Are we there yet?

By late afternoon we were well past the snow line and the title says it all…Are we there yet?

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People were getting restless. We had tickets to the dinner show so we didn’t want to eat in the dining car again but Lynn said we were still several hours out. In fact we were running so late that they were going to hold the start of the show for us. She said we were stopping a lot to get animals off the tracks. Interesting because you’d think someone would see the animals running away from the train.

At another stop a couple of people got on to do a presentation about the Iditarod and dog sledding. I think they were pitching one of the tours that featured the dogs and mushing.

While they were doing their presentation more shouts went up. This time the shouts were “bears”. And sure enough there were 3 of them. (Photo compliments of the internet)

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Goldie Locks and the 3 bears sprang immediately to mind too. They were quite far away on a still  frozen river but they were identified as “grizzlies”. Probably a family group of a mother and 2 older cubs. They were too large to be this year’s cubs and mature males are solitary except during mating season.

The “mushers’ gave up trying to pitch their tour saying that they couldn’t compete with grizzly bears but they must have done a good job because we booked a tour and so did the couple we were sitting with, Robert and Julia.

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We crossed a huge trestle bridge. Robert came back from the platform and said he’s gotten a shot as the train approached it. I took mine through the window and got the shadow and  look at that gorge! I was a lot warmer than Robert when all was said and done. 🙂

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Around dinnertime we ordered a snack of a cinnamon roll. It came warm, all gooey, melty goodness. 🙂 That should hold me until we get to the lodge!

Shortly after that we had another  bit of excitement. Again the action was way off in a valley along another river. This time the excitement was caribou. Looks like just one here.

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But look what you see when I really enlarge this picture! There’s a 2nd one heading into the brush.

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We spotted 2 first and than a bit farther on another 2. At least this was making the ride more interesting.

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Here it is enlarged. I’m showing both pictures so you get an idea of how tiny and far away they were from the train.

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Finally we spotted some buildings. We thought sure they must be the lodge but we were told no but soon.

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When we finally pulled into the depot we still had to load onto buses for the last leg of the journey. We were handed a packet with our room keys and a map so we didn’t have to go through check in. That saved some time as we hot-footed it to our room to drop off our carry-ons and turn around to get to the dinner theater.

No time for pictures, as the white rabbit once said “I’m late, I’m late, for a very important date.” But we did get waylaid for just that…a picture.

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Once in the dinner theater the usher asked if we were from the train that had been held up by the landslide! So now it was a landslide not animals. I think they need to get their stories straight. 🙂 In any case, dinner was served family style and they started serving almost as soon as we were seated.

I don’t know about Sandy but boy, I was ready for a good meal!

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0 Responses to Are we there yet?

  1. I’m glad you at least had sun for your l-o-n-g ride in! And to see those critters must have been so exciting. I’m re-living the fun now, as we were there at those very same hotels and shops that you where at. It was special that you could see Mt. McK. in all its glory, we had half a decent shot at it, with just a small amount of clouds, but you had a wonderful clear view. Were you super excited to see the grizzlies?

    • Dusty Roads says:

      I was excited to see the grizzlies. 🙂 I was hoping it was just the beginning of many more. I wanted to get some bear pictures of my own…not borrowed from the internet. They were so far away as you can see by the caribou pictures. Yes, Mt McKinley was being very cooperative. It was for most of our trip.