03 September 2013

Day 16

Juneau, AK

"I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better." Ephesians 1:17

Our Juneau stay was not what I thought it would be.

First, the town is tiny. There is no road out of Juneau. You must come and go by boat or plane. Not the grand display of economic and populous density that other capital cities claim, but immensely more charming.
The City of Juneau

Second, we did not do any of the things we had originally decided to do. Our stay was way more low-key, and while it might taste a little bitter, it was certainly not the last opportunity for many of the same adventures in different Alaskan locations. We had a wonderful rest from hectic travelling. 

Had the best night's sleep. Thank goodness! We slept from 8:30 to 7:30 and had breakfast at The Sandpiper Cafe again. So good.
It was as terrible as it looks.

After breakfast, we packed up and parked downtown to explore the shops. 
Where the Bright Little Ladies Work

The Sandpiper, Rockwell (where we ate dinner last night), and our lunch spot- Island Pub- was recommended by one of my dear friend’s friends. Gin and her husband live in Juneau and own Alaska Zipline Adventures. I was so sad we didn’t get to meet this trip. She was awesome to share some of these places with us, and they definitely did not disappoint. 
Best Pizza EVER

We left downtown Juneau for what we thought would be our next big adventure. What we got instead was an oil change. It was on our itinerary already, but when we dropped it off and they said it would be an hour, we did not expect that to mean well over 3 hours. Hubs had called "that Lee guy" this morning, but Les Schwab Tire Center didn't take appointments. We walked with Jess to Fred Meyer. (Fred Meyer is like if Walmart and a department store had a baby store named Fred Meyer.) Hubs stayed outside with Jessie while I went in to buy her a new harness. The collar deal is just not doing it for us anymore. I bought one; we tried it on; too small. Hubs went in to exchange the small for a medium. Too big. I went in again to return it. By that time, we thought, we should hurry to get back for the car!  Then, we thought, we set up camp and head out to the hiking trails around Mendenhall Glacier! 

Our plans for Juneau was zip lining, kayaking, and glacier hiking. We went 0 for 3. Hubs didn't want to zip line, we didn't have the right gear (we did, just not the right information) about kayaking, and glacier hiking was replaced with that jerk Lee Schwab stealing our last hope for such Alaskan activity.

We stayed in Auke Village Campgrounds. The campsite was not even registered on our GPS, but this was the one the two little ladies recommended- one lives right by it- so we had a little map they had provided. It is about 15-20 mins outside of downtown and less than a mile past the Ferry Terminal, where we have to be at 5am. As soon as we turned off, we caught views through the trees of the Bay and knew we were guided to an off-the-beaten-path treasure. Without the option of a waterview, we carefully picked #10- closer to the bathroom and farther from everyone else. Every site had a short parking place, sturdy picnic table, round fire pit, large rock outline, and flat gravel ground for a tent.

Please allow me to take a moment to explain the blow-up mattress. We decided to not let the movers pack our blow-up mattress for these reasons:
1) Where would we sleep for the four nights after they took our bed? BU mattress.
2) What about the ___ nights after we arrive in Anchorage before we receive our property shipment? BU mattress.
3) If we stay with friends and family along the way without an extra bed, we have the BU mattress!
So, when Hubs presented two ginormous sleeping bags among all the other items we needed to fit in our mid-size sedan, I asked, "Will the blow-up mattress fit in our tent?" Hubs would act like he was forced into an unmanly camp situation if you ask him, but he appreciated the idea. Back to the happenings...

After we set up, we walked down to the water. We followed an over-grown trail with dense towering pine trees down, climbed down a small bolder wall to the pebble-covered beach. Mussels were scattered all over. We met a sweet woman and her beautiful old retriever. She told us that her and her late husband would gather mussels and let them open in the fire to eat. She said when the tide is out, you can gather them by the handful. We opted out this trip, but Jessie was on the lookout. She has never smelled such smells.
Digging for Mussels
We ate dinner at another place Gin recommended. The Sandbar is known for their Hailbut fish & chips. So good, so greasy, so fresh. It was a strange bar-diner-game-room set-up, not very crowded. The eclectic group included one foul-mouthed man down at the bar, a charismatic young girl running the diner, a cute family of four playing in the game room including a happy dad scooping us his 2-year-old daughter to dance to the Lumineers.

Back at camp, we got water and sat outside for a short time before bed.

"Hubs, what is your favorite part so far? Mine is this! ...I couldn't even wait for you to answer- I just had to say my favorite part. I can't even tell you had glad I am that we're doing this."

Drip. Drop.

No comments:

Post a Comment