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August 17, 1998

Ok, so I took a vacation from the journal.  Sue me!  I guess I could fill you in on some interesting things I left out about Anadyr (like doing customs in a van while it was raining, so they could get us out of there), (like the engine sputtering on the auto fuel in the ferry tank) or Nome, (having to file on the prop blade so we could go on) or Fairbanks (developing ice and not being able to maintain our altitude in a spot where you are not in radio contact), but why bore you.  From the 12th to the 16th we stayed with a friend )stan) in Denali, flew to Anchorage, (after the removal of the ferry tank in Fairbanks), picked up Leigh Grider, (she came to play with us for a few days in Alaska).   We flew to Lake Clark to see friends of mine (Willie Nelson and his wife Mary Ann). No not the "On The Road Again, Willie!".  When we went to King Salmon.   We saw lots of Bears, Caribou, and Moose.  We also flew around Mt. McKinley.   Now, we have flown a lot of places and when I rate them, Alaska gets first place.   BEAUTIFUL.  I want to get a job flying in Alaska.   Agee, can I work for you in the winter and go to Alaska in the summer?  (surely, we can work something out!)  After some media stuff out at Merrill field in Anchorage, we headed out of Alaska.  Coastal route stinks, so we are trying an interior route.  Last year we did the AlCan highway and the coastal route.  This year, we are trying the "trench".  After Northway, we headed for Whitehorse, Yukon.  By the time we got to Haines Junction, we were encountering the forest fires and then severe turbulence. (Not moderate!)  Everything loose in the airplane was put up.  We were doing some involuntary aerobatic maneuvers at this point.  We came into Whitehorse between all the fire bombers.  We had a 25 knot crosswind and the tower kept saying "If it's too much, climb out straight ahead."  Firebombers were loading up on the good runway; I wanted the tower guy to shut up but he told me winds all the way to touch down.  It definitely helps being raised a crop dusters daughter.   Uneventful landing and a compliment from the tower.  After checking weather, we learned severe turbulence and wind shear was in our path.  We elected to overnight here.  I promised Nikki that I wouldn't maker her fly in the bumps if she didn't make me stay at the Airport Chalet.  (Been there, done that, in Whitehorse)  So we stayed at the Airline Inn.  First motel I have ever stayed at that you checked in at the all night convenience store and went to the back to find the room. 

 

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