Traffic for 2006 June 4 (entry 3)

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[Comments] (3) Next Stop, Juneau: This morning we boarded a helicopter bright and early at 9 am to fly over the Mendenhall Glacier. It was my first trip in a helicopter. I'll take a helicopter ride over an airplane any day. The ride seems so smooth and natural. The pilot played Enya music and LoTR music on our journey, and I felt like I was flying to light a beacon in RoTK. From above the glacier we could see large crevasses and large pools of Windex-blue water. The water is so blue because the ice is so condensed that all colors enter the glacier but only blue can get out, as it has the shortest wavelength of all of the colors. We could also see footprints in the snow on the tops of the mountains, which I would assume were made by mountain goats.

Landing on the glacier, our next leg of the journey was made by dog sled. These huskies were the most friendly dogs I've met. They were friendly, but not overly so. They didn't really jump all over me like some dogs, but just let you pet them. We got to take turns driving the dogsled. The huskies don't like it when we would stop for pictures. They really live to pull dogsleds. They nearly lifted me off the brake a number of times. Talk about service! At the end of the journey we got to see the husky puppies! Our puppy liked chewing on Susie's shirt. I've decided it's because she spills all over herself and the puppy was well aware.

Even though I was on a glacier, we only wore a light jacket and, of course, sunglasses. We also saw some small avalanches happen. The trip home was sad, as we didn't want to leave. But the next leg of our journey took us on the Mt. Robert's Tramway to the top of, you guessed it, Mt. Roberts. Here was got a great view of the city, and went on some limited hiking trips. The hiking was limited because the snow on the mountain was melting and the trails were all quite muddy. But we did manage to see a marmot up there. They also have a bald eagle up there held in captivity due to an injury. Although it's not the same as seeing them in the wild, you could really see how majestic this bird is. I was told that Ben Franklin hated bald eagles and wanted the National Bird to be the turkey. I'm glad he didn't get his way. Sorry, Ben.

Today it hit 70 F, and we were sweating in our layers upon layers of clothing. Still no rain; not even a raincloud! The trip just kept getting better and better!


Posted by Jill at Sun Jun 04 2006 21:26

"And here is our national bird...the turkey! We eat him once a year to give thanks for our country."

Posted by Alyson at Mon Jun 05 2006 05:27

What a fabulous trip. Thanks for writing so much about it.

Posted by Kristen at Mon Jun 05 2006 13:34

In Eagle River where we lived, going into town there is a small river where bald eagles would swoop and fly around. That is why it is called Eagle River. When I first saw the eagles though, I thought that they would be bigger.
Your trip is making me miss it there.

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