Day 34 – Haines, AK to Juneau, AK

Day 34 – Haines, AK to Juneau, AK     09/23/10     Mileage:  Local mileage and a ferry ride! 

Morning came and it was not as cold as it had been and was also dry. After cooking breakfast, Phil, Kelly and I made our way to the ferry terminal to hopefully catch the ferry to Juneau! 

Haines Ferry Terminal

 

Rebecca and Kevin (the biker from NY I met yesterday) already had confirmed tickets, but Phil, Kelly and I would have to play the waiting game. 

Kevin and his FZ6...all the way from NYC...

 

The M/V Matanuska

 

 A ferry this size takes a long time to load, but after 3 hours of waiting…we got the OK to board…sweet! 

Strapping the bike down for the ferry ride...

 

After boarding and strapping my bike down, Kevin, Rebecca, Phil, Kelly and I had a bite to eat and then adjourned to the bar for a few drinks. 

L to R: Rebecca, Kevin, Phil and Kelly

 

We didn't see a single whale....from the bar. Go figure?

 

Enjoying the great views from the top deck...

 

Looking back towards Haines...

 

The scenery was spectacular as we were surrounded by mountains for the entire 5 hour trip. We passed a few lighthouses and several gushing waterfalls….but no whale sightings. 

Nice lighthouse along the way...

 

Phil, Kelly and Rebecca were all staying a few days in Juneau to see the town, and with the “”Sea Alaska” pass I bought (at the recommendation of the ticket agent) I had that option as well, so I decided to do the same. I can also stay over in two other ports on my way to Prince Rupert, which after reading up on Sitka and Ketchikan, I’m planning on hitting at least one if not both of those…we’ll see. Dori (the gal I met in Denali) also lives in Juneau, so I’ll try and catch up with her as well.

Day 33 – Haines Junction, YT, Canada to Haines, AK

Day 33 – Haines Junction, YT, Canada to Haines, AK     09/22/10     Mileage: 153
 
Today was going to be a short run from Haines Junction, YT back across the US border to Haines, AK to hopefully catch a ferry south. The morning was chilly and overcast but dry, which is always welcome. The scenery was good but got better the closer I got to Haines.

  

View from the road to Haines...

 

View from the road to Haines

 

View from the road 2 miles from the Canada/US border...

 

View of the Chilkat River near Haines, AK

 

Glad I never stayed there....or ever had a reason to! 😛

 

I passed Kelly and Phil (the two Aussie’s  I camped with back in Seward) on the side of the road who had their camcorder pointed at a bald eagle. They were already on the stand-by list for the ferry tomorrow, and that’s what I needed to still do. Once in town I went straight to the ferry terminal to get on the stand-by list…..and was glad to see I was number 2 on the list behind them. At the terminal I also met another biker from NY on an FZ6. His name is Kevin and he’s doing a big loop around the US and Alaska…and is also on the ferry tomorrow.  

View of the fjord between Haines and the ferry terminal...

 

Haines, AK

 

Haines harbour...

 

After that I went to the Lighthouse Bar for lunch and a beer. Phil saw my bike parked out front and stopped in to tell me where they were camped, and given the hotel prices, I was going to cap with them.  

The Lighthouse Bar - Haines, AK

 

It's never to early for a Jagger....

 

They were off to do a hike, and I went down to the end of the bay to a creek where there were supposedly a mama grizzly and 3 cubs feeding on salmon. Sure enough, at the creek there was one mama grizz with three cubs and another with one cub…all gorging…or already gorged on salmon. That was a very cool sighting and I’m glad I got to see that before I left Alaska.  

On the way to see the salmon buffet...

 

Mama grizzly doing some fishing!

 

Mama and the tree cubs...

 

Mama grizz and the cubs...

 

Wouldn't I feel stupid getting attacked in front of this sign...as I stopped to take a picture of the sign that says not to stop!

 

Then it was back to the campground which also had a hotel with wifi in the lobby. In the lobby I met Rebecca and her Doberman Fiona. It turns out that she already knew of Phil and Kelly as they had been playing road hopscotch passing each other on the way to Haines. Alaska is a big state, but with so few roads….you bump into the same people time and again which is kind of funny. Kelly and Phil made a nice hearty camp dinner for the 4 of us, and I capped it off with some 12 year old scotch that Phil was carrying…nice!  

Nice work Phil and Kelly!

 

 Rebecca had gotten a room for her and Fiona in the hotel and retired early for the warmth and clean sheets. Phil, Kelly and I stayed up as long as we could until the cold chased them into their van and me into my tent for the night.