We camped in our reclining plastic chairs on the deck of the M/V Columbia, the largest of the Alaska Marine Highway ferry boats, and enjoyed spectacular views and clear weather for two out of three days on our trip up the Inside Passage. Amy described it as a cross between camping and begin on a cruise ship. We met a few interesting folks, watched a couple of movies and heard some fascinating nature lectures by a young forest ranger who looked a lot like our friend Jonas and sounded just like our other friend Darrin. What an interesting mix, we thought, especially since Jonas and Darrin are such good friends themselves.

The entire journey took 65 hours, during which time we stopped in Ketchikan, Wrangell, Petersburgh and Juneau, and our final destination, Haines, where Sampa, Amy and the Toyota all entered Alaska for the very first time. From there, it was a long, but very beautiful two day drive across Northern BC, Southern Yukon, and Eastern Alaska, across expanses of broad valleys full of tundra and aspen forests, all of which were in full autumn color. We saw very few pine trees in this part of Canada, and learned that millions of trees here have also been decimated by the pine beetles. Entire forests have been wiped out, and after talking with a local man about the matter, we learned that recent variations in winter temperatures have very little to do with the infestations, as we have been told are the reasons back in Colorado. Any comments on this from our forestry friends?

So here we are now, living in our friend Eric’s basement in Anchorage, Alaska, and asking ourselves the burning question:

“Now what?” 

Therein lies our adventure, since we really have no idea what will happen as we begin our life up here, although I have a pretty good feeling that there are lots of pictures to take, and a great rewarding job to be found for Amy.

We’ll keep you posted.

Quick note from Sampa:

“Although I weathered the weeklong trip like a true adventure kitty, I am VERY happy to be out of the truck.