Alaska TripReport: Two Weeks in a Springdale - Fiberglass RV


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Old 08-16-2014, 08:16 PM   #1
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Alaska TripReport: Two Weeks in a Springdale

Yep, LadyHawk & DesertHawk did another 'Fly-Up' to see our son & his family. Three weeks total, two camping with our son & family. Our 4th time to go see them, 3rd time to go camping. This was the longest time spent camping.

Friday, July 26: We drove from Eielson AFB, near Fairbanks, to Eagle River, near Anchorage, after FishHawk, our son, got off work (around noon). A cloudy, rainy day (off & on), we could not see Denali at all due to the cloud cover. Lot of road construction as one comes into the Nat'l Park entrance area from Fairbanks, slow going, but not too rough. Lot of single lane traffic, guided through at times, flagman stop or start other times.

LadyHawk & I had a hotel room reserved in Eagle River. They could not get us a room on Elmendorf AFB, turns out they were having an Air Show Saturday. FishHawk & Fam Stealth Camped in the parking lot of the hotel.

I'll began my account with our stay in Seward:
July 26 ~ 29, 2014- Saturday to Tuesday: We camped on the east shore of Resurrection Bay across the bay from Seward at the City of Seward's Spring Creek Campground on Nash Road. Having no amenities, except a couple dumpsters & port-a-johns, not even designated sites, the campground, though used a lot at times, was never crowded. Used mainly by those there to fish, it was a great place for our 3 granddaughters to ramp & play.

We did some walks along the beach, admired the vistas of the mountains & glaciers as well as Seward across the bay and the mountains & glaciers behind the campground, even the dry dock activity near by was interesting. Several eagles were around, at least one pair as a couple which is a treat to watch & photo. Of course, the boats & ships moving about to & from Seward are neat to watch. Many gulls around to put on a show as well as some crows, which did make a mess of a trash bag left out one night. My son did some fishing, which is his thing to do, but only caught pinks, which he only kept one to cook & eat in camp. Pink or dog salmon are not suited for freezing & not as tasty, he says.

On Monday, the 28th of July, my son drove all 8 of us around the commercial/dry dock area just south of the campground on back roads to where the beach continues on south. A nice walk along the gravel size rocky beach. We walked maybe a mile or so before it was cut by a swiftly moving creek/river with glacier clouded water. It was a windy, cold day with dark clouds around. That evening, it began to rain hardily.

We had been to this campground last year, but did not do the longer beach walk. Last year, Lady Hawk & I were camping in a rented Aliner, the second one rented from the Air Force Outdoor Services at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JEBER) in Anchorage. Our son rented a Springdale TT from Fort Richardson's Outdoor Services for us this year. Nice & roomy & well constructed trailer. Two of our three granddaughters slept with us as they did in the Aliners. Eight in all on our two week camping trip this year, the Springdale was really nice to have at meals & to have a place to hang out on wet, cold & windy days.

Seward is a neat town to visit as well with the Alaska SeaLife Center, places to eat & shopping places. Lot of fishing & sightseeing charters, which we did not do.

We enjoy camping at Seward's Spring Creek Campground. There is a very busy city campground along the waterfront & near harbor/marina in Seward & at least two more more inland, in more forest-like sittings & a Military (Army) campground (an Air Force one has been closed) and perhaps (?), one or more private campgrounds. Water & dump station is across the road from the Waterfront Park Campground. This campground has great views of the marina & harbor & ship traffic as well as the mountains & glaciers, but is also very narrow & the sites are very tightly packed together. Cost: $15 per RV per day. Same as the ones in town, except the ones with hookups, perhaps. Not sure about the military one.

We are now back in Las Cruces. Flew back to Tucson, Sunday, Aug 10. Drove home Wednesday.

LadyHawk & DesertHawk ~ Happy Campers with many Happy Memories!

A few photos:
Hawks @ Alaska SeaLife Center

Campsite Views

Around Campground: Eagles, Fireweed

Window Views Springdale's Bed

FishHawk's Catch

More To Follow.........
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Old 08-16-2014, 08:37 PM   #2
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Looks like a lot of fun!


Sent from my iPhone using Fiberglass RV
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Old 08-16-2014, 08:48 PM   #3
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Seward Seward Con't: Seward's Harbor View CampgroundContinued

Seward Con't:
Seward's Harbor View Campground, Not a Bad Looking CG, But Very Close Together & Traffic to contend with.

One of Seward's Inland/Forested Campgrounds, near Military Resort. With a Scamp in one site.

Seward's Dump Station Viewed from Waterfront Campground. Yep, That's the Springdale IN TOW by FishHawk's TC.

View of Spring Creek Campground from HarborView or Waterfront Park Campground. Spring Creek CG is across the Bay, left of the white building.

More to Follow.....
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Old 08-16-2014, 09:45 PM   #4
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Wow, Adrian what a dream trip that would be! Someday...

I once spent a week in January at Eielson AFB for an Arctic Survival Course in '81. It was -40 F. at night. We stayed in shelters we built from what nature provided. I vowed to come back under more favorable conditions. The scenery you captured in your pictures re-lit the flame. Thanks for the report!

