Dawn's Early Light  

Posted by Stan Harrington

After my early morning experience on Wednesday (See Previous Posting), I purposely set my alarm for 4:15 a.m., the price of admission was well worth seeing the dawning of the day. Once again, the show was even more spectacular than the previous day. Myself, Dutch, and the song birds once again enjoyed the the solitude. At 5:30 a.m. and three cups of coffee later, the show was completed and the new day was born. (Pictures are posted in sequence as they occurred.)

Good Morning Alaska  

Posted by Stan Harrington

Wednesday morning, I awoke at 4:44 a.m. Finding my way into the kitchen to make a pot of coffee, I noticed a red hue shining through the glass of our back door. Myself and my dog "Dutch" would spend the next hour sitting on our back stoop thoroughly enjoying the natural aerial light show. The quietness was only broken by the choir of a multitude of song birds providing the background music. While sipping my coffee, I could only think how fortunate I was to be witnessing the birth of this new day. The entire time, "Dutch" laid at my feet facing the rising sun, perhaps enjoying the show as much as I. What a great way to start the first day of the rest of my life.

Global Warming Trend  

Posted by Stan Harrington

Despite the warnings of Nobel Prize Recipient Al Gore, I have not been assured that we are in a trend of catastrophic Global Warming. The following pictures were taken at 0630 this date at our home in Anchor Point. I should have followed my intuitions and installed "smudge pots" in the flower beds that we planted two days ago. Although the first picture is of frost surrounding a bouquet of Pansies, the second picture is a puddle of water that has been transformed to ice. During the past twenty five years of non-Global Warming, in Anchor Point we normally have two months of the year in which you do not need to worry about a late frost. Those months being June and July. Perhaps, we will have a warming trend in July. I would suggest the Nobel Prize Selection Committee ask Al Gore to return his prize, including the cash sum that he received and return to his work at in improving the Internet in which he invented. Until I see a warming trend, I am going to burn some fossil fuel in my "smudge pots".

Travel Industry  

Posted by Stan Harrington

The travel industry has changed so much over the past several years, what was once a luxury has become a nightmare. The rental car industry has even increased their regulations, as well as their prices. Just recently, I was reserving a rental car to make a short trip in the lower forty eight. Wanting to drop the car off at a different location than in which I rented it, I come across this nifty little rule from Alamo Rental Car. Read it carefully.

"A vehicle can be rented in one location and returned to another. Some one way rentals are assessed a one time drop charge in addition to the rental rate (see Drop Charge for more details). Please book your one way rentals in advance. Rentals that are returned within the same city could be subject to a drop charge. Certain one way rentals, such as San Francisco to Honolulu, (or vice versa) are not allowed."

I guess that rules out any trans-Pacific Ocean driving trips, unless you are making it a round trip and dropping off the car at the same location in which you picked it up.

Why Hasn't He Written  

Posted by Stan Harrington

In my early years as a father, once in a great while my children would require a little guidance in personal responsibility and the accepted behavior among siblings. Having cleared and landscaped our property in Colorado, I had reserved a small pile of the famed Colorado Rocky Mountains. Perhaps, the pile contained two wheel barrow loads of small stones neatly piled to the side of our outbuilding. When warranted, which was a regular basis with their age group and gender, it would be their task to move the rocks to a new location. If the problem persisted at the completion of the task, they would then return the rocks to their original spot. With today standards, perhaps it would be judged as cruel and mistreatment, but it was effective. Today, as adults, they laugh about the rock pile and how often they had the opportunity to re-bond as family members while moving rocks. It was only recently that I learned that one of my children uses this model of of behavioral science with their own children.

I love rocks, they are such a useful item. You can build anything out of them, they last forever. I love looking at the rock formations that mother nature has carved throughout the world, some of the most scenic rock formations are in our United States. Over the years, I have built a great number of rock fences, flower beds, rock gardens, and sidewalks. However, it was only recently that I relived my children's childhood and had a few days on the "rock pile". I am now well disciplined and have my head right with the world.
It all commenced with the mutual agreement with my wife that we would give our landscaping a "new look" and at the same time cut back on the size of some of our flower beds. This involved the movement of about ten tons of armour rock from our existing flower beds. We dug up rocks, strained on a few to move them, and for those that were to large to move by hand, we reverted to towing them with our reliable snow plow truck to the rock storage area. Most people when moving and stacking rocks throw them into a large pile. As a hint, if you ever intend to use them again you should grade them by size.

This Is The Main Storage Area, Pile One And Two. This Site Contains Those Rocks In The Large And Medium Grade Size Rocks.

This Site Is Pile Number Three And Contains Medium To Small Rocks. Pile Number Four Is Not Pictured, They Have Been Transported To the "Hole In The Wall" For A Future Landscaping Project.

For The Past Ten Years, This Has Been The Location For All Of These Rocks. You Do Not See Those Rocks In The Columbine And Lupine Bed. They Have To Stay To Preserve The Flowers.

