TRAVELS WITH GREASE AND PADDLE
Wednesday, October 11, 2006
Heading South With the Geese and Whales
What goes up must go down. I'm rolling the dice and trying to drive this Mercedes, thirty years old this month, all the way back to San Diego.......
The Alaska summer was fantastic, with its typical mixture of work, adventure, wildlife, crazy people, and loads of fish. The greasemobile ran like a top, fueled primarily by a halibut&chips shack on the cruise ship dock. Its unbelievable when you think about it, all these tourists spilling off their floating bohemoth, already stuffed with 24 hour buffets, faced with various options for spending their few hours in port. Should we visit the totem pole parks? Go on a flightseeing trip over Misty Fiords National Monument? Hike in the largest contiguous temperate rainforest in the world? Shop for jewelry? Naw, let's go get some fried food. Works for me, the grease taxi was well- fueled all summer. In early October I returned from an 11-day kayak trip and just a few hours later drove onto the ferry bound for Prince Rupert, B.C. and the long road home. Even though the car was over-loaded on the way up, I decided to take on a passenger, my friend and fellow USFS kayak ranger, Ben Houdek. We figured if we barged his stuff and some of mine to Seattle we could make it work. So, after filtering some surplus fish&chip juice in the cold driving rain, we embarked.