I have several friends who can’t wait for spring to arrive and start doing outdoorsy things: gardening, road Trips, hikes, biking or simply going out for a walk. The topic of road trips turned in to renting a RV and driving around in Alaska. Vipul and I shared our adventure in Alaska a few years ago and then they asked me to send them a trip report. Few others asked about other road trips: Yellowstone, Yosemite, Jasper – Banff in Canadian Rockies and I thought of doing a series on National Parks of US. The ones that we have visited so far.
While Vipul and I have taken most of these trips before Varun, the photos are dated but the information is still valid.
First up, is our grand RV adventure in Alaska. We visited Kenai Fjord National Park, Denali National Park and Whittier while in Alaska. It’s the most popular itinerary for those who want a taste of Alaska – a bit of wildlife, white water rafting, glaciers and miles upon miles of pristine scenery. Now, Alaska has multitude of places to take in the wildlife, to see glaciers, to see bears in their natural habitat, or even see hump back whales. It’s hard to decide which ones to pick and which ones to leave out. There are also historic towns from Gold rush era where you can try your hand at panning. Fresh fish to entice you, fishing expeditions to try. It’s hard to narrow down. The best option is to rent a RV for 3 weeks, pick up a Milepost magazine that has details on lodging, restaurants, RV camps, activities and deals mile by mile. But when you don’t have 3 + weeks, choose one or two destinations and get a teaser like we did.
We flew from Seattle to Anchorage. We were excited to see so much light when the flight landed at 11:00pm, excited about the RV which we rented from Great Alaskan- it was so spacious and brand new, and generally excited to be on vacation 🙂
Next morning, after completing formalities at the office and a nice breakfast at the café next to Great Alaskan, we drove down to Wal-Mart for supplies and then were on our way to Seward. The drive was very scenic. We stopped along the way and took lots of pictures.
Seward is the gateway to Kenai Fjord National Park. We chose Kenai Fjord national park because we all wanted to see a lot of wildlife and also some glaciers. Day cruise and kayak are the popular ways to go see the fjords and the sea life – seagulls, bald eagles, whales, porpoises, otters, sea lions etc. We went on all day tour with Renown tours .
The day was cloudy, the water choppy and it even drizzled a bit. But we saw lots of wildlife. And even a glacier calve. The whales were very hard to photograph – they were quick, the boat was moving and it was cold.
While we were enthused for the first half, we were exhausted on the way back and dozed off.
On hindsight, May was probably a bit too early to go. It was still cold but we encountered fewer tourists and even with a last-minute we were able to get the RV reservations as well as bus tickets to visit Denali National Park. If you want to go in peak summer, do plan ahead. Book the RV’s upfront to avoid disappointment. Driving around in RV is something I will never forget. Sipping hot tea and eating hot Maggi noodles while enjoying the snow-clad mountains is a sight I will remember all my life.
Next stop on this trip was Denali National Park. Stay tuned for details in the next post.