With Friends Like This

When friends come to visit, I like to take them to do things. Like see dead whales.20171029_135446.jpgOr go up hills.IMG_3862.jpgCarve pumpkins.IMG_3867.jpgMake them look at tall things.20171103_144738.jpgMake them look at pretty things.IMG_3915.jpgMake them go up more hills.IMG_3914.jpgMake them take selfies with me.20171102_152319.jpgMake them like it here.IMG_3916.jpgI showed them some glaciers and told them that the water was cold.20171101_165656.jpgI guess that some people need to figure things out for themselves.20171101_165751.jpg

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Alaskan Steelhead

I just can’t seem to help myself. October rolls around and the thought of standing in cold water not catching anything gets very appealing. The previous year was very good to me. Catching 3 Steelhead on my first Alaskan outing made me feel like a pro. This year, the rivers was blown out.IMG_3755.jpgI was still able to manage to land one which required being out at the river before everyone else. It was cold and as the water level dropped, my expectations rose. The fishing was probably great the day after we left.IMG_3786.jpgThe drive home was beautiful. We stopped at Tern Lake to watch the swans. IMG_3775.jpgA couple of weeks later, I thought that the water level had dropped enough to make the fishing a little better. I knew that it would be cold, so I rented a hotel room instead of camping. I feel like I am getting older smarter.

The day started with a few feet of ice on the bank. It was tough to release fish without taking them out of the water. This Dolly Varden looks small compared to the giant bird prints in the ice. IMG_3822.jpgI realized that the old get up early trick might be in order. A few weeks ago there would be 6 people in the popular spots when the sun rose. This time I was the only one there. I did see one other person fishing, but he was walking over to the restaurant to get breakfast as I was heading to the river. It paid off.IMG_3834.jpgOne fish per day turned out to be the most I could get. It was more than I could ask for. I will be back next October to do it again.IMG_3829.jpg

Wine in Wisconsin?

When you are in Wisconsin, there seems to be a bit of drinking going on. When you are on vacation, there seems to be a bit of drinking going on. When you combine the two, it gets fun. We stopped at Wollersheim Winery and Distillery for a tasting and tour. It was fantastic. The grounds were beautiful.screen-shot-2016-09-14-at-6-23-01-pmThe history of the place was fascinating to me. From their website, “In the 1840s, the Hungarian nobleman Agoston Haraszthy discovered the sloped land where the winery sits today, and planted it with grapevines. During his short time in Wisconsin, Haraszthy also incorporated the state’s first town, Sauk City.” What a busy guy. I also like where his head was. He eventually gave up Wisconsin for a different wine growing area, California. Turns out, it was a good move.

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We made it out of the winery, even if we wanted to stay, and found our way (barely) to a farm. It was a beautiful space with chickens, a cat, a dog, some kind of farmers, and an old farmhouse. It was a great way to be introduced to the next part of our adventure, the Wisconsin Dells.

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Headed North to Door County.

“Door County” is mentioned a lot when you are in the Midwest. We left Milwaukee and headed north. We were going to the famous Door County. Door County is known for its camping, beaches, and cherries. Also, true to midwest style, everyone is very friendly there.

The blue skies were tremendous as we sat in the air conditioned, cruise controlled truck loaded with bikes and luggage. The countryside was better than I expected. Corn fields and dairy farms were everywhere.

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We rode bikes into and through Peninsula State Park. Peninsula State Park has 460 campsites, an 18 hole golf course, a theater in the summer, big sandy beaches, and miles of bike trails.Screen Shot 2016-08-25 at 7.15.46 AMNicolet Beach as a storm rolled in.Screen Shot 2016-08-25 at 7.14.11 AMWe made it up to Gill’s Rock in the very far north of Door Peninsula. The weather continued to be perfect as we mingled with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins while eating, drinking, and watching the sunset. Screen Shot 2016-08-25 at 7.14.48 AM

Quick Trip to Kona.

We took a quick 4 day trip to Kona to visit my dad. Day one was mostly travel, but we got a beautiful sunset even from the plane. The moon could even be seen in the top left corner. We took this to be a good sign for the upcoming trip.Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.28.24 AM.pngAs soon as we arrived, we had to play with the dogs. My dad has the kind of relationship with his dogs like we have with ours.Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.30.32 AM.png

The  weather may have been a little wet, but the temperature was a bit higher than it was in Anchorage. The trip also included a lot of fruit. Papayas from the yard or lilikoi mimosas, fruit was a major part!Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.30.41 AM.pngScreen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.32.13 AM.png

We threw in a quick stop at End of the World for some cliff jumping.Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.32.58 AMScreen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.33.08 AM

What is a trip to Kona without Scandinavian shave ice? Ice cream, yes, azuki, no thanks.Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.34.17 AM.pngStandard Kua Bay Instagram picture? No problem:Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.35.31 AM.png

More fruit please. Sure let’s just grab mangoes from the yard. Complete with post beach sunburn.

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One day we headed to Kamuela on the way to Waipio. We needed roping and history lessons.Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.37.02 AM.pngScreen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.37.54 AM.pngScreen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.38.29 AM.pngNot enough beach time? Thinking that Alaska is chilly? Might as well get to Hapuna while it isn’t raining!Screen Shot 2016-05-26 at 3.39.15 AM.pngThe last day, Dad dropped us off at the airport and we had another killer sunset all the way home.

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A hui hou.