Sunday, August 29, 2010

Time to Play!

Whew! It's the end of August already.
Time to put the garden to bed, catch the last silvers,
& pull out the accordion & start some serious practicing!
Here's my son, William, practicing his 12 bass Nobel accordion.
He really wants to play the drums or guitar but the accordion is really where it's at!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Hatcher Pass & Independence Mine ~ Alaska

This summer is in the top 5 of rainiest summers on record!
I think it's rained everyday. Not all day but everyday!
So....what do you do? Stay home & watch movies? Not if you're an Alaskan!
You gear up & get outside.
It's summer time in Alaska after all!!
I've been to Hatcher Pass many times in the last 25 or more years but I hadn't been there in probably 5 years & it has changed. It's become very civilized.
There are benches, paved pathways, safety guards, little information signs all over explaining the history of the mine & even port-o-potties! Wow!

Many of the out buildings used to look like this but are now being restored.
The main building were intact but have been spruced up. We were there on a Sunday but the main building wasn't open(?) I wonder why on a weekend there wasn't a park service person or volunteer available? Just curious ~ probably cutbacks in someones budget.

You can see how spread out some of the buildings are ~ can you imagine trying to get around here in the depth of winter? "Depth" being the operative word as there's so much snow here that the road often is closed.

These were the main lodging halls for the men who worked the mines.

A tram system circulated the mines run by electricity up until the mine closed in the 1940's.

A bird's eye view from a trail above the main mine buildings.

Here's William standing in a refurbished mine shaft. The reflection is the tape on his Grunden rain bibs. Grunden's are the best rain gear!

It was a good day in the mines!