Monday, April 02, 2007
One day recently we took a family outing. We have been trying to think of interesting things to do with Zoey that keep her occupied, interested and off her feet. I had a tip about golden eagles at Mile 119 of the Glenn Highway, so we drove Tom's spiffy loaner car out there. First we stopped at Arctic Valley and watched about 50 willow ptarmigan waddle around, try to settle in, move to other roosting spots. They were trying to find the perfect siesta spot. We also spotted an unknown large bird of prey. I didn't capture any great bird shots. Everything just looked like a black spot in the sky or a some kind of white thing in the snow. Boy, white on white is hard to catch.
When we finally got to Mile 119 we saw two golden eagles migrating through in the first five minutes. Then nothing. I guess timing is everything. Zoey is over the moon. She has been wishing for a golden eagle spotting for months now. Her next desire is a mountain bluebird. The landscape you are seeing in the non-sunset pictures is the beginning of the Nelchina basin. It is a high pass area that is near treeline. It is a very special spot with an excellent overview of the land. It is lovely in summer and winter. We hit it when it was not too cold. A friend of mine drove through three weeks earlier and it was -50F. Our day was warm (relatively) and very clear. We could see all the way to Mt. Sanford!
We drove back to town and saw a bald eagle outside just east of Palmer. When we got back to town, Tom grilled some steaks. YUM! We had a glass of wine and relaxed. We also had a killer sunset. I just dig our gnarled hemlock. Most of you know that the hemlock get gnarled by the Chinook winds that blow through here on a regular basis. Luckily, it's been quiet.
After dinner and the news, Tom and I walked out to Powerline Pass for a nearly full moon look at the pass. Our luck continued because the aurora kicked up and put on a show for us. What a lovely day we had.