15 miles (plus 15 on the ferry)
$0: Skagway roadside
A lot of today was spent looking at this:
Winds whipping around the trailer. One side pelted with rain, and the other dry.
I spent the day doing final shopping, and using library WiFi before my appointment with the ferry Columbia at 3:45. At the ferry terminal, I learned that she would be late – a 9:45pm departure.
While I was waiting, I finally saw a bald eagle close up.
I just love dioramas.
At last, she arrived.
I turned off the propane, and was ushered on board through a door in the side. It was low tide, so the ramp was pretty steep.
I was parked in pretty tight. Right next to a trailer of sled dogs.
Don’t worry Puddin – you’ll be there soon.
It got dark soon after I boarded, and I was surprised at how uneasy plowing the dark waters in the extreme wind made me feel. I had to hold onto the railing to not be blown over. Maybe that’s why I was the only one on deck.
The cruise ship rounding the bend ahead of looked eerie in the fog, with just their lights showing.
Could there be submerged icebergs this far south? That water looked very cold. I don’t want to have to throw my jewels off the side of this ship. Please don’t make me.
At last, we pulled up to Skagway. The captain carefully maneuvered the vessel to the dock. It was actually more of a floating barge, and waves crashed over the side in the extreme wind (the next day’s first roundtrip was cancelled due to the winds).
I mounted my 360-cam on the sunroof. Listen for the wind, and watch the waves crashing over the barge on the right side.
So, now I was in Skagway. It’s 11:30 pm. And I have no reservations. My plan was to stay at the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park Campground, nine miles up the road, driving there at sunset. But the wind was howling, it was spritzing rain, and the road turned from pavement to dirt. And got narrower and narrower, with a warning to trailers ands RVs to be extra careful.
It was so late and I didn’t want to disturb the other campers. So a mile short, I pulled off in a wider section of road, set the parking brake, and went to sleep. All I saw was a cliff, rain, fog, and undulating trees around me. I fell right asleep.
When I awoke, my spot only proves that you can throw a dart any on an Alaskan map and find amazing vistas.
This morning, I drove the last mile or two, and found a nice spot at the campground.