Sunday, May 18, 2008

Alaska Sunday VI

The Haul Road – 414 miles of dirt, gravel, and pot holes

See part I of the Haul road saga from last week

For those looking for Sunday's Camera Critters,
Scroll down and see the Flower Beetles playing Rugby.
There are two posts for today.


Today’s post on Alaska will be abbreviated.

Yesterday, the temperature was 75-80 F., and we spent the entire day at Hagerman NWR. We saw 45 species of birds including more Spotted sandpipers that I have ever seen on the migration route and lots of beautiful Black terns. And for those that are worried about where all of the Dicksissles are – well, they are alive and well at Hagerman. Seems like they were in every tree. This morning we are off to the Ft. Worth Nature Refuge to look for Tiger Beetles. It may still be early for them there, but we will find something great. We always do.

Next week I will continue with the travelogue portion of the drive on the Haul Road from Coldfoot to Deadhorse. There we will cross over Atigun Pass, the highest in Alaska, and then drop down onto the tundra on the way to the Arctic Ocean.

Atigun Pass (el. 1415 m./4643 ft.) is a high mountain pass across the Brooks Range in Alaska. While famous among bush pilots for difficulty of crossing the pass with small planes (Anaktuvuk Pass is favored as the safer flying route), it is the only pass in the Brooks Range that is crossed by a road (the Dalton Highway).

Atigun Pass is the northernmost pass in the world that is kept open year-round and the highest year-round pass in Alaska.


Atigun Pass in July
(Click on the photos for much larger views)
There is still plenty of snow


Looking Back at Atigun Pass
(The pass is the first notch on the left side)
Alaska Pipeline


I will leave you with another photograph of one of my favorite wildflowers along this road – the Fireweed.

Fireweed


For an amazing photograph,
Scroll down two posts to see a Long-tailed Jaeger playing in a storm on this portion of the road.


Alaska Sunday is a collection of photographic remembrances of our driving trip from Texas to Alaska.
18,000 miles, 16 weeks, 16 western states including Alaska and four Canadian Provinces.
No chronological order, just anything of interest that got in front of our cameras.

Troy

19 comments:

The Texican said...

As always, you do an amazing job with your cameras and commentary.

b13 said...

Beautiful captures. Alaska is one place that I do intend to visit. You did a fantastic job capturing the essence of the wonderful landscape.

And I love that shot of the beetles below too :)

Daryl said...

Once again awersome photos and travelog .. I am linking/adding you to my blogroll ..

:-Daryl

Sandpiper said...

These pictures are incredible! I enjoy your travel journal so much.

Salty said...

Awesome! I love the Alaskan photographs! It is a place I would certainly like to visit someday.

Thanks for dropping by Country Captures

Shellmo said...

The colors in your Alaskan pipeline photo are just outstanding - I am in great admiration of your photography skills. Love reading about your alaska trip - can't wait for the hubby & I to experience it ourselves one day.

Chris said...

WOW! Those pictures look like postcards, great work!!!

Hugh said...

Those pictures look like DREAMS. Gorgeous.

Andrea said...

The fireweed is awesome. Very nice photos.

Rambling Round said...

Wow! That fireweed is magnificent!

evlahos said...

great post. amazing captures

fishing guy said...

Troy: Those are very nice photos, thanks for sharing.

Louis la Vache said...

Each of these could be Sky Watch posts! Fantastic!

"Louis"thanks you for visiting his blogs! He appreciates both your visits and comments!

quinttarantino said...

This is just like we were travelling through Alaska guided by two fantastic guides called Martha & Troy Exotic Trips ...

photowannabe said...

Breathtaking and yourfireweed is super.

Island Rambles Blog said...

Again,I am stunned by the quality of your photos...love that entire field of fireweed and the crisp colors of your photos...I really wanna go to Alaska now...

julie said...

That beautiful pipeline photo breaks my heart. What are we thinking to do that to Alaska?

Stacey Huston said...

Troy these photos are beautiful, Just can't duplicate the wonderful colors of nature that's for sure.. thanks for sharing

Joe said...

Great shots. What camera and lens do you use? I use a Canon PowerShot SD80IS and a Canon Rebel XIT with the Tamron 28-300 MM lens.