Strong like ox, cold like Regina

I don’t know if it’s because I was in the mountains or because it’s been cloudy for days, but summer seems to have taken a vacation of its own. The temperature is hovering around 15°C during the day and I wake up with frozen snot during the night. Let’s hope this is only temporary, because I still have a long way to go before I’m back in the south.

Besides the weather, the trip from Palmer to Glenallen was surprisingly uneventful. Individually, some of the mountain passes were the toughest I’ve ever done, but the range as a whole wasn’t all that strenuous. I eat oatmeal – mountains don’t. Enough said.

Mike on Bike sitting on a hill in front of mountains and the Matanuska River in Alaska.

Following the Matanuska River through the mountains

On the second day after leaving Palmer, I came upon a huge area of road construction. Traffic was backed up for about a mile and people were hanging out of their windows, wandering the ditches smoking and staring at the Nebraska license plates in front of them. It wasn’t exactly one of the moments that get captured for the tourist brochures.

I don’t like waiting and I really don’t like lines, so I skipped into the opposite lane and blasted straight to the front of the queue. The flag lady didn’t mind, though she insisted I get a ride through the construction zone. So now, if anyone asks, I will say I rode my bike through Alaska except for five miles.

That night, I camped right beside the Matanuska Glacier. Apparently, some of the locals were charging $15 for tourists to walk on the glacier, which I thought was terribly funny. I’ve spent half my life trudging through snow and ice – I’m not paying a dime to do it in somebody else’s backyard.

The next day was a strange tapestry of hills, wind and Snickers bars. I devoured them all and ended the evening in the hamlet of Tazlina, camping beside a slough called Buffalo Lake. My frozen toes woke me up before seven and I took off for Glenallen shortly after.

I’m wearing my wool sweater at the Copper Valley Library now, and if the weather doesn’t smarten up and start shining, this is where I’ll spend the rest of my day. It’s warm and there are books. Good enough for me.

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6 responses to “Strong like ox, cold like Regina

  1. Jeff and I were talking the other day and we both agreed that we are jealous of your adventure, but in the inspirational kinda way. I am happy to have peddeled so many miles along side you… from late night lightning fast rips to the rail bridge, to dog day afternoons on our way to Central Park. Push Those Pedals Strong Brother!

    Take Care,
    Shawn O

    ps. Beware the “Danger Zone”… you might end up ass over tea kettle with a back full o’ coffee .

  2. Hey Mike!

    This is Heidi from Travelodge. (Paul’s gf, Lauren’s friend, awesome person in general.) I just got to your blog, and from the looks of it — it looks great!

    Life has been great for me. Went to Victoria and back. Getting TESL certified, taking summer classes, working, and looking forward to the fall (and August 22nd…the ‘big’ wedding day!)

    Have a great ride. =)

    -Heidi

  3. got your postcard today, happy to hear from you my friend. i can’t wait to hear more about it,

    love and miss you

    kris

  4. Shawn O speaks truth! That danger zone is a real killa!
    keep typin’ and ridin’ my old Angle…
    A toast to the the Angles, Derailleurs, and Boleserians!!!!
    Minky too
    M

  5. Mike you’re having an adventure to be envious of. I can’t believe the things I’m reading and the people you are meeting. It’s wonderful. You should write a book about it when you’re all done.

    Have fun and stay safe. Keep on truckin’.

    Robbi

  6. Just came home to the surprise of an Alaskan postcard, it made my day.

    How I miss you! Take care and stay safe.

    -AD

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