Alaska, Washington and Oregon
Wednesday, Sept 16th

View from our Cottage
We woke early, and built another fire while we gathered our stuff together. Soon, we checked out and headed back north. I watched much more closely for creatures on the hills, since this was our last day in Alaska. As we rejoined the main north road, a couple was stopped at the edge of the road. "See any critters," I asked them. "Moose," they responded, so we stopped and they left. We wandered the side of the road, looking intently to the right. Bob called out, "Moose!" "Where?" I responded. "In front of you!" he said. I stared harder. "Front!!" he repeated, and I turned to look in the road. There, wandering right in front of us across the road, was a mother and child moose. They ambled across, getting head-deep in some bushes. That makes 7!

We continued north, now scanning for bear. There were many false alarms with bear-trees and bear-bushes. I concentrated near rivers, figuring they liked fish. One textured hill had a dark grey cleft in it, where a river ran down it. Along one bank was a dark black blob! "Bear!" I cried out, and we stopped and grabbed the binoculars. Sure enough, it was a large black bear, playing in the river.

We went back around the loop, stopping again at Portage Glacier for another look at it. Even the mountains on the sides of the road had glaciers inching down them. It was of course again low tide, so no ocean critters were to be seen. We continued back on to Anchorage.

Glacier Pond
The flight south was far more interesting than the dark, cloudy one coming up. Alaska and Canada stretched on with huge mountains and fjords along the ocean. The things we learned about glaciers and ice fields helped us find many of them from above. We passed small boat harbors and many fishing vessels. The mountains and glaciers eased into smaller hills. We passed Vancouver, then came towards Seattle - HUGE. Tons of streets and buildings, the space needle, with Mt Rainier looming in the background. We landed and got our car.

Puget View B&B
After arriving in Washington, we drove down a 5 lane each way highway, amazingly huge compared to the one lane "highways" and dirt roads in Alaska. Seattle merged into Tacoma, then into Olympia. It was one huge city. We stopped at our quite lovely Puget View B&B, right at the bottom of Puget Sound with our own cottage with 3 rooms. Then we continued along south, where the highway dropped to only 2 lanes each way, and crossed into Portland, Oregon. What a mess of malls! We had finished Starship Troopers by now and were listening to the Irish history story, 1916. We passed Mt Saint Helens in the dark, then came back up. Pass a possum, into bed.

Thursday in Washington
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