20 Aug 2006 Sunday

Yes, it’s still raining.  The locals have said this is the wettestsummer they’ve seen in twenty years.  It’s been raining in Talkeetna for aweek and a half straight.  We’re going to clean up and try to get out ofhere today.  For a state much larger than Texas, Alaska has very fewroads, main thoroughfares to a  different part of the state.  Andthere are LOTS of streams and rivers.  I looked on a map to see whichbridge may be out and there are dozens of stream crossings between Talkeetna andDenali.  From what we’ve seen with the local flooding, any of them couldcause problems.  

We got out of the Mat-Su Valley with a minimum of road closures.  We sawone lane closed at Willow Creek and several people were watching thebridges.  And it’s still raining.  We backtracked where we had justbeen, past the Musk Ox Farm and overlooks where we got some nice mountain photos(in the  few minutes it wasn’t raining).  We were down to one lane asthey were cleaning up some mudslide damage, trying to keep the main arteryopen.  One huge rock fell after the huge truck went by to shovel the debrisout of the road and traffic wasdodging the rock as best as they could.  It was probably the size of a deskchair!  

We got to Glennallen and found lots ofcars and RVs gassing up and in line for the restrooms.  The clerk theresaid this was the busiest she’s been all summer.  People from Fairbanksthat have come south to Anchorage can’t get back the way they came, they have todrive around the long way to get back.  Add to that people who can’t getthru (like us) and have to get out this way.  We saw an Anchorage newspaperand the photo on the front page was one of the bridges that were out (we foundout two bridges along the road were damaged and closed).  I think one ofthe bridges was at Troublesome Creek (aptly named) that washed out.  It was animpressive amount of damage, all four lanes across had fallen!  Firstreports said the bridge may be out two weeks or more.

We stopped at Tok Junction at a covered picnic area and battled a squirrelfor our dinner.  We finally won.  Teeny-tiny squirrel, I guess theydon’t get very big here.  We drove a little further after dinner and founda dirt road to camp on.   We guessed it was public land, all the signswere down because of construction.  At least we didn’t see any “No Trespassing/Private Property” signs.  

As we crawled into the back of the truck, we found that our truck cap hasbeen leaking.  Not to bad and to be honest, we’ve never been in this muchrain before.  However, my pillow and some clothes were wet and Andrew had acouple of things on his side that were wet.  It’s not so bad to keep usfrom camping, but we’ll be using some trash bags tomorrow.

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