Saturday, December 5, 2009
These last weeks have been hectic and hard. First we had movers come in and pack us out then we had to worry about shipping out our Yukon. We have been in a hotel now since the 25th of November and thought we can relax but it just got more hectic. The kids were still going to school and wrestling practice, Bo was still clearing and I had to make sure with Bo to get our house cleaned and turned in and everything set before we leave.
We are moving to Ft. Knox, Kentucky and it seemed like we had all the time in the world before the actual time would come but nope it rushed on through and now we are at our last 2 days here in Alaska. The kids had their last day of school today then Nick will wrestle Regionals for LHS since he is ranked #6 in State. Then we head out(by driving not flying-yes in the winter) early Sunday morning to try to reach Haines Junction and cross the border into Canada. We will not be here for the State tournament because we have a ferry to catch in Haines, AK. I know right now it is stressful since we are still here and it is hard to say our goodbyes and still have events like wrestling Regionals, but once we get on the road it will be a new adventure for us.
Our first leg of the journey will be a drive out of Fairbanks to the Alcan Highway to cross the border into Canada and stay the night at Haines Junction. The next day we drive the Haines Highway to Haines, AK once again crossing a border into the US. At Haines we will spend the day there and board the ferry the next day.
These pictures are not mine but I wanted to share how our travels will look like.
The City of Haines
Taken from http://haines.ak.us/index.php
Native Culture - Tlingits
The first people to call the Chilkat Valley home were Tlingit Indians. Originally called "Dei-Shu" or "End of the Trail," Haines is home of the Chilkat Indians whose mother village is Klukwan, located 22 miles north of Haines. Klukwan is recognized as the earliest of the Chilkat villages and contains many reminders of its rich past. Now the Haines Highway into Canada, and previously the Dalton trail used by gold-seekers, the Tlingit trade route to the interior was dubbed the "grease trail' because the most important item carried was oil extracted from the eulachon fish.
Due to the bountiful resources of the area, Tlingits could spend less time on survival and more on developing other skills. Tlingits were the first settlers in the Chilkat Valley, and their traditions still flourish today.
Haines and Fort Seward, History
Haines was named in honor of Francina Haines of the Presbyterian Home Missions Board. Accompanied by his friend, John Muir, S. Hall Young, was the first missionary to the area in 1879. The purpose of their trip was to scout a location for a mission and a school.
The first known meeting between white men and Tlingit took place in 1741 when a Russian ship anchored near Haines and started the fur trade in the area. In 1892, Jack Dalton established a toll road on the Tlingit trade route in to the interior to cash in on gold-seekers and others heading north into Canada. Parts of the Dalton Trail are now the Haines Highway.
In 1902, ongoing border disputes between the U.S. and Canada provided the justification for the first permanent army post in Alaska. The white buildings of Fort William H. Seward still stand and are a distinctive landmark of Haines. Decommissioned in 1947, the fort was bought by a group of war veterans with hopes of creating an arts and commerce community. The buildings are now privately owned homes, accommodations, restaurants, galleries, and shops.
We will be staying at a lodge on the Chilkoot National Park and we will have the Chilkoot River on one end and the lake right by us also. The area is known for bears. But I am not sure if we will see any at this time of the year. I am just anxious to already be there to take in the history, culture and the beauty of the place.
The next day we board a ferry that will take us through the inside passage and end in Bellingham, WA. There we will continue on and stay with my brother for some days in Seattle then the second part of our journey will begin when we leave Washington and go across to the US to end up in Kentucky. I will do my best to keep everyone posted on our trip. We are hoping to enjoy every state we pass through.
Our ferry and the route:
As for now I am just ready to start the first part of our journey since I am anxious in crossing the borders and driving our highways in the winter. I know it will be a memorable drive but I will be happier once we are in Haines.
Tomorrow is a huge day for my son Nick. I wish him lots of luck on his matches and good luck to the rest of the LHS team. We have a great team and of course great coaches and parents, I hate to have to leave at this time but unfortunately that is what we have to do. Good luck LHS wrestlers!!
This week has been exhausting....I am heading to bed...tomorrow will be a long day for us. As everyone is getting ready for the Christmas season we will be trekking across the US. I hope to get on here once in a while and update everyone. As for now good night! :)