Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Ultima Thule Photo Album.

I tried to whittle it down to my favorite photos from our short trip last week and this is what I ended up with. 
It's a lot, I know.
We had such a wonderful time though.  Our first real taste of summer warmth, including Tell's first mosquito bites of the year.  Although we did get new snow here at home yesterday :(
Ultima Thule is a remote, family-owned and run, fly-in lodge essentially just on the other side of the mountains from us.  It was our first time visiting there after years of wanting to.  
One of my favorite parts of being out there was being off the grid for a couple days.  It was really refreshing to be without cell phones (they don't have cell reception or a land line, only sat phones) and the computer.   
The people we were around were awesome.  So friendly, super interesting, and incredibly welcoming to our kids, which they don't get young ones out there very often.
The reason we went out there was for a Geo-Caching event that they do with bush planes.  Each plane has a team of one pilot and one "spotter".  On the first day each team is given six hard-boiled eggs and six hours to go hide them within a 25-mile radius, the idea being to find interesting places to explore and land the airplanes.  At the end of the day they compile a spreadsheet with the GPS location of all the eggs.  The next day they are given seven hours to go out and locate as many of the other teams' eggs as possible.  They have to land in order to identify actually locate the egg and identify a unique code written on the egg.  It's a super cool event and both Bry and Johnny really enjoyed it.  

Jo and I spent both days at the lodge with the kids exploring the grounds and area.  Pretty much we enjoyed the sunshine, being outside, watching the kids throw rocks, and no housework.  Perfect.

So thankful the weather cooperated and everything worked out.  I start to get real selfish of these last few days in May for family time ... Oh, and did I mention that Bry's team won?  :) 

:: kids and I in the back of the Cub on the way out.  Cozy :) ::

:: Tell testing out the controls ... literally.  He pushed and pulled everything within reach.  Turkey. ::

:: A couple photos Bry took while out hiding eggs.  Some incredible places. ::

:: Out of order, but Ever in the front seat with Papa on the flight home. Look at that scenery. ::
:: Enjoying the view and sun before Papa headed out to hide eggs. ::

:: Down the hill to the airstrip to send their Papa's off. ::

:: Bry's partner, Kevin, an avid ice climber, showing the kids his gear.  They get serious about hiding these eggs :)  A couple teams even headed out with skis too. ::

:: Jo and I took the kids down to check out the Chitina River and hunt for rocks. ::

:: No running water yet, things were still frozen up.  This was the incredible, although simple, bath house/sauna.  One pot of hot, one bucket of cold, a pot to scoop it with, and a sink to hold it in.  I'd like a replica of this little retreat at my place. ::

:: The cozy cabin we shared. ::

:: Cousins. Grass. Time. ::

:: Bare feet, super heroes, and trucks. A little one's summer plan? ::

:: Teams swapping stories and results on the return. ::

:: A full airstrip. ::

:: The kids loved this musk ox rug. So did I ; )  Who's scarier? ::

:: My Tell ::

:: Jo and I getting on the other side of the cameras ;) ::

:: Ever said she saw "A hundred sheep!" on the way home. ::

:: Interesting spring remnants of summer waterfall/winter ice. ::

:: One of Alaska's many beautiful braided rivers. ::

:: Castle Mountain.  My photos did these mountains no justice.  Breathtaking.... ::


  1. Great pictures Jack!! Such a beautiful place and looks like you all had a lot of fun. : )