I love to drive. Any place I can go by auto is a great vacation to me! There are so many places throughout Alaska, Canada and the lower 48 states that can be explored and I do my best to get out on road trips whenever I can. My longest road trip stretched for about 10,000 miles - from my home in Alaska down to Wisconsin and then Missouri for a dog show, returning to Alaska three weeks after I left. I had three dogs with me. All of my dogs learn from a young age to travel well. The van is their "other home".
I've driven the Alcan highway through Canada numerous times. My first trip alone (1985) involved putting my horse in a rack in the back of my pick-up (literally!) and driving to Washington. Keep in mind that I grew up in a very small area and basically had no experience with freeways. The Seattle area was a shock. It was definitely a steep and sudden learning curve! But ever since then I've been drawn to the road and especially to the wilderness areas of Alaska, Yukon Territory and British Columbia. There's just something about the long stretches of quiet roadway that I love. And you never know what kind of wildlife you'll come across!
A vivid memory of that first trip was an early morning happening. I was on a long stretch of straight highway and could see something in the road fairly far away. As I got closer, I realized that it was a black bear, sitting in the roadway. I eased to a stop and sat there in the pick-up, wondering what to do. The bear looked at me and I looked at him, and in some peaceful way it felt normal. But then I felt my horse shifting uncomfortably in the back of the truck and realized that the horse might not find it so normal. I honked my horn and the bear ambled off the road.
Since then, I've seen bears numerous times on my trips through Alaska and Canada. Not just black bears too - coming around a corner of a mountain one day, a brown sow and two cubs loped up the hillside. Unfortunately they were faster than my camera. But I've always seen wildlife - moose, caribou, coyotes, bears, mountain sheep, stone sheep, mountain goats, fox, porcupine and a myriad of birds including eagles and owls.
I'd like to share with you some of my more recent trips. It's easier to show them now that I have a digital camera! You'll see some gorgeous scenery and share the stories of my "adventures".