On July 31, 2022, I made the long drive home to Texas from Cloudcroft to complete my two and a half month, 14,128 mile Road Trip to Alaska and home again. The first image is of a couple bull elk in the valley below Cloudcroft. It’s nice to return home to family and friends Benjamin Bear and I get a bit road weary after being away from home for about two months. It’s nice to see the lower gas prices in Texas. But, not so nice to return to 100-degree temperatures.
My Brother’s Two Cats
While visiting Cloudcroft, I took a picture of each of Chuck’s cats. Francesca is in the front window and Fanny is in the bedroom. Love those two.
Travel From Estes Park, Colorado To Albuquerque, New Mexico and Cloudcroft, New Mexico
On July 28th, I traveled from Estes Park to Albuquerque (My Birthplace). On the 29th, I had a good breakfast at Cracker Barrel and set out to get a selfie in front of the home where I was raised as a baby. I found a special public library that houses old telephone directories. The 1949 book showed my parents’ names, address and phone number and showed that my father was a student at the University of New Mexico. Traveling on to Cloudcroft, New Mexico to visit my brother, Chuck for a couple of days before returning home to Texas, I just had to capture the New Mexico skies. I passed through Carrizozo, an artist community with many burro sculptures before arriving at my brother’s cabin.
Estes Park, Colorado and the Rocky Mountain National Park
On July 26th and 27th, I camped at the Estes Park KOA. I captured an interesting cloud formation and reflection at Sprague Lake my first evening in RMNP. On the 27th, I drove the Fall River Road to the Alpine Visitor Center on Trail Ridge Road. I visited Chasm Falls. I saw a marmot, a deer, a bighorn ram and some elk I will most pictures of the wildlife later. After a brief stop at the Alpine Visitor Center I traveled to the western portion of RMNP before driving back to Estes Park.
Montana to Wyoming
On July 25th, I traveled from Butte, Montana to Jackson Hole, Wyoming to visit the Grand Tetons National Park again on my return home portion of my long road trip. I drove through a portion of Idaho still finding high gas prices as I drove over Tetons Pass for the first time. That’s my campsite in Gros Ventre Campground where I could only reserve one night because of large crowds visiting the GTNP. The afternoon does not offer good light for photographs of the mountains. I did want you to see that there are NO CAMPING signs in the park. I don’t know why the artist chose this time of day to work on her painting. I explored a few of the National Forest Access areas for camping when I return another time.
Bull Elk in Jasper National Park, Canada
I forgot to post these images I took of the bull elk alongside the highway near Jasper, Alberta in an earlier post!
Travel from Banff National Park, Canada to Butte, Montana
I spent the night in one of my favorite campgrounds in Banff National Park called Rampart Creek on the night of July 22nd. Then I departed early on July 23rd headed across the border and finally stopping in Butte, Montana. In Canada, they build bridges for the wildlife to safely cross the highways. The last picture is my campsite at the Butte KOA.
Travel from Hinton, Alberta, Canada to Banff National Park
These images were captured on July 22, 2022. The first images were taken around my Hinton, Alberta campsite. Notice the windshield split is growing. I was thinking about how I usually don’t like to stop in Jasper, Alberta because it seems like a place where many folks go to shop and eat out. I decided I should first go to the Visitors Center and ask about interesting places around the area for me to visit. I was told the Maligne Lake Road would be a good road to explore, so I did. I really enjoyed my hike along the Maligne Canyon Trail with all of the lovely waterfalls. However, the mosquitoes outnumbered me there, especially in the forested area. At the end of the road, of course, is where I found the lake. It was quite a recreational area for families. I did not see the moose who were advertised to see along the trail. They have two nice places to get a meal. My next stop was a popular site for many folks, the Athabasca Falls. Finally, the last images were taken around the Columbia Icefield area. The last image appeared to be a large group that was part of a caravan camping in their very large expensive motorhomes at the Columbia Icefield parking lot where the very nice Visitors Center is.
Travel from Prince Rupert, BC to Prince George, BC, Canada
On July 18th, after spending one week in Ketchikan, Alaska, I departed on the Matanuska Ferry from Ketchikan to Prince Rupert, BC, Canada. I departed around 2:15 PM and arrived in Prince Rupert about 9:45 PM. After driving off of the ferry, I sat in a long line of other vehicles coming off the ferry to pass through Canadian Customs, which took a very long time. Again, I was driving in the dark in search of a rest area to spend the night. When I later woke up, I found what a beautiful spot it was next to a lake. Down the road just beyond Terrace, BC, I believe a logging truck threw a rock into the middle of my windshield causing a starburst break that began to move in opposite directions. This damage requires a windshield replacement. My insurance company asked me to travel across Canada to have it replaced. I decided just to wait until I returned home to Texas. Spent the next night in an RV Campground in Prince George, BC and traveled on to Mount Robson Park and beyond.
Alaska Marine Highway Ferry Travel
On July 10, 2022, I traveled by ferry on the Matanuska from Haines, Alaska to Ketchikan, Alaska arriving in the dark in the early morning hours of July 11th. The Matanuska I was told had mechanical difficulties and had to be repaired in Juneau, Alaska which caused a 12-hour delay in scheduling. I originally was supposed to depart in the middle of the day. I did not actually depart until after 10:00 PM from the Haines Terminal. These images were taken with different lenses, and I did not take the time to arrange them in sequential order. Because I had to check out of my RV Campground site at 11:00 AM, I hung out in a rest area not far from the terminal building for several hours. After picking up my boarding passes and vehicle tags, I parked in a holding lane until we could begin loading onto the ferry. I spent most of my time trying to relax in the Recliner Lounge, when I wasn’t taking photographs. Much of the trip was during dark hours, which was somewhat of a disappointment. I arrived at my campground after midnight.