Monday, January 31, 2011

Mendenhall Glacier

Wow, we have a new favorite glacier! It's the most accessible and most frequently visited in Alaska, but those stats are from summer. We went to the Mendenhall Glacier in winter and it was AMAZING!

In front of the glacier lies Mendenhall Lake, which is frozen over at this time of year. Visitors can walk or skate across the lake, right up to some of the large chunks of ice that have calved off the glaciers. 

We walked across the lake, dazzled by the sun sparkling on the snow and ice, and we had the best fun playing around on the icebergs!

State Capital

After more than a year living in the biggest city in the biggest state in the greatest nation on earth, we hadn't managed a trip to southeast Alaska. This is Alaska's most popular tourist destination so we had to go. We cashed in some air miles and flew down to Juneau for the weekend.

The weather was absolutely perfect and we had a great captain on the flight down. He turned the commute into a scenic tour, pointing out mountains and glaciers and stars and lakes. It was incredible!

Although legislation is in session now, it was very quiet in Alaska's State Capital. A lot of shops were closed for the off season, but we enjoyed a stroll around town. We attended the Juneau Symphony's performance of Holst's Planets Suite, which was very good.

On Sunday we went on a lazy drive to the end of the road in Juneau, and around Douglas Island. The landscape was beautiful. What a great trip!

Monday, January 17, 2011


We went to the Anchorage Curling Club's "Learn-To-Curl" event this weekend. There were a few slips and a lot of slides, but soon we were all gliding smoothly down the sheet, throwing our stones, clearing the hog line, and landing in the house. Our sweep strokes added a dynamic dimension to our curls and we had a super time urging our stones along.

Our last game came down to the wire and we had to get out the measuring tape. Our yellow stone just lost out by an inch.

We only won one game in the end, but since the winners had to clean the ice, our team was happy to lose that last one!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Road Trip

We decided to take a little road trip down to Seward, once again stopping at Turnagain Pass to try some snowshoeing. The views along the coastal highway were spectacular, and the snowshoeing was much more adventurous than last time. At one stage, Daniel's brother was chest-deep in snow and halfway up a tree at the same time!

Sunrise over Cook Inlet (at 11:00am!)

Daniel, showing us how it's done

Brian, stuck in a hole

Turnagain Pass

Brian, Daniel, Vanessa, Susan & Justine

Seward Harbor

Monday, January 3, 2011

Bob's Sleds

Our friendly Alaskan neighbor, Bob White, lent us his flexi-flyer sleds, designed for racing on ice. After a practice run each, we engaged in some serious family races. The clear winner was Daniel's mom!

Snow Fun!

Daniel's family visited us for Christmas and New Year, and we tried to squeeze a lifetime of snowy activities into two weeks. Top of the list was Phineas the Zimbabwean Snowman.

We also hit the sledding slopes with the brave Alaskan children, and although we may have had a few too many tumbles and falls, our smiles were frozen to our faces the whole time!

We also hit the bigger slopes at Hilltop Ski Area where Daniel's brother was constantly thwarted by trees, ski poles and deep snow.