Bill and Kelly are workamping at Renfro’s Lakeside Retreat for the summer. A cool place that offers both RV sites as well as cabins. We had been in contact with them and let them know we would be bringing plenty of halibut and salmon and planned to make them dinner our first night in. As luck would have it Steve and Linda were also going to be in the area and could stop by! We had met Steve and Linda for the first time on our way to Florida in the spring of 2015 as well. Their son Zach was visiting as well, we all had a great dinner and caught up on our travels since we last saw each other.
|Steve, Linda, Kelly, Bill and Zach along with Barb and I|
The next day Bill and Kelly had to work so Barb and I drove the 20 miles to Seward and explored the town. This town rivals Skagway when it comes to picturesque scenery. Everywhere you looks were rugged snow covered peaks. On our way there, we took a detour to see Exit Glacier and so that Barb could get her National Parks Passport Book stamped! We toured the visitor center and took a short walk to see the actual glacier. Along the way, there were signs with years on them which showed where the glacier was at that point in time. It’s amazing how far the glacier receded in the late 1800’s to early 1900’s. I overheard one woman say it was because of global warming. I wanted to ask her what was causing global warming between 1890 and 1930 in this remote unpopulated area.
We explored the shops in town, the brewery, the marina and even visited the Sea Life Center.
It is a great little town, if I had to knock it for one thing it is the parking. Very little free parking almost everywhere you went you had to pay $10/day for parking. We found free parking on the outer edge of town at the town park.
|This Harbor Seal kept swimming by upside down|
|This guys was lucky he was behind glass!|
|A helicopter? Someone has too much money!|
|Our site for the night with a view!|
|It was VERY noisy when all the dogs started barking at once!|
|Getting hooked up and ready to go|
|And we are off!|
|A race sled|
|Barb all ready for racing!|
We then said goodbye to Bill and Kelly and headed off to Whittier. It was a pretty drive with several glaciers along the way.
This is by far the weirdest town we have been to so far. First, the only way to get there by road is to take a 2 ½ mile tunnel. This tunnel is only about 20’ wide and only allows one way traffic at a time. If you want to go into town you line up outside the tunnel (after paying $13 roundtrip fee) and on the bottom of each hour they allow traffic into the tunnel. On the top of each hour they allow outgoing traffic. Oh did I mention that it is also a railroad tunnel too? Not sure when they allow the trains through (I think it is at night). Talk about getting the most out of a tunnel!
|The Whittier Tunnel|
|Inside the tunnel|
But wait it gets weirder! There are approximately 240 fulltime residents in Whittier and we did not see one house. Where do all these people live? Well most of them live in an old military building now renovated into housing. Over 2/3rds of the residents live in this building which is also home to the City Offices and Police Department. The remainder of the residents live in another military building.
|The main housing unit|
|They have a beautiful marina|
There is room for expansion however as there is another shell of a military building near the other one. As Kelly recently said, you could film a Walking Dead episode in that building!
A cute town, a scenic town, a quiet town, but definitely a weird town in our opinion.
Next up more fishing adventures as we return once again to the Homer/Ninilchik area to see our friends Rich and Susan and see how those Kenai River Reds are running!