Yukon Territory

Nabesna Road, Alaska

23 August 2010 - Monday

We enjoyed a great evening and slept well even though it rained through the night.

Continuing south along the Nabesna Road the road surface became rough gravel. A grader was maintaining the road and there were numerous hunters out as well.

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
View westward from the Kettle Lake campsite at Mile 16.5 - N62 35.069 W143 34.014

There are numerous places to pull-off driving towards Twin Lakes. The ranger at the park entrance told us the campground at Twin Lakes was closed as it was under construction. So we stopped to check out a roadside camping spot by the lake. 

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
View at Twin Lake from the roadside boondock spot at Mile 27.5 - N62 31.835 W143 15.844

A park employee stopped and told us to go to the campground and enjoy its amenities. We explained that we'd been told there was no camping there. He advised that the campground was incomplete but no construction was ongoing. He reiterated that we should park there. So we left our roadside spot and pulled into the Twin Lakes recreation site. Found a good spot to leave the fifth wheel, packed a lunch, and headed out with the truck. 

The skies were sunny with big cloud banks moving through. It made for interesting lighting.

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Looking south west from near Mile 32 - N62 30.776 W143 10.523

The colours on the mountains were striking. And the rocky edges were interesting!

View from Nabesna Road in Alaska
Close-up view of the rock-faced mountains to the west of Nabesna Road

The mountain below was an amazing red colour. It seemed to be the rock rather than the fauna. 

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Colourful mountain viewed from Nabesna Road - N62 27.645 W143 06.010

Despite the odd lighting, I was loving the photo opportunities through this area!

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Mountain view to the west - N62 27.640 W143 06.007

Towards the end of the road, the skies clouded over. 

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
"Maintenance" must not include keeping the signs upright! - N62 24.233 W142 59.925

We passed by numerous homes, a B&B, and a handful of bush planes. Then reached a sign indicating the road to the historical mine was private with no trespassing. We turned around.

Driving back through "town", I took pictures of the planes from the truck window. I knew my
former-Alaska-pilot friend Joe would appreciate the diversion from the scenery usually displayed here!  Joe provided the info about each of these aircraft -- an interesting mix!

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
This aircraft is a 1968 Piper PA-18-150

See the airfield on Google Maps at N62 23.878 W142 59.709.

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
A 1951 four-seater Piper PA-18-125 Super Cub, a.k.a. Hulk

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Hmmmm - listed as an Ellis Wendell Kirk Workhorse with a manufacture date of 2007

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
1946 PA-12

Back near where the State road maintenance ended, there was a nice spot for our lunch break.

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Looking north from our lunch stop near the end of Nabesna Road - N62 24.354 W142 59.899

The peaks surrounding our rest spot were amazing! Even with the misty haze that had settled in, the craggy features created a great lunchroom!

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Peaks to the west viewed from our lunch stop

View from Nabesna Road in Alaska
Looking towards the southwest from our lunch stop

View from Nabesna Road in Alaska
Far in the distance to the east were the snow covered Wrangell Mountains, viewed from our lunch stop

Then back on the road headed north to return to our campsite at Twin Lakes.

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
View from Mile 35 near the Jack Creek Rest Area

The blue skies returned and the fall colours were highlighted brilliantly.

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Looking north near Mile 33.5 on Nabesna Road - N62 29.279 W143 07.908

Nabesna Road is dirt in some places and gravel in others. 

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Near Mile 33 on Nabesna Road - N62 29.434 W143 08.498

South of the Sportsman Lodge, a creek runs across the road. The roadbed was soft but passable when we were there. I was glad we were not towing the trailer!

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Trail Creek Crossing near Mile 29 on Nabesna Road - N62 31.278 W143 12.968 

Back at the Twin Lakes recreation site we settled in for the evening. 

The parks official who told us we could overnight at the campground came back to let us know he was closing the gate. The decision had been made to close the campground. There was concern that ATV/quad riders would tear up the new gravel base in the campground and destroy the work already completed. We offered to leave but he said we were okay and asked that we let ourselves out in the morning and close the gate when we left. So we had our own little private campground! 

On Nabesna Road in Alaska
Campsite at Twin Lakes on Nabesna Road - N62 31.785 W143 15.479

Steve went fishing. By 9:30 p.m. he hadn't returned so I headed to the lake to check. Took my camera with me as there was still some light in the sky.

At Twin Lake on Nabesna Road in Alaska
Steve coming to shore with his kayak as the sun set on Twin Lakes

Steve caught some grayling. I continued to take pictures of the setting sun. 

At Twin Lake on Nabesna Road in Alaska
Sun setting over Twin Lakes

The sun hit the tree tops and mountains, giving both red highlights.
With creative use of ISO640 and 1/80 second shutter speed, I was able to capture a fair bit of detail.

At Twin Lake on Nabesna Road in Alaska
Looking towards the east from Twin Lakes as the sunset

We had a very nice evening. The area was peaceful.  

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