You already know that I can sink my teeth into an "anywhere-anytime" road trip. This was my second to the Copper River Delta area...for work, that is. (Glennallen, Tazlina,Tonsina, Gakona, Gulkana, Slana, Chistochina, Chitina...let's see, what am I forgetting? Copper Center, Valdez, Wrangell-St. Elias, Kenny Lake.)
When I first moved to Alaska, we drove through here to get to Anchorage, so I've seen this place in the summer, early winter and during April which could have been spring or it could have been left-over winter. Here are some pictures of how it looked to me this time:
I almost got out of my car and climbed up on that big blue bike! Somewhere around Sutton/Chickaloon...not so far from Ancorage that I couldn't easily go back on my own time to get up close and more personal with places like the Jonesville Cafe, Pinnacle Mtn. RV park, or the King Mountain Chickaloon General Store.
In the village of Copper Center, further up north, I didn't notice these little grave plots the last time I was here. Or I didn't notice their colors. When I was here last, there was a new blanket of snow on everything. That's what I mostly noticed my first winter in Alaska.
Someone told me that the little houses over the graves is a Russian tradition. I also learned a bit about Athabascan Indian funeral potlatches in this area. Mostly how expensive they are.
For the first few days of this trip, I stayed at the (new, which was NOT new) Caribou Hotel.
There were quite a few military convoys coming through the area and in case you can't tell, let me point out that the figures on the run are females heading into the gas station restrooms. The men were slower to get out of the vehicles.
A woman I visited was just finishing up a couple of outfits for some young women to wear to their graduation this year. It was from this woman I first heard the term "brain tanned leather." I also bought a little knitted baby cap and some socks from her. I wanted to buy something she had made, but she sort of pushed the ones her daughter made on me. She was more excited to help her daughter, who wasn't even there, and that really softened my heart, as if it weren't already pretty mushy on this trip.
Sometimes I think I think too much and I talk too much and try to explain too much. So, let's just let the rest of the pictures tell you their own stories, (except for a couple of identifying captions.)