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  1. #51
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Vanity Fair
    Posts
    2,687
    Continuing with the weekend warriors go hiking theme:

    Cruisy day hike somewhere above chena hotsprings:


    In late July, A. wanted to hike Kesugi ridge and V. joined. Both are from Bavaria, like me. I remain unconvinced that there are people from Alaska in Alaska. We got a late start in Fairbanks, drove the drive, hiked up to where the views get good that evening and camped, then hiked out to Ermine Hill the next day. As a bed time story A. told us about that time she matched with a guy on tinder (she was bored in FBX and looking for people to do outdoorsy things with).The guy was a pilot and suggested they fly somewhere for a date. She figured this sounded good, what could possibly go wrong?

    They flew to abandoned hot springs somewhere in the bush, she got hypothermia (it was winter) but the guy managed to get a fire going and she got better (guy was freaking out because he thought she might freeze), then the weather was bad the next day and they couldn't fly out, then it was good enough to fly but they didn't have enough fuel to get all the way back so had to land at some airfield somewhere, walk 'for hours' to get fuel in nearby settlement, then the weather was bad again, they had to stay in said settlement, weather remained bad, eventually some person from the settlement gave A. a ride back to civilization in a car while tinder guy remained with the plane and waited for good weather.

    Their relationship did not develop further.


    Hiking up to the ridge trail


    Time to look for a camp spot


    Mountain's out.




    Didn't have to look far for that camp spot.


    A's shot, still loving my bugshirt


    AK trail highway


    Snowchicken family


    -----------

    End of July: Another weekend, another long drive - half day - overnight - half day - long drive – trip. Same players as above. In increasing desperation, I brought skis hoping to find a snow patch somewhere.

    Heading up, A's pic


    Not where we are going, A's pic


    Finally leaving behind the ATV trail. Apparently ATV'ing is a popular family activity and they make tiny ATVs for 5 year olds. Lots of toddlers, lots of guns, lots of gasoline. Everyone was very friendly.



    While I hiked for my turns on some snow patches next to the glacier, A and V hiked for some views.


    What I thought was a snow patch was actually a debris covered glacier remnant with a bunch of weird holes. There is ice under this.


    Eventually found a patch without sketchy holes


    Worth a couple more laps




    A's pictures:




    It started raining as we were going to bed. A & V had my fairly rain resistant tent so they could snore together in the larger of our two tents. The smaller one, which I had, was not very rain resistant, although to be fair it was standing in running water by morning because a small spring appeared directly above the tent as the rain went on and I'm not sure you have a right to expect dryness when you put your tent up in a river.





    Getting out of here


    The 'crux'


    brunch


    Apparently this picture shows that the sky in Alaska is different than at home.

    -"How exactly is it different?"
    -"Just different. Like, you know, more three dimensional."

    Ich bitte dich nur, weck mich nicht.

  2. #52
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Vanity Fair
    Posts
    2,687
    And in terms of being a stranger in a strange land, transcripts of my most recent interactions with the local Wells Fargo employees. WF is the only national bank in Fairbanks and also the only bank theoretically capable of dealing with foreign currency, so I have an account there. Checks are archaic and baffling. I have never written one. Why do you still do that??

    Depositing a check:

    Lady at counter: HI!!! WELCOME!!! What can i do for you today???
    Me: Hi. I have this check. Can you .... (trying to think of the word 'deposit') .... put it into my account, please?
    L: SURE! I AM DELIGHTED TO DEPOSIT THIS CHECK FOR YOU! WOW YOU SMELL SO GOOD!
    M: ...oh. Haha. Okay! Thank you! Good bye!

    Filling out forms:

    Lady at counter: HI!!! WELCOME!! HOW CAN I HELP YOU TODAY???
    Me: Hi. I got these forms in the mail. I am not sure what they are for and how to fill them out. Is there someone who can help me with this?
    Lady: SURE! I will get a banker for you!
    ....
    Banker: Uh... Hm. You can just fill out this one.
    Me: Are you sure? It says this is for residents?
    B: Right. Fill out the other one!
    M: Okay. So what is it for?
    B: It's just something we have to get from everyone. It doesn't matter.
    M: ...
    B: So, usually my mom helps me with this but she's not here today. You know how it goes.
    M: Oh. Yeah. Of course. Okay. I think I'll just come back some other time. Thanks.
    B: No problem!! Thanks for stopping by! Have a GREAT day!!

    And then I recently had to look for something in my visa papers and found the list of questions I had to answer for the application.

    Questions I was asked by the government of the United States of America before being granted a visa, excerpt:

    Have you ever been subject of a removal or deportation hearing?
    Have you ever been involved in, or seek to engage in, money laundering?
    Are you a member or representative of a terrorist organization?
    Is your mother in the US?
    Have you ever engaged in the recruitment of child soldiers?
    Have you ever renounced United States citizenship for the purpose of avoiding taxation?
    Have you ever been directly involved in the establishment or enforcement of the population controls forcing a woman to undergo an abortion against her free choice or a man or a woman to undergo sterilization against his or her free will?
    Have you ever been directly involved in the coercive transplantation of human organs or bodily tissue?

