I set my alarm this morning for 7am so that I could go bike riding and still get back in time to take a nap before my all nighter flight back to H-Town. When the alarm went off I forced myself out of bed, as I am NOT a morning person, but continually reminded myself that it would all be worth it when I was riding the trail, taking pictures and possibly even seeing a moose!! So I continued on having my coffee..I made myself a sandwich.no, I am not camping and Yes I have the amenities of a restaurant available but I thought I would use the resources I brought with me. The bread had been in my bag awhile and was making the sandwich taste moldy so I took it off.some of the mustard stayed behind and made the breadless sandwich better, I guessI dont know.
I left the hotel and arrived at the bike shop by 8:30am..the bike shop owner asked if I wanted to rent a bike and I said YESand he said I looked nicely dressed to be bike riding. I told him that riding a bike in Alaska was no reason to be unfashionable....still I took him up on his offer to trade in my jeans for a pair of loaner shorts. They must have made me look pretty official b/c while on the trail, despite my lipstick and rock star sunglasses one guy asked me if I was with the Audubon...he was old though maybe he couldnt see very well....or maybe the granola bar in my pocket helped me look more granola.
From the start it was incredible.......the trail went along the bay? Or the ocean...I dont know....it was water and it was gorgeous...........mountains in the background....and also through the forest. The water was so clear and gorgeous that at one point I looked down through some trees and the reflection from the water looked so clear for a second I thought it was the sky....it was confusing and I thought maybe I ate more of the moldy bread than I should have.
My first encounter with wildlife was a fox..he was trotting towards me and took me by surprise. By the time I figured out how cool it was I didnt have time to get a picture and apparently "Hey You" doesnt faze them to turn around and pose for a picture.....sigh....oh well. I was fairly deep in the woods and felt excitement at my opportunity to see MOOSE!!!
There are certain key points in our lives that we just know must happen before we die and seeing a moose has been one of mine. These creatures have eluded me during visits to Colorado, Halifax, Canada and my last 2 visits to Alaska....all key times to catch a sighting. Of course the last time I came to Alaska I had a really cool crew and we stayed out drinking til 3am and nature was not our first priority the next day.
Anyway, the moment finally came.....my First Moose Sighting!!!! I stopped immediately to take pictures. I was getting closer and closer....I resisted the urge for petting the moose b/c she really started to look irritated and hear that moose can be pretty mean and fast....I looked at my bike with its little kick stand felt certain that a high speed chase would not end in my favor. So anyway, I took the best pictures that I could but she wouldnt stop moving around and eating and my camera kinda sucks after it was dropped at a concert so most of the pictures came out blurry. I did take some video though....which can be viewed, in retrospect I should have taken longer footage but at the time I questioned how long I would watch a moose eat.
After the excitement of the moose sighting I had a huge smile on my face but there was still so much to see.....every turn there was something amazing to see
The full bike trail was 18 miles..my only complaint was that the 17th mile was up hill and nobody had warned me of that....had I known I may have eaten that granola bar that had been in my pocket in preparation, but every mile was worth it because in the last mile I saw a male moose with the big antlers and got some even better pictures of him.
Nature and I had been meaning to get together and today was a good day for it.