Don’t know from where to start, how to put this is across. It’s tough, to put it in words. As Alaska is different, we went to explore, wander, get lost and have some half tea there if possible. In the end it changed us. Totally.
It all started with a friend’s tweet on Twitter (Thanks Navdha), where she wrote about hiking Alaska mountains. For me, it was a sudden outburst, realized Alaska is part of USA, it’s a state of USA. And with my current visa, I can visit it. Quick Google, it was just 4 hours non-stop from my place. HOLY SHIT. Quick call to my bestie on this, rather than laughing on the idea of Alaska, he agreed.
With that, we kickstarted our Alaskan stint. The first question came, how many days ? As it was Alaska. We wanted to get more out of it, including the 3 days of a long weekend, we took a day off from work and made it for 4 days. Midnight flights made it 6 days away from the comfort our cozy bed, food and Bay Area. Will it be worth it ? Screw it.
Next question, what all places to visit ? where to touchdown first ? from where to catch the return flight. Found out, Alaska has two major cities, with proper airports, those are Fairbanks and Anchorage. In that Anchorage being the biggest city. We zero-ed on Anchorage after looking it’s downtown images, it was looking like this, few buildings standing tall, with a background of snowed mountains, front of it was a water body. Hell yeah.
What next ? What all to do, cover, try in 4 days ? We were divided from where to start and end again, even we had a big argument, after that we were ready to ditch plans and stay at home, then over some tea, we were back to the plan. We finally laid out the plan, in a tissue paper. Yeah. A detailed plan below.
TLSP was Anchorage to Seward on Day 1. Anchorage to Whittier island on Day 2. Denali State Park on Day 3. Back to Anchorage on Day 4 for return flight via Talkeetna.
It covered everything, Fjord’s, Glaciers, Cruise, Mountains, Wildlife and few unknown parameters which we got to do/see without asking.
We were afraid of weather out there, as Alaska was mystery, unexplored territory, we were comfortable with rain, sun, but wasn’t sure of Snow and getting stranded in middle of nowhere. We took the leap of faith, we had each other, said “fuck it” to ourselve and we went ahead with ticket bookings. Work wise, it was perfect timing for us, my project went into production, Kaushik was also in same position and Kamal was ready to manage himself if work comes.
It was just perfect timing in all fronts, as if we meant to do it. And we took our chance.
Fast forward on travelling day, finished work, packed our trolleys and bags, with lot of snacks, a rice cooker, maggi, some rice, puliogare masala, warm clothes, shoes, glasses. Armed with gadgets as a GoPro silver, iPhones, a DSLR without a tripod and 3 Retina Display 15” MacBook Pro’s in case work shows up. Fingers crossed.
Raided a taxi, hit the road for airport, made it on time, airport check-in (literally and social media wise), ate some snacks, emptied some coffee and got our flight to Seattle. It was SFO -> Seattle -> Anchorage. Touch down Anchorage at 2 am.
En-route to Seattle, as we had got the left side window seats, we witnessed a great sunset, the sun amidst the clouds was gleaming like anything. He was white, golden and pink. Yeah, Pink. The view was so good, we fell silent. Just shaant.
Touch down at Anchorage, came out of airport in a rental call, we got a Dodge Journey, a SUV. Out of airport by 3 am, OMG, there is still sunlight and visibility. Reached our lodge, checked in, freshen up, India calls, settled in bed. Even though amidst the excitement, nervousness, went to sleep not sure what’s gonna be next day.
We touched Alaska. Yay…