredevil, but on this trip she proved to us and herself that she’s capable of a lot more than she thought. 🙂
One of the perks of Scott’s job is access to a pile of awesome outdoor equipment. We took full advantage of this perk and Scott was our own personal adventure guide throughout the week. My mom trusted him enough to step into a harness, and after a crash course on canyoneering, repel herself down a 50’ rock face! And as if that wasn’t exciting enough, on the third repel her shirt got caught in the belay device, forcing Scott to scurry up the cliff and cut her free. What a thrill! I’ve got to hand it to her, despite the shirt incident and her fear of heights, she handled the trip with courage and grace.
I caught myself stopping frequently to consider the magic of the moment. I loved watching my parents take in the all beautiful scenery for the first time. The sense of wonderment spilled out of them and made me fall in love with Alaska all over again.
But enough words, I believe the trip is better summarized by photos. Here are a few of my favorites from the week. Mom and Dad, thank you for sharing in our Girdwood summer. We couldn’t have scripted it any better, I love you both.
Hiking the Albert Loop trail to the Eagle River yurt
First obstacle! Scott made a bridge to help us cross the river
Enjoying breakfast outside the yurt
At the trailhead in Eagle River, Alaska
Girdwood Forest Fair
@ the Sitzmark in Girdwood
Canyoneering at Crow Creek Mine
Jetboating the Twenty Mile river with Mark and Shoman
Whittier harbor before the Prince William Sound glacier cruise
Surprise Glacier! We saw bits of ice “cave” or break off and drop into the sea
Mom taking in the scenery
Elk basking in the sun at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center
SW Dude Ranch
Turnagain Arm photo shoot
Scott pumping up the raft as we crossed the Winner Creek hand tram
Dad gearing up for whitewater rafting
Thumbs up and ready to go!
Taking the aerial tram to the top of Mount Alyeska
On top of the world