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Open Roads Forum  >  Truck Campers

 > Alaska Trip 2017' - Larson's Epic Adventure TR - Part 5

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Phoenix

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Posted: 12/01/17 10:24pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

July 29

We depart from Haines on the ferry to Juneau.

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Beautiful views from the ferry on the ride to Juneau
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It is a beautiful ride on the ferry to Juneau, riding on the ferry is so picturesque and relaxing! We arrive in Juneau about 9 pm, drive off the ferry and head to our campground.

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The next morning we get up early and go to church at Shepard of the Valley Lutheran Church, they were celebrating all the youth returning from camp, it was a fun service! We drove to downtown Juneau after eating breakfast and walked around there for a couple hours.

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We decided to drive over to Douglas Island to hike the Treadwell Mine Historic Trail, what an interesting and beautiful hike, lots of old mining equipment laying around and old buildings with placards describing what they were.

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Cruise ships parked at the Juneau ship dock, viewed from the Treadwell Mine on Douglas Island
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The next day we drive to Mendenhall National Park and hike to Nugget Falls, we photograph the Glacier and the waterfalls, the hike is short and easy.

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Nugget Falls with the Mendenhall Glacier in the background
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After that we drive to St. Therese Shrine to photograph and we enjoy walking around the beautiful grounds with the Station of the Crosses, what a beautiful setting! There was a little creek that we watched the salmon spawning in, pretty interesting to see!

St. Therese Chapel, Juneau Alaska
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A shallow creek where the salmon were spawning
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We continue on to Eagle View State Park, we see a couple eagles and then walking around we start walking towards the bridge and all of a sudden spot a black bear across the water from us, he was more interested in catching salmon then what we were up to. Of course, I didn’t have my good camera with me but snapped a few with my phone camera. We stop to eat dinner and head back to camp.

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The next day we’re driving into Juneau and I take a detour and I’m looking around while driving and all of a sudden hit this real harsh speed bump and I knew it wasn’t good! Wow, it bent the angle plate on the camper so bad that I had to remove the quick link on the tiedown to be able to get the Fastgun to fasten tightly, the angle plate is 3/16” steel. After my stomach settles, I decide it's fine to continue on and the camper is fine except for the bent bracket. Ironically, a couple weeks later while traveling in Canada we stop at a rest area and a couple stopped at the rest area want to talk about our truck camper and while looking at it notice a small hole on the bottom side of the cabover and point it out to me. I couldn't believe that looking at our camper for a couple weeks and never seeing that hole that someone else could walk right up and point it out! Evidently when the truck hit the speed bump it pitched the camper hard enough to put the gps/sirrius radio antenna through the bottom skin of the cabover! I used white duct tape for a temporary patch!

We decide to drive to Thane to take a tour of the AJ Gold Mine and on the way we see a bear cub alongside the road! After the mine tour we panned for gold and we both ended up with a couple dozen flecks of gold, it didn’t give me the gold fever though! Sue was the last one panning, she has the gold fever, LOL!

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We drove back to Juneau and photographed a couple of the old churches there and then eat Alaskan King Crab legs at Tracy’s Crab Shack, they were excellent!!


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The next day we do some domestic chores and then drive to the Salmon Bake around noon, wow, what a feast, all you can eat! We drove to a beach outside of Juneau, took a nap and then got groceries, filled the camper with water and diesel, eat dinner and head to the Ferry Dock to spend the evening, we check in for our ferry ride to Petersburg at 4:00 am. We drive onto the ferry about 5 am and the ferry departs around 6:15 am.

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View from our ferry departing from Juneau Alaska
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The ferry stopped at Kake Alaska around 2:30 pm to drop some passengers and let the people that had dogs walk them around. We had breakfast and lunch on the ferry, they had decent food and prices. We get to Petersburg around 6:30 pm, what a beautiful little town coming in on the ferry!

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We eat dinner in town and head to the campground about 10 miles away, boy it’s been a long day!

The next day we drive into Petersburg and go to the Clausen Museum, they had a nice history of the town of Petersburg. We walked to Sing Lee Alley and Sons of Norway to check out and photograph.

Sons of Norway Hall
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We headed back to camp and went on a walk to a little creek down the road, no wildlife but it was pretty!

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The next day we drive to Petersburg to photograph the old Lutheran church and one of the members working on the flower garden invited us to church services the next day. We walked around town and I photographed Hammer Slough, what a beautiful area with all the old houses on stilts!


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We eat lunch in town and then drive up Sandy Beach Rd., stopping at a little picnic area, Sandy Beach, and then continue on for about 6 miles after the asphalt ends.

Sandy Beach Rd., Petersburg Alaska
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Sandy Beach Recreation Area, Petersburg Alaska
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The road follows the coast line with beautiful sights where the trees are clear but finally gets bumpy and twisty enough to where we decide to turn around.

Frederick Dr. is a backroad coming from the Sandy Beach Recreation Area, Petersburg Alaska
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I talked to a resident at the Hammer Slough earlier that said we might be able to see the Northern Lights tonight if conditions were good, so we decided to go to this little overlook at the edge of town looking north and see if we get lucky enough to see the Northern Lights. We got to talk to some of the locals walking by and got to see and photograph a beautiful sunset of Frederick Sound and Devil’s Thumb! It started clouding up and by 11 pm we decided it wasn’t going to happen so we drove back to camp.

Sue & Peanut on a large driftwood in front of Devil's Thumb, Frederick's Sound, Petersburg, Alaska
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Sunset at Devil's Thumb, Petersburg Alaska
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Sunset on Frederick's Sound, Petersburg Alaska
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The next morning we drive into Petersburg and get some coffee at the coffee house and then drive to Petersburg Lutheran Church for Sunday service. It was a nice worship service and everyone was so welcoming. They insisted we come to the fellowship hall afterwards for coffee and snacks, it really was interesting to talk to the locals about life on their island.

