Copper Whale Inn in downtown Anchorage with one of my colleagues, Diane. She's become a regular at this B&B, and I liked it as well. It's much more personal than a business hotel (although unlike many B&Bs, we had our own private bathrooms), and we had amazing views of Cook Inlet out our windows. I also liked its proximity to restaurants downtown. Apparently, the building is one of the few structures to survive the 1964 earthquake.
On Tuesday afternoon/evening when it snowed, I decided that I needed to walk to the restaurant downtown after all the heavy eating we'd been doing. It wasn't a pleasant walk because I wasn't very well equipped for the weather, and it was also difficult to cross the street at times because of all the standing water from the snow melt. But I stopped at this lovely artists' cooperative on the way. Anchorage has some wonderful galleries.
On my last evening in Alaska, we drove out to Girdwood along the Turnagain Arm. We weren't sure whether we would brave it, because the snow from the evening before had been frozen over in the morning, and we Oregon/Washington travelers are not very intrepid in the snow and ice. However, it had warmed up sufficiently in the afternoon to lead us to believe it would be safe enough. Girdwood is 30 miles away from Anchorage.
I have made this drive several times over the past 12 years, but I have never seen such majestic scenery. The entire drive along Cook Inlet is rimmed on either side by huge mountains, one after another, and this week they were beautifully blanketed in snow. We tried to ignore the signs that warned of avalanches and falling rocks and concentrated instead on the beautiful scenery. Dall sheep apparently cavort on the hills, but I've never seen any, and I've also never been lucky enough to see any Beluga whales in the water (even though I try to lure them with my version of "Baby Beluga"!). This website has extensive photos of this wonderful drive.
As is the case with all scenery, photographs rarely capture its splendor. And unfortunately, I didn't have my proper camera with me, but you can see a tiny glimpse of our view via my cell phone camera photos:
To top off the trip, I was lucky to be upgraded to First Class on the flight home (because of being an Alaska Air MVP), and the views over the mountains were absolutely stunning. I have always loved that flight, but yesterday was particularly spectacular. I have to say that flying over the Northwest for work has given me a keener appreciation of our beautiful region of the world! Looking out the window, I saw rows upon rows upon rows of snowy mountain peaks...as far as the eye could see. Amazing! These photos give you a tiny glimpse of what I saw.