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Trip Report Awesome 10 days in Alaska- single traveler

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June 2012 -I was VERY VERY LUCKY. It was sunny every day, except the last day, which I've spend it in the train, on the way from Anchorage. All of my prayers were answered, and I was delighted. It was a great vacation. Everything went as planned. See below:

June 14: Anchorage. After renting my car from Hertz with family members discount, I've arrived at Alaska Backpackers Inn hostel around 2AM. Sorry, but this was the worst of the hostels I've been to in Alaska. I couldn't sleep well the first night, due to the noises and....midnight sun. The Bent Prop Hostel from downtown was closed for renovations.

June 15: Homer. After the breakfast, I decided to enjoy the scenery of the Seward Hwy. so I decided to head over to Homer, taking my time . Great scenery. Highly recommended. I've made detour to Kenai to enjoy lunch there and after that, I was on my way to Homer. I did not kept track of time, so I cannot tell you how long it took me with the stops to get to my Seaside farm Hostel. The hostel's views were priceless. It was a better night sleep, and the host was very nice. Was a bit confusing checking in, but everything went fine.

June 16:Homer: 6am was schedule my bear viewing flight, so I was sleep deprived, but exited. I was able to see 4 bears very close and 2 more far away, but deep inside, I was hoping for some more, but I guess it was early for the bears too. Loved the Homer Spit Rd. I also enjoyed my halibut for lunch there, at Captain Pattie- delicious. Later, I was on the road again to Seward, but first i've made a stop to Safeway for cheaper food and especially cheaper souvenirs.

June 17: Seward , Moby Dick Hostel- clean hostel and nice owners . Enjoyed the Northwestern Fjords Tour for 9 hrs. It is one of the highlights of my trip. I was luckier then the people who booked the day before, who's cruise was cut short due to weather condition. the day i was on the cruise was gorgeous, so we got to see pretty much everything: orcas, wales, etc etc. - mother nature put out for us a great show! I was a little sleepy after the motion sickness pills, so I took a 15 min nap while cruising, but I had no problems and I have't seen any sick people on board. It was great, and 9 hours felt more like 3. They served us breakfast and lunch and I was enjoying the scenery . After the cruise, I've decided to drive to Exit glacier and did some hiking there. Just awesome way to end you day!

June 18: Seward: Another perfect day weather wise , and it was very important considering that i had scheduled at 9am : Seward helicopter tour to Godwin glacier for a dog sled tour (total 90 min). I was lucky that someone else was scheduled for a city tour, and I got to scent more then an hour on the glacier with the dogs and awesome people who are taking care of them. It was magical up there, on the glacier. They give me a tour of their tents, meeting every dog (were 22 dogs trained ) and I was like in heaven. Another highlight of my trip. As soon as I came back from the trip, I was on my way to Wildlife Conservation Center, which was WOW. I had a 3 pm appointment for "behind the scenes tour" which I HIGHLY recommend is not cheap, but worth every penny) . I got up close and personal with 3 baby moose and 2 musk oxen calves. PRICELESS! I'll do it again and again. I had families following me with their kids to capture me feeding the animals,as they were over the other side of the fence. I felt the envy... (it gets a little dustier there, but is much better then muddier if it was a rainy day).
After that , I was on my way back to Alaska Backpackers inn hostel, in Anchorage. Found out the cheaper gas was near Anchorage, while the most expensive was in Homer, and somewhere in between was in Seward.

June 19: Anchorage. Another sunny great day -Visit Alaska Native Heritage Center (9-5pm) . Had a clam chowder soup there and I got sick for few hours, but still enjoining the museum, the locals and the art. Excellent place to get to know more about Alaska.
I've made a stop to Alaska Public Land Center and it was very interesting. I've learned so much from there too. Next time I wouldn't spend much time in Anchorage, as I've seen much of it and is not as nice as small cities as the ones I've seen before and after in Alaska.

June 20: Talkeetna. Talkeetna Air Taxi, the company I've schedule my flight to McKinley , offer to pick me up from the train station and drop me off to my hostel (i was so impressed with them and all the locals- great people and I was very grateful to them). The weather was again on my side, and I could feel my adrenaline going high as I was on that afternoon flight with TAT (glacier landing). For me it was MAGICAL. I'll do it over and over again. My enthusiasm could be
felt all the way to NYC, as I could see clearly the mount Mckinley. It was PERFECT! That was the top of the things to do while in Alaska. Of course I had to stop in Talkeetna and celebrate the past events with few beers . My personal choice was the Beer garden and the beer tasked so good after such a day. The Talkeetna hostel was nice, and convenient located next to TAT. Nice staff, and clean place.

June 21: Denali. After an amazing Adventure class ride with Alaska Railroad train, I was in Denali around 4pm. My hostel shuttle was scheduled for 5: 30pm, so I've decided to take it and then drop off the luggage and then walk around, but unfortunately, I've missed the shuttle, and the next one was at 9pm , and I had to wait, because my luggage wouldn't fir in the lockers. That was my time where I got a little frustrated, but not so much- I was in Denali, at the Wilderness Access Center,and could see and talk to many tourists. In the meantime, the hostel booked for me, at my request a water rafting for the morning, so planning was on going. As I reached the hostel, I was pleased to see how well maintained and great this hostel was- one of the best- ever! And the Denali Morning Hostel staff is just one of the friendliest . All of them came to pick up "the lost one", and on the way I was introduced to their dog and I could see some wild life on the road. They made me forgot all the waiting. And, this was the most comfortable hostel, not to mention that here I've met the most awesome tourists (all ages) that shared the most interesting stories ever. No hotel in the area will have this effect on people like the Denali Morning Hostel.

June 22: Denali. Morning (8am) water rafting in the morning. Very , very cool thing to do- it was again, a wonderful sunny day, and myself and few people decided to go into the glacier water, and it was a super experience. I'll do that again and again, but only with their special suit. After the rafting, I had booked the shuttle bus (1pm) to Eison . Again, mother nature put up a sow for us, with clear view of the mountains, and wild life, most of the animals were hiding, as it was too hot for them. 9pm shuttle back to the hostel, where most of the people (from teenagers to elderly ) shared their wonderful stories of the day/week. Priceless.

June 23: Denali. Shuttle bus to Wonder Lake at 7:15 am all day long. Wonderful day, another perfect view of McKinley. Luckily it didn't rain at all to Wonder LAke, so the mosquitos didn't bother us, although, we were prepared. Back for the 9pm shuttle to go to the hostel, where again, we shared the stories with fellow travelers.

June 24: Denali- Anchorage. 10am: Went for the free sled dog demonstration in the park, and after I've spent some time to Visitor Center. 12pm was my train back to Anchorage, and going Goldstar is the perfect way to go with Alaska Train. Perfect ride, but this time, the weather was more Alaska summer weather, raining much of the day. It was ok for me, but I could imagine how devastating could have been if all my flights were canceled due to the weather condition. In Anchorage, shared the cab to the airport with other tourists, and I waited few hours for my flight, reviewing my trip, very pleased with everything and promising to myself to come back. It was a great experience and I highly recommend visiting Alaska by land, by sea and by air!

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