Anchored down in Anchorage

I arrived in Anchorage late on Christmas Eve night. In fact, with the three hour gain, my body time was Christmas. It had been almost four years since last coming home, but walking into the house I'd first moved into before the 6th grade felt almost routine.

Christmas day was one of the best ever. Very few presents - I bought the wine for dinner, we all got socks, but Mom bought a Wii for the house, and I found out my brother had quit smoking! An old family friend came over to eat with us, and we had lots of good wine over prime rib and uproarious conversation, before heading downstairs to play a few hours of Wii tennis and bowling.

The backyard:

Today Mom and I went skiing on the truly world-class network of urban trails that Anchorage residents enjoy. My stepdad's wooden skis, handmade in Norway, are probably older than me but with the appropriate wax applied, they glide along just as well as the high-end composite models.

Madison Way at high noon in December - that's looking straight north (the sun never really gets above the southern horizon this time of year):

Just a right and a left turn and three-quarters of mile from the house is the access point to Chester Creek Trail:

One of the many underpasses on the ski trails in Anchorage:

We stopped at West Chester Lagoon, near the head of the Coastal Trail, and watched the ice skaters:

Long story short? Keep your distance:

A view of Cook Inlet and Mt. Susitna (Sleeping Lady) from the Anchorage Coastal Trail:

Informational sign at Earthquake Park, where the entire neighborhood of Turnagain Heights slid into Cook Inlet during the March 27, 1964 Earthquake. At 9.2 on the Richter Scale, it was the largest seismic event ever recorded in North America:

At Earthquake Park:

Downtown Anchorage from the Coastal Trail:

Needs no further explanation:

Three hours and 11.5 miles, it was a great workout. We are about to enjoy some leftovers from last night - I am starving - and then my brother and I are headed downtown to meet up with some high school friends we've not seeing in quite a long time over some beers.

Until tomorrow...


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