Moose Nose Stew.

Yes. Moose nose stew. Why would you waste the nose? I am eating many things that I have never imagined before. I am not a fan of anything that comes from water, so I am so excited to be eating more land animals. Friends came by with caribou and moose meat. It is delicious. Caribou sausage in on the menu for dinner tonight. However, this story happened a couple of weeks ago. Someone came to work with moose nose stew. They offered to let me try it. If you eat something different and don’t post it online, did it really happen?

Screen Shot 2016-10-31 at 4.14.29 PM.pngSqueeze your earlobe. It was a little softer than that. And chewy. Marinated in moose snot was the description that I was told after I ate it. 5/10 I would eat it again. Would you try it?

House Swaps.

It has been a busy end of the summer. I love the fall for fishing though. This monster trout was gorging on salmon flesh. Quite a memorable fish for me.

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Small crowd at Bird Creek in August.screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-12-52-14-pmAmanda completed her first marathon.screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-12-52-31-pmWe still had some nice weather along the coast.

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We moved out of our house that often had moose in the front yard.screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-12-54-10-pmBut we bought this house and put a fish in the front yard. screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-12-54-21-pm

Mostly, we bought it so the dogs would have a big back yard.screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-12-54-34-pmThe trails nearby also are fantastic.

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I love fall fishing. screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-12-55-26-pm

Moose and Motorcycles.

As I was coming home from work one recent morning, a moose crossed the road in front of me. Luckily, I had plenty of time to stop. Then the moose stopped as well. He stood in the middle of the road and I stopped. Idling the bike, I lowered my feet unsure of what to do. If he charged, could I turn around fast enough and gun it? Probably not. Would we play chicken and I try to skirt around to the other lane? Doubtful. We looked at each other for a while. I think that he realized that I wasn’t too much of a threat. He walked down the road keeping a wary eye on me.Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 2.17.12 AM.pngHe was on the same side of the road as I was, so I was going to have to drive on the opposite side of the road to give him plenty of space. A couple of cars came by. Some stopped to make sure that he wouldn’t charge them as well. Some zoomed by either not noticing or not caring. I slowly started approaching him from behind, but got into the other lane (hoping there was no oncoming traffic) and he stopped to watch as I passed him nervously.

These giant animals are still amazing to me. To the locals, they are like dairy cows in Wisconsin. Big, never trusted, and seen everywhere. Locals don’t take pictures of moose. I still do. I got home and took the dogs on a short walk. A few minutes later, this brute come clomping down the road just like he was when I passed him. He still didn’t seem to have a care in the world. He is a true local.Screen Shot 2016-04-20 at 2.18.08 AM.png

Just another day.

If you want to see wildlife in Alaska, you can head into the bush and camp for a week stalking the animals or just sitting quietly. Or you can look for someone else pulled over on the highway. That is what we did. 
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We were just driving down the highway enjoying the view when we saw a bunch of people with big camera lenses looking up. Like good cheechakos, we pulled over to see what was going on. It was a bit too late in the day for my little camera to get a good picture of him, but it was cool to see.

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Lately, this big bull moose has been hanging out in our yard. He ate our rhubarb and wakes us up at night. Well, he wakes the dogs up and they wake us up. It is hard to explain how big they really are. they blend in very well and sometimes we walk right past them without noticing the first time.Screen Shot 2015-10-29 at 5.09.19 PM

That is the latest news from the cabin in Anchorage. Fall is incredible here. As my fishing season winds down, we are starting to hope for snow so we can put our skis to good use. Until then, I will be looking around for large animals.Screen Shot 2015-10-29 at 5.09.35 PM

Denali National Park.

We headed into Denali National Park with Amanda’s parents while they were visiting. On our way, we stopped in the town village of Talkeetna. It is a fantastic place to stop. They have every adventure necessary. Want to go fishing, someone there can arrange that. Too easy? Take a helicopter tour of Denali, they do that here as well. We just stopped at a cool little coffee shop.Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.00.39 AMWe were at the tail end of the season, so some things were closed, and the traffic was pretty minimal. The weather was not too bad, but with lots of clouds, actually seeing the mountain did not seem like a realistic thing that was going to occur. While that is always a goal of people that are visiting the area, we have been lucky to see it on clear days while fishing nearby. There is still so much to see and do that the actual mountain might be better off imagined. Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.00.27 AMWe boarded our bus early the next day and settled in for what would be an 11 hour bus tour. If you travel into the park in your own car, you can only drive in the first 15 miles. The buses were great. We didn’t have to drive, we could eat, and the bus driver was knowledgeable and entertaining. This is a great way to see the park and the inhabitants.Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.13.46 AMThe weather that we had experienced in Talkeetna was worse/better/bigger/different the next day. Everything is larger and more extreme in Alaska. The weather is no exception. Where there was rain the day before it was heavily snowing on us in the park. It was very beautiful to see a lot of the area covered in snow. The biggest concern was that the roads would be impossible to use in some spots. We were going on the last day of the season.

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We got to Savage River and were told that it might be the end of the line for us. We were 15 miles into an 85 mile trip. We waited here, saw a few bears, made a snowman, and were told to get back on the bus, we were continuing forward.Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.01.30 AMThe wildlife is used to the buses. They know that the buses are not a threat. We were able to see animals acting very naturally.

Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.28.56 AM Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.28.24 AMIt was the people that were funny to watch. As soon as someone spotted an animal, the bus would stop and try to get us into a good viewing position. Everyone ran to the side where the animal would be. The sound of fake shutters clicking was entertaining and the animals didn’t seem to mind. Mostly everyone was respectful and kept their arms and hands inside. Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.27.22 AMEvery stop was amazing. The roads were cleared and we were told that we would make it all the way to the Wonder Lake Campground. Every time we got out of the bus, we were blown away. Mostly with the views, but sometimes by the wind.Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.27.02 AMScreen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.38.45 AMScreen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.39.07 AMThat was our visit to Denali National Park. It was outstanding and everyone visiting Alaska should try to get out there to experience it. Thanks for reading.

Second week in Anchorage.

One mid term down, one fish exam and a final to go. I still need to learn how to get into my survival suit. I get to practice on Tuesday. In the very little amount of free time that I have I found some time to pull in a few Pink Salmon.

I almost hit this moose while fishing. I walked around the corner and she was eating. When she saw me, she walked to the middle of the creek, peed, and left. I guess seeing me wasn’t as exciting for her.

Our neighbor has lots of raspberries. I agreed to water his tomato plants while he is away in exchange for a few berries.