We drive to Blind River and walked the trail to the river. We talk to a couple of new residents and they said we just missed a couple of bears that were across the river catching salmon. We talked about why they would move to Petersburg, such a remote area of Alaska. After watching a couple eagles soaring around we walk back to the camper.

Blind River, Petersburg Alaska
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We head into Petersburg where we have dinner at the Chinese restaurant across from the ferry dock.

Old shack near the Petersburg Marina and dock
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Sunset from the ferry dock in Petersburg Alaska
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We park at the ferry dock parking lot because we need to catch the ferry to Ketchikan at 1:00 am. We drive onto the ferry about 2 am and check into our stateroom to catch some sleep


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We get up about 8 am and go get breakfast and get a seat in the front of the ferry. We arrive in Ketchikan around noon and unload and drive into town to the visitor center. We drive to our campground on the north end of the island, check in, eat dinner and go for a walk around the area.

The next day we drive to Totem Bight State Park, walking around and listening to a tour guide talking about the history of the totem poles in the Ketchikan area, it was pretty interesting!

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We drove to downtown Ketchikan and walked around, had lunch and photographed some old churches while Sue shopped.

The next day we drive to Ward Lake and walk the trail around the lake.

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We go to lunch and then drive to Tegan Air for the Misty Fjords Flight. It was a tough airplane to photograph out of, but they let us out on the pontoon of the plane in the middle of the lake to enjoy the sights (after landing of course, LOL), that was pretty cool! I really didn’t get many good photos from this ride on the plane.

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We drove to Creek Street after that, took some photos and had a nice dinner at the New York Café.

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The next day we drive into Ketchikan, eat lunch, walk around Creek Street again and go to the Totem Historical Museum, it was so-so.

As a Plumber, I had to get a pic of the old time plumbing in Dolly Arthur's House of Ill Repute
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View from the boardwalk of Ketchikan Alaska
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We drive to the Saxman Totem Park where they had some neat totem poles.

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Then we drive to Herring Bay to look for bears by the salmon hatchery, no bears though, but a nice Great Blue Heron!

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We’ve been saying prayers for my daughter Stacey because she finally told me that her Crohn’s Disease had flared up again and she had been in and out of the hospital. (Update - 12/01/2017 - Stacey is doing much better now that they have found a medication that is stabilizing her Crohn's Disease and not upsetting her liver.)

A cruise ship breaks through the mist as we depart on the ferry from Ketckican
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We stay at the Safeway parking lot tonight as we have to catch our ferry for Prince Rupert at 4 am, we get to the ferry dock about 4 am and load onto the ferry at 5:30 am and the ferry leaves at 6:30 am. Our ferry ride is about 6 hours long, we drive off the ferry and right to the border crossing into Canada.

Prince Rupert container dock, BC Canada
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We check into our campground and head into Prince Rupert where we take Peanut running in the park and then we go to dinner and back to camp.

I am going to end Part 5 here, August 11.


2018' RAM 3500 Laramie CC, DRW, 4X4, Cummins w/ Aisin transmission
2019' Host Mammoth, 480 watts of solar
2017' Jeep JKU Rubicon
2011' Airstream Avenue
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jmtandem

western nevada

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Posted: 12/02/17 08:29am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Wow! Really nice pictures. Thanks.


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gat75

Toledo Bend Dam

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Posted: 12/02/17 06:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Very beautiful picts, especially for those of us who are just drooling at the mouth to see such sights in person!





oilcan4

New York

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Posted: 12/02/17 09:30pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Terrific pictures and commentery,some day DW and I willmake same trip.You mentioned a family member has Chrons, my daughter was diagnosed 9 years ago. tried every medicine our there and none worked, until we started infusion doses of RHEMICADE 7 years ago. it saved her life no side effects. Shes 22 now and a first year apprentice in my union OPERATING ENGINEERS local 30 NYC. Her goal is an F-350 with a fifth wheel behind it. PM me at OILCAN6@OPTIMUM.NET if u need to any time. all the best

c.traveler2

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Posted: 12/02/17 10:27pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Mark, another excellent tale of your fabulous adventure with wonderful photos to go along with it!


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GoinThisAway

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Posted: 12/03/17 09:29am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

You're making it awfully hard for me to keep working until retirement!


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billyray50

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Posted: 12/04/17 07:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Fantastic pics and trip report!

Nemo667

Louisiana

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Posted: 12/04/17 09:32am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Exceptional pictures Mark. We opted out of the ferry system past Juneau and drove back to the states from Skagway. You two had an awesome trip!

Ben & Tory


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whazoo

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Posted: 12/04/17 07:57pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Geez Mark I wish you'd take a bad picture every now and then so I could feel better about myself. On the flip side I now know enough about Alaska from your tr's to be an Alaskan guide! Beautiful trip, Mark and Sue, thanks mucho!!

GpnAZ

Phoenix

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Posted: 12/04/17 08:06pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jmtandem - Thanks for looking and your comments!

gat75 - Thanks for looking and your comments!

oilcan4 - Thanks for your nice comments and Alaska is a trip of a lifetime, so don't wait too long! Glad to hear your daughter is doing well and I will check into that medication, thank you and God bless!

c.traveler - Thanks for your nice comments Alex and hope you're getting along good with your new camera!

GoinThisAway - Forget work, just go!! I know, easier said then done, thanks for looking!

billyray50 - Thanks for looking and the nice comments!

Nemo667 - Thanks Ben & Tory, we really enjoyed the ferry system, though it can have a tough schedule sometimes on the departures! I know you enjoyed yours immensely also, it was fun seeing some of your pictures from the same areas!

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