The photos below are what we saw.
has a Canon 7D with a 28-300mm L lens and was sitting in a
window seat, so he was able to get the photo above. Since
I did not take the photo, I am not sure where, exactly, we were
but it is clear that this is a really big mountain.
has huge mountain ranges that are both long and high. The
further north you go, the more ice and snow you see covering
them. The central valley in the photo above is a
glacier. A glacier is nothing more than an ice river that
flows slowly to the sea, bulldozing everything in its path.
weather could have been a bit clearer but we were thankful that
the flight was smooth and uneventful. This is another
large peak on our path into Fairbanks. Again, since I did
not take the photo I am not sure of the name of the mountain,
but my guess is Denali given the size of the mountain.
view of one of the glaciers below us. Glaciers move a
large volume of rock with them as they flow to the sea.
That rock is not visible here, but is rather covered by a thick
layer of snow that renders everything pristine white. This
view is of course the reason that BMW has a color named Arctic
picked us up at the airport and we headed directly to the
mountain cabin. From the highway we had a nice view of the
Alaska Range. We stopped at a viewpoint for a photo.
As I was
taking a photo, Roberto took a photo of me. During the
spring and summer, the entire valley below would be a swampy
riverbed filled with mud bogs and mosquitoes.
to make a "supply stop" en-route to the cabin and the location
of choice was a liquor store/growler bar where we could get our
on the highway south from Delta, we passed quite a bit of game
on the road. Dusk was coming and the animals were coming
out to feed.
Trans-Alaska Pipeline (TAP) parallels the road (or more
correctly, the road parallels the pipeline as the road was built
to support the pipeline) and our stopping point gave us a view
odd-looking objects on the posts are thermal radiators that help
vent heat from the oil passing in the pipeline. Unless the
heat is vented, the temperature will melt the permafrost and the
structure will collapse.
approaching and the setting sun highlighted the distant mountain
followed the Delta river south toward Paxon.
brought out the animals; above are moose.
more moose; there were many of them but not running as a herd.
arrived at Dan's cabin at Summit Lake just after sunset.
Note the wind turbine on the tower. The wind turbine in
combination with the solar cells on the side of the cabin
provide the bulk of the power needed for the cabin. Fuel
oil is used for heat.
a set of snowmobiles. These are powerful machines and
require substantial skill to operate (as I was to soon find out)
the other cabins in the back-country, there is no electric
service. Dan has a set of large 6V lead-acid batteries and
an inverter to provide electricity for the cabin.
house batteries are charged by a combination of this diesel
generator, the wind turbine and a solar array on the side of the
house. The generator is used only when necessary.
first order of the day was to top off the batteries with the
generator and then fill the water tank from the well. It is
left empty to prevent freeze damage.
sleeping quarters were downstairs; Roberto and I shared the bunk
upstairs kitchen had a nice living area.
fading sun showed some of the other cabins at Summit Lake.
are a number of glaciers in the nearby mountains.
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Photos and Text Copyright Bill Caid 2014, all rights
For your enjoyment only, not for commercial use.