Magical Mystery Tour

So what of the other 5 days of my recent Alaska trip? We left our intrepid adventurers here:

The cushiest hitch-hiking spot ever (no we didn't hitch in the white truck).

The cushiest hitch-hiking spot ever (no we didn’t hitch in the white truck).

baking in the heat just below Hatcher Pass, trying to assemble the next piece of the plan. Martin was the best possible partner, because he kept saying “where can we have the most fun?” Fortunately, I had the answer.

Kudos to Josh who picked us up roadside, and drove us all the way to Anchorage airport. On the way I booked a cheap rental car, and called another friend:

Mackenzie. On-sites hosting like a boss.

Mackenzie. Hosts last minute like a boss.

My last trip to see Mackenzie was one of the first adventures on this blog, and I frankly I couldn’t wait to visit the amazing corner of the world she lives in again. Along the way, we got some Thai food in the middle of nowhere:

Don't miss this.

Don’t miss this.

and caught rare views of the deepest wild around:

Mt Wrangell, from the Richardson Highway.

Mt Wrangell, from the Richardson Highway.

On a clear spring day, Valdez, Alaska might be the most beautiful place I’ve ever been. Having left Anchorage early on Wednesday morning, there were still time for turns at Thompson Pass that afternoon:

Stoke on.

Stoke on.

Are we really here? Doing this?

Are we really here? Doing this?

Martin, doing THAT.

Martin, doing THAT.

So I had been itching for a hard core wilderness adventure. Conditions as they were though, it just wasn’t right. I’ve never really gone “vacation backcountry skiing” (or know that existed)- but in spring, in Valdez, that’s the ticket.

Apres ski- Valdez style.

Apres ski- Valdez style.

Staying with Mackenzie, Ben, Hope, and Matt (HUGE THANKS), we had a real kitchen, boat rides after skiing, and a chance to connect with some of the local contingent- just 30 minutes drive from the top of the pass.

Trip highpoint: Girls Mountain. Amazing turns, amazing place.

Just so good.

I work with Martin, and while I’ve never traveled with a co-worker on this scale I couldn’t ask for a better partner. Our razor towards fun served us well, and hope we can share more adventures in the future.

Harbor-side views from The Fat Mermaid...

Harbor-side views from The Fat Mermaid…

Wild harvested muscles over an open fire in Prince William Sound.

Wild harvested mussels over an open fire in Prince William Sound.

Sometimes, you can’t accept what’s presented to you- and sometimes it’s wiser to jump straight into what’s available. We didn’t end up doing anything that we planned. We had a ton of fun, and embraced the truly special place that Alaska continues to hold in my heart. I couldn’t ask for any more.

Valdez Multi-sport day: skiing, rock climbing, beer drinking, and swimming...

The perfect way to dive into this place.

 

 

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