    Questions I asked myself, excerpt:

    Are these really all 'No' questions or would they throw in a 'Yes' question just to fuck with people?
    Under what circumstances would a recruiter of child soldiers, enforcer of mandatory sterilization, terrorist, money launderer, admit to being such in this weird form?
    Are all of these offenses equally disqualifying for a visa or is there some kind of scale?
    What does my country ask people who want a visa?
    Ich bitte dich nur, weck mich nicht.

  3. #53
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    in the trench
    Posts
    6,640

    I'm an alien, a legal alien in AK - ongoing

    Where they all a no? Asking for a friend

  4. #54
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Vanity Fair
    Posts
    2,687
    Quote Originally Posted by grinch View Post
    Where they all a no? Asking for a friend
    Not sure they would have let me in if I'd told them about my side hustle where I employ child soldiers for money laundering purposes so yes, no.




    Mid August, my boyfriend visited again and we had a very romantic getaway to the fabled North Slope. We had hoped to hike a few days in the Brooks Range but the weather sucked so we ended up driving all the way to Dead Horse before hanging out on the northern edge of the Brooks Range for a bit and waiting for a break in the rain.

    Dead Horse has the all the charm of a dead horse. I did enjoy meeting a herd of musk ox just outside of 'town' and watching them lumber around in permafrost polygons in front of the weird industrial container skyline of Dead Horse.



    There were a couple of baby musk ox, very lively and cute.



    This seemed to be the boss.


    On the way back south to the mountains.


    We shared the campground with a 70y/o guy from Talkeetna who had driven up there for a long weekend with his 7 huskies in a Mercedes Sprinter. I'm not positive but it seemed liked he was sort of sleeping on the dog cages, which were hanging from the ceiling of the car so the dogs wouldn't get bumped around so much. He had the dogs pull him around on a weird scooter thing and did a few laps on the dirt road by the campground every so often.

    Our setup. Vanlife is so inspiring.



    Did manage a bit of hiking just off the road but weren't really equipped for full on rain action so retreated pretty quickly.







    Made it to the snowline!




    Stumbled into a group of 20 or so ptarmigans









    We were a little bummed about the weather but since I stupidly caught myself a full time job and apparently annual leave and overtime leave are not concepts that have entirely arrived in this country, it was back to the office after this and we couldn't wait it out. What little we saw of the Brooks Range was gorgeous.
    Ich bitte dich nur, weck mich nicht.

  5. #55
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    North Vancouver/Whistler
    Posts
    10,776
    I hope you got out when the tundra turns colours. It is achingly beautiful.

    I use checks for Americans and for goverment. Payment systems in Noram are stone age

  6. #56
    Join Date
    Sep 2001
    Location
    Before
    Posts
    18,811
    +++++++
    Merde De Glace On the Freak When Ski
    >>>200 cm Black Bamboo Sidewalled DPS Lotus 120 : Best Skis Ever <<<

  7. #57
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    cordova,AK
    Posts
    2,469
    If you need convincing there are people from Alaska in Alaska than maybe your next TR should be from the Mecca Bar.
    off your knees Louie

  8. #58
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Posts
    9,892
    Quote Originally Posted by BFD View Post
    If you need convincing there are people from Alaska in Alaska than maybe your next TR should be from the Mecca Bar.
    Haha, ^truth. I was gonna say get off the road system - Ft. Yukon, Tanana, Huslia...

    Great pictures, klar.
    I swear on my glass eye,

  9. #59
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Funland
    Posts
    1,130
    I'm just a beater but this is the best TR on the forum.
    I love you, baby, but the season's over.

  10. #60
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    In the shadow of the wasatch
    Posts
    1,992
    Quote Originally Posted by tBatt View Post
    I'm just a beater but this is the best TR on the forum.
    Here here!

  11. #61
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Ventura Highway in the Sunshine
    Posts
    21,079
    Quote Originally Posted by klar View Post
    What does my country ask people who want a visa?
    I believe they only ask one question. "Do you drink beer with anything in it other then water, hops and malt?"

    If you answer yes to that, even as a citizen you aren't allowed into the country.

    I agree it is a constitutional right for Americans to be assholes...its just too bad that so many take the opportunity...
    iscariot

  12. #62
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    27,938
    Quote Originally Posted by klar View Post
    And then I recently had to look for something in my visa papers and found the list of questions I had to answer for the application.

