Monday, July 16, 2007

Helicopter ride over glacier and dog sled camp

This was really expensive to do, but totally worth it. We all really enjoyed it. I had been in a helicopter before (in Hawaii with my sister), but neither of the boys had. It is a lot different from an airplane. The copter goes straight up, there isn't any taxi -ing on the runway. it is very loud and you have to cover your ears with headphones they give you, which were all attached to the radio, so we could communicate. what a beautiful trip over the glacier and the mountains; especially given the openness of the helicopter. i mean the view was incredible! and you are right on top of everything. it was really something.

We landed at the dog sled camp and was greeted by our musher, Julie. She and the others there, live at the camp for 4 months (May thru September). They spend their days greeting guests (tourists!) like us and then in between runs, they are training the dogs. The big dog sled race in Alaska, is the Ididarod; so it is serious business. They live in tents and use heaters to keep warm. but apparently the gear they use to sleep in, is made so they don't get cold. There is a tent where they can shower and use the bathroom. Once a week, they go into Skagway for a real shower, nice meal and to check email, etc. Julie is up there at the camp with her husband and 2 dogs. There is also a cook who works there full time cooking meals for the group. she made us some cookies, which were given after our dog sled ride and tour of the camp. we also met a few of the puppies. it was a great experience. The sun is very hot up there and they have to be careful not to get sunburned. for our ride, i rode in front of Julie and dillon and josh took turns mushing on the sled behind us. it was very bumpy, but we did feel like we were going pretty fast.

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