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Old 08-17-2014, 12:01 AM   #5
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Seward Con't:

Photos of what I call, 'Glacier View Pebble Beach' were we hiked.

Monday, the day before we left the area. See Why I Call it 'Glacier View Pebble Beach'?

Purchase of Rubber Boots in Fairbanks, A Wise Choice! For each of us.

Glacier River/Creek, Ended Our 'Pebble' Beach Hike.

It had been a very windy, cold day with clouds building up in on the mountains & over the bay as well. Once Back from the Hike, the Weather Reached Us, Rainy Rest of Afternoon, Evening & Night.

But next morning, what a difference.

Having a larger trailer was really nice to weather the Weather in.

DesertHawk in his ManCave.

Tuesday, we moved camp to Cooper Landing & the Russian River Nat'l Forest Campground.

To be Continued at a later time, the Hawk is tired of the computer.
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Old 08-17-2014, 01:10 AM   #6
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Smile Some Thoughts & Photos: Alaska Sunsets, Rain & Green Landscapes

Yep, Thinking about Alaska Sunsets, Rain & Green Landscapes. We did experience a few. And a few Rainbows as well. Always enjoyable.

Yes, the Monsoons have been around the Southwest. About time! Speaking of Monsoons, I noticed yesterday just how green our Organ Mountains have gotten since we'd been gone. I need to drive out that way tomorrow & take a few pics.

Missed most of the Monsoons, however. As I mentioned, just returned from 3 weeks in Alaska & have been gone about a month in all. Flew out of & back from Tucson, which has been have more rain than Southern New Mexico. Parts of Arizona along I-10 was very green when we drove to Las Cruces Wednesday.

Saw a little bit of rain in Alaska, but lucked out with mostly Sunny, Blue Sky days. Especially, when we were camping.

Here's a Sunset I snapped while driving toward Eagle River & Anchorage, not far out of Wasilla about 3 weeks ago Friday. Checking on Google Maps, the water must have been part of Knik Arm close to where the Knik River enters on the way to Cook's Inlet & out to the Gulf of Alaska.

It had been raining on the way from Fairbanks on & off. Rained that night in Eagle River. Then it was mostly Sunny with Blue Skies. But not really warm, for us anyway.

Saw a lot of water in Alaska: rivers, lakes, creeks, bays, arms of the ocean. Reason it was Extremely Green this year, kind of dry & dusty when there last year. Many WildFires & Smoke from them last year around the Fairbanks area.

Photos will try to convey some of what I have mentioned.

More of the Trip Report Will Follow.....
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Old 08-17-2014, 05:53 AM   #7
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Wow what a kool trip? Thanks for shareing with us.
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Old 08-17-2014, 07:29 AM   #8
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what a beautiful trip!! the photos are gorgeous
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Old 08-17-2014, 08:05 AM   #9
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I retire in December from 30 years in Law enforcement. I took a cruise once to Alaska but only got to see the more touristy spots. I want to take a 3-4 month trip from N.C. out west then up into Alaska then finish it off through the Canadian Rockies back into U.S. and return home. I'm a gold prospector at heart and want to go to Chicken Alaska. I know there's not much in Chicken but it's a gold miners thang. Yea, I know thang is spelled wrong LOL. My wife works part time now as a nurse so paying off a few bills and then we should be able to plan the trip I've always dreamed of. However, my parents are not in the best of health and that worries me. One part of me feels obligated to stay close. But then I think if I don't take the trip soon I may never get the chance. I am a 64 hour drive to Chicken from N.C. My plan is to travel 4- 6 hours a day and just take our time; at that rate it would take anywhere from 10-16 days to make it to Chicken.
But I want to be able to take my time and if we decide to stop for a few days in any certain place we can. God willing that's my trip. Just hope it will all come together.
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Old 08-17-2014, 08:39 AM   #10
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It looks beautiful. Thanks for giving me some specific sites (and sights) to go with my Alaska dream-trip!
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Old 08-17-2014, 09:43 PM   #11
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Smile Alaska TripReport Con't: Russian River/Cooper Landing

July 29 ~ Tuesday, we woke on Resurrection Bay to a sunny, bright day with blue skies, still windy, but a beautiful day. Later, we broke camp, drove to Seward to dump tanks, stop at a Safeway for supplies before driving to Cooper Landing. The day was still sunny with blue skies, but no wind & it was warmer. We would be in tall trees now.

Cooper Landing is a short drive from Seward. Away from the coastline & the sea, it's at a higher elevation with forests & two rivers running through. Like most of Alaska, there was many lakes around with Kenai Lake being considerately large & very long. The area is a noted salmon & trout fishing mecca with loads of guides & places to stay. Mainly on the rivers.

This will be the second time, LadyHawk & I have stayed there. Stopped by last year, but gave up on getting a campsite. FishHawk likes to fish there & to stay at the very popular Russian River CG, a Nat'l Forest Campground, nestled between the large Kenai River & the small Russian River. An extremely neat place & an excellent campground with paved roads & paved sites.

