Friday, September 30, 2011


After the Ninilchik trip (see previous entry listed right) it was back to work at the campground. Life slowed down as the Silver run was OK this year, but not spectacular. My camp hosts and I went back to the Deshka River with I Fish Alaska and fished for Silver Salmon. We each caught our three a day limit and had a great time again. It's worth it just to be out on the beautiful river. Life at the campground was nice. We finished painting all the picnic tables and the camp hosts had the grounds clean of all trash. It's hard to realize that some people have no respect for the earth and continue to just dump their trash. Where's our Crying Native when we need him??
At any rate, it was a lovely end to summer and closing of the campground.
I made a quick trip back east to visit my 85 year old Mom, see my family and some friends and work for a few days on a sitcom called, "Are We There Yet?" Nice people, cute show. While I love the beauty of the countryside back east, it is far too crowded for my taste and I was glad to return to Alaska.
Autumn was in full swing when I got back. The shades of yellow are just lovely in the fading sunshine. I've been running my four dog team and they are doing great! Temperatures drop into the 20's at night and rise into the 40's during the day. It's a great time of year.
The Willow Dog Mushers, of which I am currently President, held their 4th K9 Athlete Symposium. It was a huge success and a lot of fun. So much to see and do. Here's a blog with photos of the day:K9 Athlete Symposium
A day trip yesterday with fellow Parks employees was the perfect way to end September. We drove north on the Parks Highway to the Veteran's Memorial. Stopping at the Princess Lodge first  for a photo op with the Mountain made me realize how much I love it up here. We decided to continue north to Cantwell where we had lunch at the lodge there. A little known place as it is back off the highway. Food was very good. We were surprised to see snow along the road way. It must have fallen overnight. Termination dust was evident everywhere. Broad Pass was it's usual spectacular self. It was a day of laughs and friendship and just being.
Today was a clean up the yard day with help from a friends' son. He's a good kid and a good worker. After I took him home, I stopped for one last fall photo from Hatcher Pass Rd.
Enough talk, pictures tell a better story. Enjoy!

Sky reflected in the Deshka River--glorious day for fishing!

The limit of coho salmon for us!

At home, the flowers are in full bloom.

Side of my house with full flower boxes.
That's Fritter laying at the bottom of the stairs

Close up of sweet peas.

Fireweed in the back yard dog lot.

Meanwhile, back at the campground folks are fishing for Silver Salmon.
A little Ermine visited me at the fee booth.

Spent opening day at the State Fair--did I say I love State
Fairs? Stepped in the petting zoo with the Alpaca. CUTE!!

I also love goats. Had one as a kid. Her name was Maude.

And this was a sweet llama.

The end of August I celebrated by 62nd birthday!

This is why I love working at Willow Creek. My view from
the fee booth.

Fall started early this year I thought. The fireweed topped out early too.


A place to just be.

A grey jay visits.
Clouds roll over the Talkeetna Mountains.

A fun thing at home. The dog lot was fenced. My huskies
were insanely happy to have more room to run!

Chena likes the new area.

Fritter and Nahanni check out the fence line.

Back at the Willow Creek, The Alaska Range glows in the distance.

Autumn has started along the Susitna River.
Mt. Foraker
A quick trip back east and a wonderful visit with family and friends.

Rainbow over the fields.

I took my Mom for a drive through the Gettysburg Battlefield when
we happened upon a cavalry performance.

Heading home to Alaska we flew over the Susquehanna River.
Still very high from all the flooding. That's Three Mile Island to the left.

My house in Autumn. 

Time to run dogs--photo by my friend Sarah.

Leprechaun Condos!
My view of the team.
View from the Parks Hwy on the way to Wasilla.

Termination dust on Pioneer Peak.
Willow Lake--above and below

Backyard tree

Storm over the Talkeetnas.

Denali from the Princess Lodge pull off.

The full Alaska Range.
Denali from the Veteran's Memorial. It was almost clouded over.
Veteran's Memorial

High bush cranberries I believe.

Spectacular day.
Falling leaves over Byers Lake.
Broad Pass--next few photos. I love this area. I usually take a lunch
and stop at one of the pull outs to eat and enjoy the scenery.

Termination dust on the Alaska Range.
If you've driven the Parks Highway, no doubt you have seen
the Igloo. It was built to be a B&B. Supposedly, at one time,
it was quite lavish inside. Unfortunately, someone has trashed it.
It is for sale and as the front door was broken down, we
wandered in. I've always been fascinated by dome buildings.
One of the hallways on the bottom floor. It curves.
Looking up, you can see the next two floors. Someone
with money and vision could make this such a unique place.
The center ceiling. Look at the wood!
The final shot of fall. Taken on Willow Fishhook Rd, aka Hatcher Pass Rd.
Looking over the Matanuska Susitna Valley. Winter is on the way!


  1. Oh, Donna, how beautiful. Remeniscing along many of these pictures almost brings me to tears. The beauty of the Mat Su Valley....and Denali, and all the rest. Loved it then, and memories now are still quite vivid. We had hoped to come to AK again, but don't think that it's going to happen. Love Alaska....

  2. I went to the igloo also, and thought, what a neat place this could be if only I had the money to fix it! I try to get to Ak. often, but this and last year went by without my visit. Hotels are so pricey, and I would like to find someone to stay with if I would ever get back.