Remember what I said, “Slow down and live.”  That advice does not only apply to frost heaves.

After a brief layover for lunch and breaking ice free from our wheel-wells which were so caked with thick ice that our front tires rubbed whenever we made a turn, we began our descent into the Mat-Su valley a couple of hours later and conditions rapidly improved…

But even near whiteout conditions didn’t seem to deter this bald eagle and raven from taking to the sky…

And while our neighbors were snuggled up warm and cozy in their rolling asylums, we ventured out and into the Elks Lodge to enjoy a couple of hot buttered rums and hang out on their deck overlooking a frozen Finger Lake…

All in all, it wasn’t a bad day’s work.  Next stop: Denali National Park.  Hugs, Chuck and Kalyn

Sure glad we weren’t camping in a tent!

Our campground host emerged from a nice warm house just long enough to grab our $33 for the night, throw us a map to our campsite and give us the pleasant news that we could expect another 2 inches of snowfall to grace us by morning.

We awoke the next day to discover that the expected deluge had passed us by and the road west looked just as it had the previous afternoon…

As we trekked toward Tok, our resting point for the day, the road became wetter and the trees took on a wintrier snow-flocked look…

In fact the improvement was such that my resident polar adventurer donned her parka and mukluks and waded out through the snow to grab this shot…

Not too bad:  beautiful snowcapped mountains beneath the majesty of a cloudy Alaskan Sky and clear roads as far as the eye could see or the spirit could imagine. Before long, one of the locals emerged from the forest to bid us “Welcome”…

I stayed indoors, turned on the furnace and brewed a pot of coffee.  My Bride may be from North Dakota but I’m a southern boy.

We soon arrived at the Palmer Elks lodge and joined a group of like-minded souls who had also braved the elements to experience the epitome of RV’ing insanity…

It wasn’t until we arrived at the Sourdough Campground that afternoon that we realized just what we were facing…

However, as we headed toward Glennallen, conditions soon began to deteriorate as snow encroached on our road…

Our departure from Donna, Texas, on May 1st (a warm spring day by Texas standards) concluded with our crossing of the border between Canada and Alaska on May 13th (we don’t know exactly what kind of day by Alaskan standards) after a rather fast paced traverse of the 4,043 miles (I won’t EVEN try to compute that number in kilometers, Smoots or bovines) at a total cost of $2508.91 for diesel fuel or .62 cents per mile.  And this was the sight which greeted us through the “lookin’ glass”…

  Springtime In Alaska                                                       May 17, 2013

Although this picture was taken through the windshield, as were many in the previous Update, we wanted to use it to provide a rather graphic example of what a phantom frost heave looks like through the windshield as you are travelling down the highway.  Many are marked with bright yellow signs or small red flags.  This one was not.  Our advice to anyone visiting the Great Land: slow down and live! (or, at the very least, save yourself the expense of repairing thousands of dollars in damage to the chassis of your RV, be it motorhome or trailer).  We did manage a closer unencumbered look at the Welcoming Committee, but so disgusted was he with our early arrival to his party that he simply couldn’t bear to look us in the eye…

“When it’s springtime in Alaska, it’s 40 below” is a line from the lyrics of a song that reveals a few of the intimate possibilities one may experience in arriving on the doorstep of the Arctic a week or so before she’s ready for company.

Nor was this moose deterred from darting out in front of us as she crossed the highway and safely vanished into the bramble on the other side…