Note: I'm actually in Vegas, being a few days behind schedule. A more up-to-date update will follow in a day or two.
Day 19: July 9, Anchorage to Tok, Alaska. We stop at some outfitter place that supposedly has hiking trails with great views of glaciers. When we get there, it turns out that there are no trails, but instead (and to our utmost delight) there's a mischevious black wolf who roams the wilderness, and devours golden retrievers. Justin fears for his life, but we decide to go for a little bushwhack anyway. We stop after a mile or
so when we encounter a large stream that neither of us wants to cross.
Fortunately, we don't see the wolf. After the hike, we get back on the highway and saw some amazing glaciers and icefields.
Day 20: July 10, Tok to Whitehorse, Yukon. Today we drive along the "Top of the World Highway" to Dawson City, a gold rush town in the north
er Yukon. The Top of the World Highway is appropriately named... it winds and twists atop tundra-covered ridges, with breathtaking 360 degree views of subarctic wilderness. Before we get to Dawson city, we have
to cross the Yukon river... and there's no bridge. Justin and I decide
to take the ferry, in lieu of caulking the Subaru and floating it across
the river. We lose 0 oxen in the process. Dawson City is a pretty cool (albeit touristy) town.
Day 21: July 11, Whitehorse to Meziadin Lake, British Columbia. We drive south through British Columbia along the Cassiar Highway. The highway is gorgeous! It snakes through the lush valley floor, with views
of glaciers and huge snowy mountains on both sides. For the first time
in over a week, the sun sets far enough below the horizon for it to get dark. Thus ends, literally, the "longest day of my life"... about 2000
hours of continuous daylight.
Day 22: July 12, Lake Meziadin to Prince George, British Columbia. We
stop at a campsite that is hosting a huge Harley rally. There are approximately 90 bikers congregated under a tent, listening to rock and roll and getting hammered. The woman in the tent site next to us, who is
also a biker, comes over to our site to say hello. Her breath reeks of alcohol, she is 53 years old, and she is standing a couple of inches
away from my face, being very friendly. She puts her arm around me. Ruh roh. I get a tad weirded out and think she's hitting on me. But I
quickly dismiss this hypothesis when she asks me if I'm 15 years old. (FIFTEEN!!). Hah! She guesses Justin to be 18.
Day 23: July 13, Prince George to Vancouver/Abbotsford (props to Error404 for putting us up for the night!). Back in civilization, finally! Vancouver has the cleanest downtown of any large city I've ever
been to. And it's got a great nightlife, too. We get there on a Sunday night, and see tons of people out on the streets... hitting up the numerous bars, coffee shops, and cafes. Justin and I buy cuban cigars, and smoke them at a classy bar while sipping scotch and cognac, respectively. This is the high life. We end up discussing Canadian politics (which are absurd) with Error404 and his roommate until the wee hours of the morning.
Day 24: July 14, Vancouver to Seattle. We spend the afternoon checking out Vancouver. We eat salmon sushi. Later in the day we drive to Seattle, and stay at the house of Justin's mother's friend's sister's husband.
::grin:: Beautifully situated on a ridge, with clear views of the Seattle skyline, and a hot tub on the roof.
Day 25: July 15, Seattle to Portland. We spend the afternoon in Seattle and check out the EMP ("Experience Music Project"). If you've ever
been to Seattle, you probably know what I'm talking about. Pike Place market is awesome. That evening, we get to a friend's place in Portland. He shows us around town, and takes us to the Portland City Grille, which is an upscale bar on the top floor of a skyscraper.
Day 26: July 16, Portland to Brookings, OR. We drive down the Oregon
coast today, and hit 3 wineries along the way. Fortunately, Justin is driving so I can drink with reckless abandon. Along the Oregon coast, we
stop at the inappropriately named Cape Foulweather. 75 degrees and sunny. Hmm. There are lots of sand dunes in Oregon.
Day 27: July 17, Brookings, OR to San Francisco. We pass through the
redwood forests of northern California, and see several gimmicky places
along the way, such as a "One Log Cabin", and numerous Bigfoot shops.
We hit a couple more wineries in Sonoma, and eventually meet a few friends in Berkeley. Contrary to expectations, there are no protests on campus.
Day 28: July 18, Napa Valley. Mmm, wine country. We spend the entire day cruising from place to place, tasting a bunch of wines. (Tasting notes, such as they are, will be forthcoming eventually)
Day 29: July 19, Sonoma Valley. Mmm, wine country. We spend the entire day cruising from place to place, tasting a bunch of wines. In the afternoon we drive down to San Jose for the wedding of Justin's first-cousin-once-removed. (Don't worry, I don't even know what that means).
Day 30: July 20, San Jose (or) San Francisco. This is the first day of the trip that Justin and I spend apart from one another. He went to a post-wedding picnic at a relative's house, while I checked out San Francisco in the company of a lady friend who turned out not to know her way around San Francisco very well (her excuse is that she lives way out in the eastern suburbs). Sadly, I blow an opportunity to meet Ouroboros and other members of NoCal by writing down a cell phone number incorrectly. Bummer. All in all, though, I had a thoroughly pleasant ramble in good company, and that's all I could really ask for.
Day 31: July 21, San Jose to Santa Barbara. We spend the morning and afternoon driving down the central California coast. It turns out that the most beautiful section of the coast (Big Sur), is composed entirely of fog. So much for our timing. We make it to Andy's house, get fed, and get rest.
Other miscellaneous highlights:
* Learning a biker handshake.
* Chicken, Alaska. Year-round population, 17. More "I got laid in Chicken, Alaska" merchandise than you can shake a stick at.
* Vancouver "ghetto slice" pizza. Jumbo slices of pizza, which cost 93 cents, can be purchased just about anywhere.
Other miscellaneous lowlights:
* I pull a Hoffman, leaving Justin's disc (and mynalgene) on the top of the roof of the car right before driving off. Both items are lost.
* Non-alcoholic beer. Says I, "You might think it would be better than water... but this is in fact not the case". Justin mocks me for drinking non-alcoholic beer, but not for being the designated driver.
* A bottle of beer exploded in my suitcase, staining my clothes and covering everything with glass.
* I blow another opportunity to meet a noder (this time it's panamaus whom I fail to contact)
As always, get me your infos and ideas about what to do next! Especially in Vegas and New Orleans!