An absolutely gorgeous weekend in Portage Valley.

We headed down to one of our favorite campgrounds, Williwaw, in the Portage Valley on Thursday night for a weekend of hiking, biking and kayaking. The weather was Alaska at its best.

A different landscape crew in for a trim.

This is not the Mom and baby that we thought the bear got. We’ve seen this pair around the neighborhood as well. Mom doesn’t have the distinctive scars on her left front leg. They stayed for awhile and did a nice trim job on the shrubs next to the house.

Very happy to see these two again!

We thought we had lost this moose calf to a bear in early June. Several weeks ago I thought I might have caught a glimpse of them, but they were too far away to be positive it was them. The Mama Moose has some distinctive scars on her left front leg. Today while having breakfast we saw movement in the front yard, and sure enough, it was them! They trimmed the shrubs for a bit—just long enough to get a good look at Mama and verify that it was her with a healthy calf. They didn’t stay long this visit, but it sure made our day.

Denali in July. Caribou, bears and fireweed.

We’re back from 5 days at our favorite place on earth, Denali National Park. We camped at the Teklanika campground and as usual used the shuttle buses to access the park road where we mountain biked or hiked. Rain and drizzle the first couple of days, but then it cleared up—except for the noticeable wildfire smoke which left a definite blue haze when skies cleared . The weather in the Park has been very hot and smoky this summer with temperatures far above normal. One thing that was immediately apparent was the profusion of fireweed. In all the years we’ve been visiting Denali, we’ve never seen anything like it.

Not any really close bear photos this trip, but lots of very close caribou—in fact I got to play chicken with a big bull caribou while on my bike!

As usual, way too many pictures. Come along for the ride!