Tuesday, July 19, 2011
The Kenai Penisula, Alaska
Picked up the car from the shop in Anchorage and went back downtown to hopefully see Mt. McKinley. It’s a beautiful today after a day of rain yesterday. We didn’t see McKinley this morning but did see mountains across the Cook Inlet. The weather is perfect for travel to Homer. The drive was amazing. The Sterling Highway followed Turnagain Bay with mountains all around. We saw some surfers using parachutes to move them through the water. Also saw plane refuel a helicopter in midair. There is no way to capture the beauty of this drive.
We were planning to stop in Soldotna but there was traffic..traffic..traffic! We pulled into the Fred Meyer’s and it was full of motorhomes, fifth wheels and all kinds of Rv’s. I called and found a campground a little further down the highway at Kasilof…The Decanter Inn and RV Park. Not very busy there. We went to the restaurant/bar after setting up and had a beer. The owners are from Louisiana!! Go figure. We went back into Soldotna and had Mexican food…too much to eat but very good. We parked at the Visitor’s Center and walked on the boardwalk along the Kenai River. There were people there cleaning very large salmon they had caught. Not many others fishing. We found the local brewery…Kenai Brewery. Went in to have some “tastings”. Very nice beer and a very nice guy serving! Met a lady who came in for some tastings too. She is on her way to Kodiak...she’s with the Coast Guard. After that we went back to the rig. We are planning to leave the next morning to finish our trip to Homer and hope to visit Kenai before we pull out.
Got up the next morning and set out for Kenai.
Drove to the city and found a little park on a bluff overlooking the mouth of the Kenai River. There were at least one thousand, maybe two, standing along the mouth and even into the water. It was prime time for the running of the reds…Sockeye Salmon. The only people allowed to dip net salmon are Alaskans…we couldn’t do it. It was amazing to see. The nets were large…some five feet in diameter on long poles. The tide was going out and people just stood on the banks or in the water with these nets catching salmon. Each head of household is allowed 25 salmon and each other member is allowed 10 each. A family of five could go home with 65 salmon! After the big morning run we went down to the beach and met a guy netting. He was originally from Arizona but had moved to Alaska years ago. That’s the normal story…they visit and never go back! After doing some more exploring around the area we got back on the road headed toward Homer.