The middle of the summer is upon us at EarthSong Lodge. The green is here, something we never get tired of seeing after a long white winter. After an uncomfortable start to wildfire season, where Alaska ended up receiving manpower and equipment from out of state/country, we have settled down a bit. Smoke from the fires near and far are long gone, and we are enjoying the last of the early summer warm days before we get into our mostly cloudy and sprinkly days of July and August. Wildflowers are out everywhere, and the cloudberries should be appearing on our tundra at any moment.
Guests have the pleasure of my (Jon's) cooking skills. So you can enjoy that without having to come back in the winter and go dog sledding with us! We've added a few new items to the popular regular dishes we serve: Ginger-Scallion Udon with Shrimp and Veggies; Red Curry Salmon; Lime-Peanut Noodles with Shrimp and Veggies...these join our popular Spaghetti and Meatballs (Jon takes great pride in his sauce!), Pesto, and Thai Panang Chicken. Karin has taken over baking, and a few days ago guests had the choice of homemade cherry, peach, or apple pie, along with peanut butter brownies and chocolate cookies with white chocolate chips. And don't forget our K-Bay Coffee, best in the west.
Although it's summer, winter and dog sledding aren't too far away for planning. We already have booked three overnight trips, and look forward to a busy season. Our pups are growing fast, with Basheer about twice the size of his little sister Dax. Kira should be re-named "Tigger", since it seems like she has springs on her feet! All dogs are doing well, even Karin's little white fluffball Bella. Our dog handler from last season, J.J., stops by at the coffeehouse occassionally, when he is not driving park shuttle bus, and we are happy he still plans on returning next winter.
We've been seeing a steady stream of "pilgrims" heading out the Stampede Trail to the Bus on the Sushana River...the bus from "Into the Wild". A few days ago it was a group of five motorcyclists up from Canada, and yesterday it was two from Switzerland. The biker group came out last night, and had a very close call at the river crossing at the Teklanika. Water is very high, and they were lucky. Hopefully others will be so lucky, or have good common sense. Last week a supercub plane with the Alaska State Troopers landed on our road in front of the lodge. They were looking for a fellow from Italy, overdue from hiking out the Stampede Trail. He ended up tagging along with another group coming back from the bus. My advice to those future Bus hikers, go in early September or come back in the winter and sled out with me!
Yesterday Karin and I went out to the Savage River at Mile 15 on the Park Road with our daughter Sera and her boyfriend Jesse, up for the holiday from Anchorage. We did a mile hike down the canyon, and had a group of Dall Sheep rams walk right by us. A great place to hike, with flowers and scenery, made all the more spectacular when you get a wildlife sighting like that. If you are coming up, plan on making time to go down the Savage Canyon Trail.
Our lodge is fairly busy this summer. More people are visiting Alaska this summer at the last minute, so if you are considering that, come and stay with us.