18 February 2015

Talking With Americans

Location: Rock Creek RV Resort, Naples, FL, USA
I have been reading a lot of travel blogs lately and a common thread runs through many of them ... that intense interest many Americans have in travelling to Alaska. We have been questioned so frequently during this current trip and over the past several years, about Alaska, that it has prompted me to write this post.

Once someone knows we have driven to and around northern North America a number times, they immediately only want to talk about Alaska, almost as if there is 'nothing' along the 4000 - 5000 plus kilometres between California, Florida or Maine and there. For those folks, it's only about that destination and unfortunately, they often miss the journey completely ... what a shame. 

The journey to Alaska ...

Haines Highway, BC, CANADA

Alaska is undeniably a beautiful state!

A Glacier in Haines, AK, USA
 Haines, AK, USA

Travellers that journey there instead of those that only want to  'get' there, will experience the same stunning landscape in CANADA ... in British Columbia, Yukon and the Northwest Territories, on a much larger scale, with fewer people and in wilderness that is still pristine ... much of it ... ' The TRUE Last Frontier '.

 South Klondike Highway, YT, CANADA

Richard Nelson, an award winning Alaskan author made the following observation during a canoe trip into Yukons' Peel River watershed. 

"Even after 40 years of travel into the remotest parts of Alaska, I was astounded by the magnitude of wildness and beauty. This journey took us into one of the largest, most spectacular, pristine wild lands remaining on earth – the Boreal Forest of Canada. For most Americans, Alaska is the purest icon of wilderness. What they know of Canada is shaped almost entirely by the narrow sliver of tamed, cultivated and urbanized land just above the Canadian border. Even in these days of growing environmental awareness, few Americans have any comprehension that they live adjacent to the largest expanse of untrodden, uncut, undiminished forest anywhere on Earth.

I gradually came to realize that the Canadian Boreal is to Alaska what Alaska is to New Jersey."

Or, this quote from Canadian James Houston, author of several novels including ' Confessions of an Igloo Dweller. ' 

"96% of all Canadians would say to me, "Well, I hear you've been to Alaska.  " No, I would say, "I've been to the Canadian Arctic, a land straight north of here. 

A land that is many times the size of Alaska and is part of your own country." 

Helen on a hike in the Yukons Peel River watershed ... overlooking the Wind River.

We hope to be north, for a few months, once again this year and one of our planned activities is a canoe trip on the Noatak River in Alaska. We are also preparing to travel to parts of the State that we have not yet visited. However, we will enjoy and appreciate all those lovely places that we stop between our home in Ontario and there ... because, for us, travel is about the journey, never just the destination.
Crusty ... an observation

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TEAM: LOAF, Crumby, Wry & Crusty