Greetings to everyone out there in the WATCH FOR ROCKS traveling blogosphere! I am so glad that you are along to share my journey. Recently I have fielded a couple of requests (YOU KNOW WHO YOU ARE ^_^) concerning the amount of detail in my blog – and I have listened! You want more detail! You want the inside scoop, the nitty-gritty, the down-and-dirty of exactly what I am doing and what I am experiencing here during my summer in bush Alaska.
OK I can do that. I still hope to include lots of pictures too, though. I guess I was operating under the old saw “A picture is worth a thousand words,” and I wasn’t exactly sure how much time you all wanted to devote to reading this literary masterpiece of the blogging genre. More? Less? Well, we’ll see how this new paradigm (big word!) shift goes. I think it will be fun and hope you think so, too! Leave lots of comments! Become a follower!
Tonight is most likely my last night in King Salmon, at least for now. Bright and early Tuesday (starting at 7:00 a.m.) we will load up the Park plane and head out to Brooks Camp, a distance of about 22 miles up Naknek Lake. There are a couple of unknowns right now, mainly concerning which plane we actually will end up flying in. There is the Cessna 185, the 4-seater with balloon tires that lands on land (runway, gravel bar, dirt strip, beach, whatever is available). This is the plane I flew in last week on my Katmai Orientation Flight. Then there is the 4-seater DeHavilland Beaver which is a bit larger and is fitted with pontoons for a water landing. If Naknek Lake conditions are good and the water is up we most likely will take the Beaver. It is already at the dock on Naknek River near NPS headquarters. Otherwise we will take the Cessna and land on the beach. In either plane a seat will be removed to accommodate all of our STUFF.
Most of my STUFF has been packed and is sitting in the hallway of the dorm, ready to be loaded into the plane tomorrow. There are just a few things that must wait for the morning to be packed – mostly frozen foods which I will put in my suitcase right before I leave. We all will pitch in and clean our dorm space (bathrooms, kitchen, sleeping area, etc). We also pitch in to load the plane. My roommate and I are on the schedule (tentative and subject to change, of course) to fly out second, around 9:30 a.m. We each are allowed to take up to 5 packages along with us on our trip. Then the pilot will somehow get all the rest of our STUFF out to us. Eventually.
Christina and our STUFF in the basement
So this evening I decided to take myself out for a “farewell to King Salmon” dinner across the street at King Ko Inn and work on the blog. The internet at King Ko was down yesterday and it is down again today (apparently some guest used up all the bandwidth downloading movies) but that’s ok – I generally type my posts in Word (so I have a copy on file) and then copy and paste them into WATCH FOR ROCKS. So when I am done with my cup of seafood chowder, halibut appetizer, and of course 2 beers, I will go over to the Park office and post this. The Park computer did not accept my external hard drive yesterday (which is where I save the pix) and so I couldn’t send any. I have a plan for today, though. I’ll try again on another computer.
I have had a good 2 weeks in King Salmon but am ready to move on to the next part of my adventure in Katmai National Park and Preserve. There are lots more folks showing up in KS, particularly fishery workers since the boats are getting ready to go out. Some of the Katmai staff will work out of King Salmon, some will work in the Katmai backcountry as law enforcement rangers or bear technicians, and still others will come out to Brooks Camp in another week or so and do what they do.
There are a couple of weeks of orientation left for the interpretive staff before the park opens for visitors on 6/1, but this will be done at Brooks Camp. The interpreter’s day-long trip out to the Valley of Ten Thousand Smokes is scheduled for 5/25. I can’t wait!!!
And guess what else – I may be able to have internet access on my laptop at Brooks Camp. WOO HOO!!!