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Outside of Mendeltna, AK

It was exactly two months ago today on June 29 when we last moved THE POD more than 100-miles to our next campsite. That was when we left Denali National Park and headed south to the K’esugi Ken Campground in Denali State Park.

Moving more than 100-miles will become the new norm for us as we make our way out of Alaska and through Canada to return to the Lower 48 States. We have a few mutiple night stops on the way, so it will take us nearly a month before we cross the United States border into the state of Washington.

Our planned route today had us traveling east on the Glenn Highway following the Matanuska River for most of the way. That is until we arrived near the Matanuska Glacier which is what feeds this massive braided river. The Matanuska River runs all the way back past Palmer to where it meets up with the Knik River before emptying into the Knik Arm and finally the Cook Inlet near Anchorage.

The braided Matanuska River just outside of the town of Palmer.

Further upriver towards the Matanuska Glacier it narrows.

The Matanuska Glacier as it decends down from the mountains.

A closeup of the "toe" of the Matanuska Glacier.

Upon nearing the Eureka Summit, the highest elevation along the entire Glenn Highway at 3,332 feet, the fall colors began showing themselves everywhere. But it's still August! Granted it's barely still August, but fall colors in August ... CRAZY!!! - T

Mostly yellows, but spots of orange and red every now and then, will soon be all gone as the seasons don't last long in Alaska. Except winter that is!

All along the roadway we saw yellow and orange colored leaves on the trees.

Even the fireweed in the foreground is fading to pink from it vibrant purple of just last week.

As if not to be out done, even the mountains are giving off an array of color around here.

When we reached the small town of Meldetna is was time to turn off the Glenn Highway and travel some 17-miles along a side road to the campground at Lake Louise State Recreation Area. As we left the Glenn Highway I began to second guess whether we should attempt traveling on this road.

The first 10-miles of Lake Louise Road is very rollercoaster-like and poorly maintained.
Remarkably the last 7-miles to the State Rec Area is perfectly smooth.

We did see this pair of Trumpeter Swans on a lake along the roadside.

We arrived at the State Park campground and drove through the loop of campsites. Not seeing anything worth $20 a night we decided to travel back up Lake Louise Road and spend the night in one of the numerous roadside pullouts we passed on the way in.

The one we ended up in is only 1¼-miles from the Glenn Highway. At least in the morning we won't have to negotiate any more of the rollercoaster ride.

Plenty of room if we end up with neighbors in our FREE campsite for the night.

Not that we can see it from inside THE POD, but this is the view just over the ridge.
But if you climb the hill across the road high enough you can see it from here. ; ) - T
That I believe is the 25-mile long Tazlina Glacier.




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