Sunday, March 19, 2017

Talkeetna

mountain view room
alaska lodging stone fireplace
mount foraker hunter denali views
talkeetna lodge alaska range view


 LODGING

We stayed at the Talkeetna Alaskan Lodge. We booked a mountain view room which meant amazing views of the Alaska Range including Mount Foraker, Denali, and Moose's Tooth. There's a large room in the east wing where you can either sit and enjoy the view or play board games or put together puzzles (provided) on the scattered low tables. This was our childrens' favorite part!


alaska
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alaska xy lakes groomed trail
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xy lakes groomed trail alaska
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talkeetna xy lakes
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ACTIVITIES

Day one we drove the short distance into Talkeetna (the lodge also has a free shuttle back and forth) to walk around town. There were some gift shops open and we did a little souvenir shopping for friends Outside. The Heritage of Alaska Gift Shop has a small, wood-carved downtown Talkeetna scene which is a fun thing to check out. We also walked to the end of the street to look at views of Denali from the currently frozen over Susitna River.

Day two we drove the opposite direction to Talkeetna Lakes Park for some cross-country skiing. There's a day use fee parking lot (the Comsat trailhead) where we started out from. There's a map of the groomed trails at the trailhead (or you can see one here), we started on the Mink trail but found our way to Talkeetna Lake where we skied on a groomed trail over the ice. There was some bonus views of Denali peeking over the trees from there too.



 FOOD

There were two places we ate at which we LOVED. First was Twister Creek for dinner, which is Denali Brewing Company's brewpub. The atmosphere was great, very "old Alaska" and the food was yummy, too. The girls and I shared a pitcher of their root beer while Andrew tried some of the beers.

We stopped at the Flying Squirrel Bakery - Cafe after skiing for some drinks and a snack. We were so excited to see that they had several pastries which were gluten and dairy free, and more importantly they tasted GREAT. They also had vegan options for those with other dietary restrictions. I had the rhubarb ade which I highly recommend and the girls had dairy-free steamers which came in mugs that made them feel very fancy. Next time we're in Talkeetna we're going back to try their pizza, they have a wood-fired pizza oven and it smelled like heaven in there.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Girdwood Day Trip



WHERE

Girdwood, Alaska

WHAT WE DID

Stopped in at Alyeska Resort
Cross-country skied around Moose Meadows
Shopped for art at the Girdwood Art Co-op

WHERE WE ATE

Jack Sprat 




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Sunday, February 26, 2017

Fur Rondy Carnival





WHERE

Fur Rendezvous Carnival in Downtown Anchorage, Alaska

WHAT WE DID

Went on rides and ate a lot of yummy food at the food carts set up around that area. It's not a huge carnival but it has rides for kids of all ages and we've always found the people running the rides to very nice and helpful.


Saturday, February 25, 2017

Fur Rondy Sled Dog Races






dog sled racing


WHERE

Downtown Anchorage Alaska

WHEN

It's a 10-day event culminating in the Iditarod Ceremonial start, so usually end of February through the beginning of March.

There's also a lot of Fur Rondy activities going on so there's no shortage of things to do. Food carts, craft booths, the carnival, and other activities. Click here for more information and a schedule.

One of these years we'll make it to the Ceremonial Start too. . .We have been to the official start in Willow, this year it will be held in Fairbanks. It is so much fun I hope if you're in the area you can attend!


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Friday, February 24, 2017

Alaska Public Lands Information Center Junior Rangers



This post's purpose is to let you know about a fun, kid-friendly resource and as a reminder to myself to take advantage of it as well. The Alaska Public Lands Information Center in Anchorage is located at 4th and F downtown. It is a federal building so there will be a security check at the door.

The girls got sworn in as junior rangers after completing a set of activities. The ceremony was so great and they were presented with certificates and badges which were, like, legit. I want one. :)

The center has so many fun things and great resources that it would be too much to list out! I'm really happy we came across it during Fur Rondy (they were passing out flyers) and maybe I can expose it to others as well.

For fun kids activities online click here.
For more information on childrens activities in Anchorage click here.

To explore more click here (trip planning, interactive maps, info on cultural exhibits, movie times, and so much more).

Monday, February 20, 2017

Rodak Trail Eagle River Nature Center






The Eagle River Nature Center is a favorite of ours. So much scenery! There's a lot of trails to choose from the 5/8 mile Rodak to the 21 mile Crow Pass. When we just need to get the kids out of the house   it's usually Rodak with a stop by the hollow tree. The fairly short trail has two viewing decks. You'll see a lot of Instagrammers take photos from these spots, with some inferring that they're deep in Alaska backcountry (one popular 'grammer even brought their camp stove and enamel mugs to set up a camping scene just feet from one of the decks. I'm glad their followers liked it but it made me LOL). Anyways don't be fooled! I tell everyone that they should absolutely make a little time to go to the Nature Center - it's one of the fastest ways for us to immerse ourselves in Alaska without having to load up a pack (if you don't want). 

Friday, February 3, 2017

Reflections Lake



 The winter in town is starting to reach the ugly, crusty, dirty, slushy point so it was a real treat to go out to Reflections Lake today and find it still a winter wonderland. The main trail to the lake has been plowed which would be stroller-friendly but the rest of the trail is single track and unevenly compacted snow. We got around fine without grippers but it's the time of year where you might want them anyway.

For more of our trips to Reflections Lake click here.