Your love has lifted me higher

We woke up early, in case the roads were a repeat of yesterday. And because we had a ferry to catch in Haines at 5 p.m. We had great road all the way to Haines Junction. It was a bit nippy, but the BMW gear kept me warm. We pulled into the Village Bakery to have a hot cup of coffee.

Image of a view of the mountains surrounded by lots of water

View from the plywood cabin (now you know why sleeping in a shed without water is okay).

While waiting in line to get coffee, the woman standing next to me told me that I should try the strudel. She said she and her husband bought some and it was amazing. I said, why not! I got a piece for the road. I paid for our coffee and waited for our order. When I was done, I looked around and saw there was nowhere to sit. I noted the strudel lady was sitting with her husband at a table with two extra chairs and asked if she minded if we joined them. We chatted for a while. They were bikers (although we didn’t see their bikes nor were they dressed in bike attire). They talked about everywhere in Alaska they had just traveled.

Just before I left Anchorage, my boss, John, told me there were a group of riders that had over-nighted with them. John had tried to arrange a dinner with them, since he knew Michael and I were doing the Dalton highway in a couple of weeks and I would enjoy a current report. It didn’t work out because I was coming to Sitka, and the other riders were moving on. It turns out these were the folks. We discovered this quite by accident during our chat. For those of you not from Alaska, this is a pretty amazing coincidence. Haines Junction is hundreds of miles and this tiny little coffee shop is hidden around a corner or two. We laughed and exchanged numbers. They invited me to stay with them in San Diego and give me the skinny on Baja and Copper Canyon, Mexico. It turns out they know Mexico like the back of their hand. Yay!

Image of two people (Walt and Tammy) sitting at a table eating

Walt and Tammy – new friends from the road

Galena (a.k.a Jaz) and I hit the road. It got a little cooler and started to rain. The elevation increased on the Haines Highway. We took our time for photo ops along the way. Galena is so funny, I do love traveling with her! We saw swans, the Chilkat River, a nice rusty bridge, the Last Call (someone’s monument to phone booths), a forgotten cemetery, AND the hammer museum.

Image of the Chilkat River

Chilkat River

Image of an old single lane bridge over the Chilkat River

Old single lane bridge

Image of phone booths in the middle of nowhere with lots of flags, flowers, and a sign reading, "Last Call 25 miles Haines, Alaska"

Someone is collecting phone booths and phones in the woods north of Haines. No explanation, not a house, just a random expression.

Image of a barbie doll tied to a post

Another random expression I found hanging in the woods outside of Haines

Image of Jaz scrambling around in the bushes of an overgrown cemetery

Forgotten cemetery. Jaz poking around the bush looking for a picture.

Image of Judy leaning against a very large hammer

Me, swinging a really big hammer at the Hammer Museum. Unfortunately it was closed. Maybe on the way back it will be open.

Haines is not like other gifts shop in Alaska, so the store front signs proclaimed. This is in reference to the fact that many gift shops in cruise ship towns are not locally owned. We wandered in and out of shops all day. We noticed the big seller to the cruise ship crowd is “bear skat” and “moose droll” fudge. It is almost as popular as “moose nugget” jewelry. I’m still not sure why tourists are infatuated with the bodily functions of wildlife. In my wanderings, one of my favorite things to do is read the local bulletin boards in small towns. Haines did not let me down:

Image of a sign reading, "We are NOT like Skagway, Juneau, and Ketchikan. Haines is now OWNED by the cruise lines. We get one large ship docking a week. Please help support our Town"
Image of a poster with a chihuahua wearing a superhero costume saying, "They call me Saint Lucha"

Jaz is now calling herself “Saint Lucha”

Jaz has adopted a new name. “They call me Saint Lucha,” is something I have been hearing now.

We explored all the roads Haines had to offer including the dead end at Chilkoot Lake which was amazing and beautiful. We stopped for roadside French press ala jetboil coffee, and enjoyed the view.

Our short stay in Haines ended up at the ferry terminal. We boarded the ferry and hung out in the bar for hours listening to classics like, “Your Love Has Lifted Me Higher” by Rita Coolidge. The ferry, built in the 70s, not only had no outlets for charging devices, but was stuck in a music rut playing old music.

It was kinda nice.

Image of a Ferry to Juneau

Ferry to Juneau

Image of Jaz sitting in front of a laptop at a table at a bar

Our headquarters on the boat: the bar (only because no small children were running up and down the hallway screaming).

Knowing where not to go
About Maya

My name is Maya, and I wander.

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