Saturday, July 30, 2011

Valdez to Chicken, July 24, 2011

Woke up to rain in Valdez the morning of our departure. We were hoping to stop and get some photos of the area as we traveled back through Keystone Canyon and along the Thompson Pass past Worthington Glacier. We set off and stopped at the Forest Service shack to check on the arrival of the salmon…none yet. We hooked up the tow car and got on the road. We did stop at the Worthington Glacier visitor center and walked up to the observation area. It is actually most spectacular from up on the road looking down on the entire glacier. It was cold and spitting rain. Wanted to get back where it was dry. The area was still beautiful even though we had rain and clouds and fog. This road to Valdez on the Richardson Highway may be the most spectacular drive of our journey.
Our plan is to get to Chicken, AK, to drive the Top of the World Highway to Dawson City, YT. This part of the trip will take us back on the Richardson Highway connecting with the Tok Cutoff to Tok, AK, heading down the Alaska Highway and cutting off on the Taylor Highway to Chicken. We’ll see what it’s like when we get along further up the road. Don’t know where we will stop to camp.
We actually drove all the way to Chicken and camped at the Gold Camp RV Park and Outpost. There is really nothing in Chicken but this camp and another and three or four other business in the “town” of Chicken…a merchantile, a bar, a cafĂ© and maybe another. Jim and I parked the rig in a no hookup pullthrough and walked to the “town”. We walked through the merchantile (souvenirs) and continued on next door to the bar. It had to be the smallest bar I’d seen with junk all over the walls and ceiling. The bartender looked like one of Jimmy’s friends and was from Philadelphia. One of his mother’s cousins owned the bar so he worked here last summer and this summer. We talked to a miner who had formerly worked as an oil hand in Louisiana….small world. It is so much fun meeting all these colorful people.
We ate in the motorhome and settled in for the night before we tackled the Top of the World Highway.

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