Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Fishing in Alaska and the Classroom


OK, so put the coolers and luggage here…
in front of the scale so’s I can get that weight.


Millie will get your weights.


No lying or fudging...got that..ha!
’cause you might make us hit a few trees...hmmm?


Ted was a funny guy or at least he tried to be.

We were in a hangar at the far end of the regular airport.
It took five or more hours to get here and now we were about to board a plane that fit luggage and 11 people if you count the pilot and the seat next to him.




When we sat-he sized us up and had us trade seats to shift the weight around...either that or he was just messing with us.


Nah, he wasn’t talkative. Didn’t smile and he sure didn’t really interact with us…
no problem just fly the plane and get us there.

Boy did he miss his chance to be funny...I mean he was tall and had to kneel down inside the plane to talk to us about the seat belts and the flotation devices…(smile...get it? funny)
What no drink service? No bathroom, either?



I have flown lots of places but I’m not sure that ...ok. I’m positive that I have never, ever flown over- nothing- absolutely nothing that was man made...for the next two hours the plane flew just above mountain tops and over rivers, streams and snow and ...wow!


Beautiful...no words just wow…2 or more hours of wow…


Soon we landed at a small airport on a lake.


Check out this sign that is located in the shed where they place your luggage.

Safety Around Bears
My favorite parts of this sign-
Bears may bluff charge and come very close to you. Hold your ground. and If a bear touches you, surrender. Fall to the ground and play dead.

Hmm.This got me thinking about where we were going. You know the idea that the exhibits might eat you? Know what movie that is from?

Hey, Dad...focus you were talking about the lake...

sorry ...
After a little bit of sitting and looking and laughing about the adventure that was on its way…
Oh, yea and using the last real bathroom with actual plumbing...
It was time to be slip into a van for a short trip to the lake…


The van driver helped us unload our stuff on the gravel shore…
Beautiful water with just a little bit of a breeze and nice low 60s crispy air..
Sun and in the distance mountains…


Then there was the low rumble a motor - in the air..just over ...over there..yea…
The float plane approached over the horizon then dipped out of sight and suddenly it was back in front of us as it barreled across the top of the lake--touching-lightly bouncing and then gliding on top of the water..it was a surreal ice skater...arriving to mid-ice to receive the roar of the crowd...ok- so there wasn’t any ice but cool…




The plane made its way to the shore and out popped the pilot to load our stuff in the back of the plane and in the pontoons.


There were 9 of us so only 4 could leave on the first plane…


The rest of us waited for the next one to arrive…


Take off from that lake was amazing...the plane maneuvers into position-slowly and then the pilot guns the engine ...spray hits the windows...we are heading for the treeline...wait..doesn’t the water end there? Hey, you think you might want to go a little faster? Hmmm? I mean those trees are getting closer and we aren’t off the...Wow!!!


Off the water...straight at the trees - up and over...up, up and away….move over Superman!!!




Did you ever see that movie about the island where there are these crazy scientists who bring dinosaurs back to life? Well, I have many times and I swear that as we traveled deeper into the back-country that we were going to see dinosaurs.


Dad there aren’t any dinosaurs...yeah but it sure looks like…
Dad get back to the story...ok






These planes flew lower...and we saw water, plants, trees, eagles-bald eagles, a family of bears...was that a caribou?


Then a river appears and we descend over the trees and down to the water….smooth as glass...what a landing…


Straight ahead are small boats with guys dressed in fishing waders...waiting for us...cool…



Dorothy you ain’t in Kansas anymore…
Ok so I'm not Dorothy and I'm not from Kansas and I sure butchered that reference to an old movie but ...time for a WOW!!!


Hi...I’m, Jason, Mark, Evan,Neal... let’s go to the camp!




We loaded the boats,  motored up river to John and the fishing camp on the hill…





The most amazing trip I have ever taken...Fishing in the back-country of Alaska was about to begin…


So stay tuned and next time when the story continues let’s talk tents, outhouses, wild blueberries, the river, bald eagles, bear signs, fish, eating fish, big fish, shore lunches, casting, drifting, and fly fishing, boats and no cars, no buildings, no other people.


Listen...its nature calling...and wait it doesn’t really get dark...more cool...

Start thinking about how you could use stories of trips that you have taken or could even plan school related trips to bring engagement and excitement to your classroom.

More about my trip soon.