    Questions I was asked by the government of the United States of America before being granted a visa, excerpt:


    Have you ever been subject of a removal or deportation hearing?
    Have you ever been involved in, or seek to engage in, money laundering?
    Are you a member or representative of a terrorist organization?
    Is your mother in the US?
    Have you ever engaged in the recruitment of child soldiers?
    Have you ever renounced United States citizenship for the purpose of avoiding taxation?
    Have you ever been directly involved in the establishment or enforcement of the population controls forcing a woman to undergo an abortion against her free choice or a man or a woman to undergo sterilization against his or her free will?
    Have you ever been directly involved in the coercive transplantation of human organs or bodily tissue?
    It always made me laugh with those forms that they wanted to know if you were culpable for the holocaust despite having provided absolute proof of being born decades after it having happened.
    Quote Originally Posted by Downbound Train View Post
    And there will come a day when our ancestors look back...........

  13. #63
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    651
    Really inspiring

  14. #64
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    tetons
    Posts
    6,400
    great new pic additions. love the color contrasts and wth is up w/ that antler?!
    skid luxury

  15. #65
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    17,347
    Quote Originally Posted by klar View Post
    Checks are archaic and baffling. I have never written one. Why do you still do that??
    Nobody knows. But people over 70 just can't seem to wrap their heads around the notion that using a card makes more sense.

  16. #66
    OP is living large
    adventures aren’t just in the mountains; making life changes is adventure too

    respect

  17. #67
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    1,052
    wow. wow.

    wow.

  18. #68
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    367
    It takes some commitment to make fondue in the backcountry. Those pans are a bitch to clean melted cheese out of.

  19. #69
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Vanity Fair
    Posts
    2,687
    Quote Originally Posted by PNWbrit View Post
    It always made me laugh with those forms that they wanted to know if you were culpable for the holocaust despite having provided absolute proof of being born decades after it having happened.
    heh. I would not be surprised to learn that a few Germans above a certain age but definitely too young to have been personally culpable answered yes to that anyway. Helmut Kohl's tale of the 'mercy of the late birth' was very controversial with the 'collective guilt' generation.

    Quote Originally Posted by b-bear View Post
    wth is up w/ that antler?!
    hm? Caribou grow new antlers every year. They just leave the old ones lying around wherever in blatant violation of Leave No Trace policy.

    Quote Originally Posted by questionable_character View Post
    adventures aren’t just in the mountains; making life changes is adventure too

    respect
    Ain't that the truth. This whole thing has certainly been a learning experience in more ways than one. Thanks

    Quote Originally Posted by jorion View Post
    It takes some commitment to make fondue in the backcountry. Those pans are a bitch to clean melted cheese out of.
    I raised this concern with him and his response was that he likes the cheese taste and just keeps cooking with the pan without cleaning out the cheese. Apparently it improves the flavor of mountain house and oatmeal alike.


    --------------------------------------

    When Autumn leaves start to fall, I get a runny nose and a never ending cough and start listening to sad music, although I know better. Between mid-september and mid-october, colours have gone from oversaturated to sepia to ‘fuck it’s dark, I hope it snows soon’.

    I was pretty sick for a bit and am still kind of trying to get over my flu, so I haven't been out as much as I'd like.

    Angel Rocks, early September


    Spruce grouse, white mountains


    Drizzly day on Wickersham Dome


    A colleague won a spot in the Denali road lottery and invited me along for the drive, which made for a nice break from honestly kind of mind-numbing routine of workweek and weekend trips. Colleague and husband are falconers. As in, they have a falcon and hunt things with it. We spent the 12~ hours in the car talking about their recent trip to Harry Potter World and about how to best find falcon nests (check rocks for poop) and obtain new falcons for falconing (falconeering?) from those nests by, like, grabbing a falcon (???). I had a very good time.

    Ptarmigan


    Grizz


    Views




    Grizz 2


    Why did the caribou cross the road?


    Because they like the attention of a dozen people with huge cameras.


    This lady was slightly more circumspect.


    Gloom


    Doom


    Wannabe Grizz
    Ich bitte dich nur, weck mich nicht.

  20. #70
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    PNW
    Posts
    4,425
    😁
    PE, Mechanical Engineering

  21. #71
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Hyperspace!
    Posts
    992
    klar, have you picked up a pacraft?

  22. #72
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Summit North
    Posts
    5,390
    Thanks for this ongoing TR, really enjoy the images and words.
    Alpental Indigenous

  23. #73
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    OOTAH
    Posts
    2,079
    How the hell have I not seen this until today? Thanks for sharing your adventures! Although, I must admit I will miss your Euro outings.
    Samuel L. Jackson as Jules Winnfield: Oh, I'm sorry. Did I break your concentration?

  24. #74
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    In the shadow of the wasatch
    Posts
    1,992
    New updates are super good. Oh Alaska I hear your call

  25. #75
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Westchester, New York
    Posts
    3,345
    Legal alien in NYC.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    肉豆蔻崔

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