Train to Kalkeetna

Alaska Day 16 7/10/15

Another travel day.  This time I took the train from Anchorage to Talkeetna.  Signing up for the trail maintenance was really good for getting me to Alaska.  But it was really bad for being able to have much flexibility.  I have to be in Denali National Park on July 12. So all my time in Southeast Alaska had to work around that date.  I anticipated more of a need for reservations on the ferrys and hostels.  I jumped around more than I would have liked.  Too many travel days compared to play days.  But I know this won’t be my last trip up here and next time I can do it differently.

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I saw one moose from the train.  I was hoping for bears but didn’t get that lucky.  At one point there was an announcement that the top of Denali was visible.  Everyone started snapping pictures.  Then I noticed that I was taking photos of the wrong mountain.  I said that and everyone else said they were too.  Pretty funny. I sure hope I get a better view of the big mountain.

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I thought this was Denali

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But it was here....

As I was getting off the train I met Carly who was staying in the same hostel.  We walked to the cute town of Talkeetna together.  This town is the jumping off point for most climbs of Denali.  It’s the very end of climbing season and no hikers are around.  But there are hoards of tourists.  I want to be one of the only ones. We had a great lunch at The Spinach Bread trailer.

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Hostel

I went to the historical society museum for a really interesting talk about the history of mountaineering on Denali.

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The white is a huge relief map of Denali showing all routes and camps up the mountain

I walked over to the cemetery.

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Gates to the cemetery

There was a special wall with the list of all those who lost their lives on Denali or surrounding peaks.  The first one was in 1932.

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Sobering

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After walking around town a bit I met Carly and Charles (a fellow volunteer for the trail maintenance.) I had beer and dinner with them.

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