Construction Of The New Flower Beds Have Commenced. Since This Picture Was Taken, This Phase Has been Completed. Weather Permitting, Final Construction Should Be Completed By Wednesday.

During the cold months of this winter, I will most likely develop a concept on what I am going to do with all my rocks and construction will commence in the Spring of 2009. I look forward to that, but yet this year, I still have one more large rock garden to build, so once again, I will move the rocks and dig them back into the earth from hence they were given birth. I am so disciplined.

Anchor Point News  

Posted by Stan Harrington

Anchor Point (APN 6/11/2008) It was rudely brought to my attention that I have not posted in a few days! However, I thank you for the birthday wishes.

Early spring has arrived in Anchor Point and the busy time of the year. Being campground hosts at HITW has become a full time job, like about twenty hours a day on the weekends, but so much fun. Week days, have been trying to get some landscaping and summer preparations made. Getting there but it seems to be going slow between the rain showers.
Mama Moose in the picture wandered around Moose Meadows for several days and it is evident that she decided it was a safe place to bring new life into the world. She brought baby out a few days ago for us to review. She has decided it is safe and remains with us. I have heard Bull Moose in the rut, I have heard Cow Moose grunting, but the first night she visited us she finally wandered off so I assumed it was safe to let the dogs out. They got about half way across the lawn when I heard a "growl" that would make the hair on your neck rise. The dogs heard it as well and immediately returned to the sanctuary of the deck. Never did see her, but she let out three more growls from the alder patch before I finally got the dogs and myself into the house. It sounded more like a bear than a moose.

This past Saturday morning, six of us from camp went fishing together at the Picnic Hole. At 4:00 a.m., we arrived at the Picnic Hole just in time to see a young Brown Bear crossing the river below us. (First Brown Bear I have seen on the lower river in my 50 years on the river) Then we noticed a Mama Moose with two calves, she went downstream to the edge of the bluff where the river makes a 90 degree turn into the Dudas Hole. Not wanting to climb the bluff with her babies or go into the river, she put the babies on the edge of the bank and then got in front of them facing upstream at the bear. She was ready to stand her ground. Being a young bear, he did the smart thing upon reaching the bank and headed up river away from the moose. The two fishermen on that side of the river did not seem to concerned that a bear was walking behind them. I would have loved to see them go swimming to get to our side of the river.

I have been traveling a lot, I have been to Anchorage (ANC) a good number of times, been to Denver (DEN) several times, Chicago (ORD) a few times, Minneapolis - St Paul, Minnesota (MSP), Columbus, Ohio (CMH), Omaha, Nebraska (OMA) and Lincoln, Nebraska (LNK). I visited all of these fair cities over the span of 16 hours and came to one solid conclusion, if you live in Lincoln, Nebraska you will never get to fly on Alaska Airlines. Even the live person at the help desk for the airline had to agree with me. I am going to apply for a job a the airport as a baggage handler, I know all the city codes now.

There will be a migration to the north in a few days by a herd of Moose. Three Moose will arrive in ANC from DEN at 1332 Wednesday, June 25th and return to the winter habitat on August 7th. The fourth Moose will arrive at ANC from DEN on July 28th and return on the same date as the remaining herd. They will be traveling through Ogalala from Lincoln (LNK) to Denver (DEN) so they will be stopping by to visit Claire Allen.

Brer Bear and I fished this morning, of course I picked up a nice King Salmon, little less than 40 pounds in my Bridge Hole and a couple of nice Steelhead. This King Salmon has a real nice looking head, with blue eyes so I did save it for mounting. Bearman lost a King, fishing is still slow and the run appears to be either real late or real poor. Current fish count as of 6/10 is 2,833 in comparison to 7,758 a year ago on the same date. One more weekend and Wednesday remaining in the season. There is a lot of pressure on the river this year, this past weekend was very, very ugly on the lower river, looked a lot like the Russian River at the height of the commercial Red Salmon fishery.

Got started in removing ten tons of armour rock from all of our flower beds. The only conclusion that I came to was that I was a much better man ten years ago when I planted them than I am today. Either that or those damm rocks grew with all the fertilizer and water we have put on them. Came across several that were dug in as base rocks, finally extracting them, we could not move them. Tried the ole trick of tipping the wheelbarrow on it's side and rolling the rock in, but the rock was to big. My helper then suggested if the snow plow can pull trees and alders, why not rocks? We delivered the four big rocks to the HITW via the snowplow and tow rope with the blade to push them into place upon arrival. By the way, son in law we need a new handicap tow rope, might tow trees but did not hold up under the strain of the rock and skidding it across the gravel parking lot not to mention the asphalt. Also appears, that the Old Sterling Highway from our driveway to the HITW could use a little asphalt patch work, but my rocks did not create all those gouges and broken asphalt. But I did manage to get the bigger rocks pushed into place in front of a couple of summer homes to use as markers for designated parking. I tried to talk my helper into riding the rocks in a similar fashion as we witnessed someone riding the trees, but she is not into surfing. Thank god it rained today, so I can blog! We only have 7.3 tons of rock remaining to be be moved.

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