Welcome to the second installment of the Bucket List: Alaska series. If you missed the first post, about our introduction to Alaska in Anchorage, you can go back and read that here.
After a fun day in Anchorage, we were up early to start our land tour adventure and catch the Alaska Railroad’s Wilderness Express train to Talkeetna. It was an overcast day, but that could not dampen our excitement to leave the big city and enter wild Alaska!
Above clockwise from left: Getting ready to board the Wilderness Express, really nice glass-topped cars provide a wonderful view, friends Pam & Eric McGee, Jerry, and yours truly, settling in for the ride to Talkeetna.
And the scenery did NOT disappoint! Some of these shots are through the glass dome, please excuse any reflections or rain on the images. We passed through a few towns and saw a few remote communities of homes, but for the most part, we were immersed in nature. I don’t know if it was due to the noise of the train, but wildlife was scarce on this journey.
The train dropped us off near the tiny village of Talkeetna, but far enough away that we had to take a bus to the village. The weather was threatening, and we were starving since the train restaurant had a technical issue and could not serve breakfast, so we headed straight for lunch at the Denali Brewpub. We enjoyed a variety of tasty menu offerings, and a super Irish Red Ale called Single Engine Red, a nod to the ever-present aircraft in Alaska. Yum!
Following lunch, we wandered down to the river bank and explored a little. The weather was holding…at least for now.
The weather took over at this point and we ran for shelter as the rain pounded down. I understand there is a neat historic cemetery in Talkeetna, and cool jet boat adventures; unfortunately, we weren’t able to experience those. Instead, we headed off to our accommodations for the night at Trapper Creek, at the McKinley Princess Wilderness Lodge, which is the subject of the next post. Please join me there!