Chowder, calamari, shrimp, 'n fish... So damn good that we ordered it twice
Purple starfish on the Oregon coast.
The awesome Oregon coast.
We've started jogging along parts of our daily hikes. On this particular hike, we started running through the forest with our arms out, jumping off of rocks and logs, hooting and hollering, and being lost in the moment. Completely amused, I laughed and said, We're running around the forest like wild people. Both of them stopped dead in their tracks, and gave me a look that only a teenager can muster; the look of complete and absolute 'what kind of ridiculous adult things are you dribbling out of your mouth. Then the simultaneous response, We are wild people. Fair enough. I suppose we are. #dawsonstyle
Right at home with the Ewoks.
Exploring the giant redwoods.
View from the top.
Yosemite falls. Our hike for the day.
Sierra Nevada views.
Northern Nevada nimbus. (also known as, the road trip begins)
Roadside reflections with rain.
Traditional totems, kayaks, and gorgeous red cedar construction.
After eight and a half months, there isn't any more snow on the ground. Ten days ago was the end of winter; last week was spring. Here's a short video of Rampart winter fun: youtu.be/OkdVO70OdXY You can always see more at my website: mattwdawson.com Or my YouTube channel: Matt W. Dawson
Rainy day explorations in an abandoned building, complete with rope ladder. - - - Unconventional stalactites. Nature doesn't stop her wonderous work, regardless of where she is.
Well..... I haven't shaved since arriving to the Alaskan bush nearly 10 months ago. Today was the day. I'm gonna miss that perfectly horrible and ornerous moustache. Or, maybe not... ;) #feels-like-my-face-is-gonna-float-away
What a difference a week makes.... One week ago, there was snow on the ground and 4 ft (1.3 m) of ice covering the Yukon River. Today, all the snow is gone, the trees are covered with leaves, birds are singing.
This is the landing strip for planes, but we use it for all kinds of stuff.... Running track, moose hunting spot, observation point, and shooting range. Today, it's our softball field (with a four-wheeler and a pallet as a backstop). #onlyinalaska
Sunset has almost become sunrise.
Yukon River break up. Yesterday, the ice on the Yukon opened.... just like that. Chunks of ice, some the size of houses, navigate themselves to the ocean, over a thousand miles away. For the first time in seven months, the river is flowing freely. It's surreal and eerie and absolutely magnificent. #nofilter on this picture to better appreciate the mood.
Traditional muktuk. Muktuk, a delicacy throughout the region, is whale skin and blubber. It is eaten either pickled or frozen and raw (as pictured here). The high fat content in a single piece will keep you warm all day. There aren't any whale in this area (we are several hundred miles away from the coast), so this was traded in exchange for local salmon. Salmon from this part of the Yukon River is highly valued as they have higher oil levels than other parts of the river. This is the same trade that has taken place for thousands of years; the people from the interior trade salmon to the coastal peoples in exchange for whale. It's satisfying to be a part of these timeless negotiations. The cutting board is less traditional.
Still plenty of snow on the ground, but time to put the skis away for a little while.
A few bumps on the taxi ride home. - - - Still snowing along the banks of the frozen Yukon River.
Winter wanes and weakens in the perpetual wrestle with daylight.
So, you want to be happy? Then stop letting the small things ruining your entire day. If you're feeling stressed, ask yourself, 'Will this matter one year from now?' If the answer is yes, then do something about it. If the answer is no, then let it go. If you feel bored, do something unexpected, be spontaneous. Take a risk. Let yourself be happy. - - - Canadian geese and Trumpeter swans have returned. Even better than a groundhog ;)
I was invited to share a story on a podcast all about traveling. Check it out at: Travel for a Loop by Ryan Bedell. The podcast can be found on Spotify, SoundCloud, and iTunes. Enjoy amigos!
Another round of You know you are in Alaska when: 1. You know that this is school recess in the spring and not in the winter. 2. Elders and the band always eat first, ALWAYS! 3. You know what a tote bath is, and you take one because it's better than the alternatives. 4. There's always a reason to have a get together and a small fire. 5. Public Service Announcements are for real. 6. You still do a cake walk, but.... you win beer instead of a cake. 7. There is a back-up outhouse (for emergencies, guests, or... back-ups.....) 8. Everyone dances to every song. Strict dress code of informal warm industrial (Carhartt overalls and Muck boots because it's a blazing hot temperature of 20° F/-5° C) for everyone, including the band. 9. Everything is insured by Smith & Wesson. 10. Students need a break from class and ask to skin the animals they have trapped.
Alaska sunrise. We are past halfway in our transition from total darkness to total daylight. Over a six month period, there is an average gain of one hour of sunlight each week, only to shift into an average loss of one hour of sunlight each week. And the cycle continues.
Ice in motion. Poetry at its finest.
Can you spot the snowshoe (Arctic) hare in each photo? He's there..... The fur of many animals in the Arctic completely changes color with the season, one of the many adaptations needed to survive in this harsh environment. It is spectacular to see and is quite unique to animals on this region (it is considered a biological phenomenon). More than camouflage, it is thought that this change helps with heat conservation.
Views of the Great One, Denali.
Wolf tracks in fresh snow. This single wolf is loping along this frozen creek after finding an open spot for water. The lop-sided gait and toe claw drags in the snow are the tell-tale signs that it is a wolf. - The same wolf tracks next to my size 12's (46 EU). This is a big guy!
Animal highway. In a constant search for food and water, animals move along the frozen river to avoid the deep snow. Here are tracks left from previous travelers.... wolf, wolverine, lynx and moose.
Dancing on the big stage. A weekend of singing and celebration for the entire village.
A collection of the world's first electric cars: - 1913 Argo - 1917 Owen Magnetic: 26 horsepower with a top speed of 60 mph (100 km/h); Factory price of $3,650 - Under the hood
A trip to town = a trip to the museum. The Museum of the North is a fascinating portrayal of life in the Arctic. Here is featured: -Traditional dress with beadwork from the interior of Alaska. -Traditional handmade birch bark canoe with stunning craftsmanship. -Several traditional harpoons and bows. -Seal bladder water bag. -Spruce and rawhide snowshoes, another example of stunning craftsmanship.
The majestic Guardian of the Museum
Windswept trees collect the drifting snow; nature's natural flocking. Haunting and chic; austere yet inviting.
Sunset with bullet holes.
One of the amazing things about the light this time of year, is that the path of the sun is so low in the sky, it is essentially a sunrise/sunset all day long.