Sunday, June 18, 2017

Gold and More Gold

Hope, Alaska
Alaska Dacha

Today we drove from Kenai to Hope which is still in the Kenai Pennisula.  The only problem with the roads in Alaska is there are no alternate routes.

Dennis and Carol Hill had suggested we meet in Hope.   We had decided to stay at Alaska Dacha but this morning I noticed Dennis sent out an email that they’d be at Seaview RV park.  We decided to check out Seaview and then decide where we wanted to stay.  

When we arrived  in Hope we discovered that fishing season opened today.  I didn’t realize Alaska had the population it does because everyone was on the river fishing.  We drove through the tiny Seaview park only to discover that the sites were all reserved.

As we turned around, we saw Dennis and Carol.  We told them it was filled and where we were going.  They decided to go to a different one. 

After we were unhitched we drove back to the Historical Museum in town.  Did I mention that the population of the town is 192 people (I think they counted the dogs too.)  It’s so small that we drove on the dirt Main Street past the museum to get to the RV park.  When we returned to tour the museum we were asked “what happened to the fifth wheels”. People here notice everyone and everything that happens.  We were also asked about the orange chickens.

The museum was quite a surprise and had a lot more than you’d expect in a town this tiny.  The lady inside explained a lot to us including the big earthquake and how lucky the people in town were with the tsunami.

Next door to the museum was a tent with a sign that said gold panning.  “Gold Rush Peck” is a miner who owns a gold mine near Bear Creek and has been featured on the Travel Channel.  He was in Vietnam and suffers from the effects of agent orange.  

At first I though he had a stroke because he used a walker and had a speech problem.  You pay $20 for a big cup of dirt to pan.  They have the pans and show you how to get to the gold.  

There were flecks of gold in every pan.  I wouldn’t have known how to pan,  I thought you scooped up some dirt and shook it all out.  There’s a technique that you do.  Bill and Harry both walked away with a small vial of gold.  I don’t think it will finance the trip, but they had fun and learned a lot.  Now maybe they will get the metal detectors out. 

This town is so small, I can’t believe an ice cream truck could make enough to pay for the gasoline.  I could hear the music long before I saw it.  It drove one way on Main Street and turned around and came back the other way.

As we were leaving I said I saw Sue go past us.  Harry can make a U turn anywhere and he proved it again.  She was just entering Porcupine and we followed her through the park.  Harry started flashing his lights and she eventually saw us and followed us back to the RV park where we are staying.

After she left we all got together to discuss our plans.  We went back over the same roads we’ve been on to get to Hope.  No matter which way we head, we’ll be over the same roads again. 

It’s a shame Dennis and Carol went on to another campground.  We still had some Moose is Loose pastries with us.  We’ll have to make the sacrifice to eat them tonight so they don’t get stale. 

We’ve still got a long list of things to see and do.  Another couple who were gold panning today were from New Mexico.  They said they visited Alaska and then moved up here.  They told us about another place in Eagle River that we need to visit.  I said wasn’t that the place where some people got attacked by a bear a few days ago.  Very nonchalantly they said, “yes, that’s the place.”

I had some good photos but the internet is so slow I don't have the patience to wait that long.  

Turtle Safely..........

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