We had to wait a couple of hours to see if we scored a site, this time we waited to see & we did. Normally, they have a 3 day time limit. We were able to get 2 nights. We took the time to fill the fresh water tanks at the dump station, then wait to see our camping fate for the night. Yep, not problems getting a site. An excellent one as well, close to access site to the Russian. $9 per night with my Federal Senior Pass, per site, double site, two RVs & a Durango. Best camping fees on our trip. An extremely nice young woman at the booth, very pleasant & professional.

FHawk & his wife's nephew, Ax, walked down to the Russian River from the campsite soon after getting the campsite setup. After awhile, the rest of us walked down. There's an excellent system of walkways setup with steps & ramps going down the somewhat steep 'canyon' like hillsides to the river.

A walkway/boardwalk then makes it way along the bank of the river to the confluence of the Kenai. At times, this is a raised metal and/or a man-made material. Other times, it's laid onto the surface. Usually, there are side rails along the path/boardwalk. At intervals, access boardwalks extent over to the river with steps down into the river. This boardwalk system runs from the confluence of the Kenai with many entry/exit stairways/ramps up to parking areas for well over a mile, when the boardwalk ends with a more natural path/trail going on. It's constructed & maintained to keep the vegetation from being destroyed & keep the river unpolluted, to keep the salmon stream healthy.

We didn't walk all the way to the confluence. Our fishermen had, but without luck. We had returned to camp for some time before they returned. We had a late supper that night. After supper, our son & his wife when down to fish & to give her some away time from the girls. G'ma & Papa watched them. They watched videos in the Springdale. Computers are neat things.

We had seen numerous fishing along the Kenai driving in. FH reported, it was crowded at the confluence, too. Some were having success. It's a beautiful area. Down along the Russian, it seemed much like a rain forest with huge ferns growing.

We had another fulfilling day!

To be Continued......
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Old 08-17-2014, 10:39 PM   #12
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Smile Con't. Russian River Campground, Cooper River


Wednesday, We woke to another sunny day & somewhat warm for Alaska standards. Taking a break from fishing. We took the Durango to the trail head of the Russian River Falls Trail. The trail head is just down the road from the several camping loop within the area of the campground boundaries. A 2.3 mile hike mostly up hill to the falls, which proved to an easy to moderate hike. Extremely picturesque place with two viewing decks & salmon trying jump & swim up the stair step falls with a gaggle of others milling around in the poll at the base. Carried lunches with us & water of course. It took a good part of the day, we spent a long time viewing the falls/salmon. Extremely enjoyable! Made the entire 4.6 mile hike without a problem. So much better than last year (I wouldn't have tried it). Surprised everyone, even me (except LHawk).

FHawk & Ax went back to the confluence fishing after returning. I rested my back from the hike on my bed. Everyone else mainly rested & the kids played outside.

After the fishermen return, still without success, FHawk, once again, grilled our supper for us. He grilled most evenings for supper, a really good master grill chef.

FishHawk's FRS walkie talkie, a CB-like, radio slipped out his shirt pocket when bent over in the river & floated away. Another fisherman retrieved it for him down stream. It worked at first. He called his DW to ask her to drive to an access closer to the confluence to pick them up. At first, she could not understand him. After giving it a couple slaps, she could then hear him. He used it a few more times, then it stopped. After taking the battery out, air drying it with a hair dryer, it started to work again. After monkeying with it awhile, it stopper again.

All in All, it was a Extremely Rewarding Day!

More coming later......
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Old 08-17-2014, 11:19 PM   #13
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Smile To Papa-T concerning Chicken

Our son has caribou hunted in the Chicken area, two or three times. Always has been successful. What he has said & the photos he has shared with us of the area, it is extremely Alaskan with it's colorful lichen covered rocky hills with tundra instead of grass and/or trees. Especially, in the Fall with the tundra in a blaze of color.

It would be a difficult landscape to hunt. They often could not get the ATVs close to the fallen animals, due to the often boggy tundra in the low areas. Take a strong, young person for it. IMHO.

He & his hunting buddies have had some adventures out that way. Often sleeping out in the tundra in tents. Always camping out way in the boondocks.

Chicken does have a campground, a small general store, an air port a few other things. It's on the way to the Yukon as well. Plenty of places to boondock closer to the town, too.

He has a gold pan now, as far I know hasn't used it yet. Other's at the Air Force Base have & some have used water pressure & scuba gear to hunt for it.

Good Luck with your Quest!
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Old 08-17-2014, 11:39 PM   #14
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It's addictive for sure. I will never get rich prospecting. Usually I never make enough to pay for the gas. BUUUUUUTTT, you never know where the big nugget is lying. All those tiny specks come from something bigger. My brother in-law prospects in Vermont and does pretty good at times. Were heading up state N.Y. in October to visit him and my DW sister. Him and I are going to hit the creeks in Vermont to his secret spot while were there.
This is what I usually find on a decent day.


This is what my brother in-law was finding last year.
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