Favorite Travel Quotes

"Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts."
-- Mark Twain
Innocents Abroad

"Stop worrying about the potholes in the road and celebrate the journey." -- Fitzhugh Mullan

"A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving." -- Lao Tzu

Regrouping At Delta Junction, A Terminus of the Alaska Highway

©Bert Gildart: It doesn’t take 2 ½ weeks to drive from Bigfork, Montana, to the official end of the Alaskan Highway (we once made it in 3 ½ days) at Delta Junction, but that’s the amount of time we took. Part of every trip is a photo outing. As well, we’ve been trying to gather material for various stories, so we dallied.


We know each of the 28 species of mosquitoes in Alaska is huge, and this cast at Delta Junction is an exact replica. Honest!

Though most people drive on to Fairbanks, Delta Junction is where the U.S. Army officially ceased its construction. The first time we passed through this small town was in 1991, right after we married, and we both recall having met a young man at the Delta Visitor Center who had cycled all the way from South America. That memory has stuck with us.


A few minutes ago, we started to call relatives living on the East Coast. Here at 8 p.m. it is completely light and so for a second or two, we forgot that although it may seem early, their time it is, in fact, midnight. Though we are not quite to the Arctic Circle (that’s just a little beyond Fairbanks), still, we have 24 hours of daylight, and almost 24 hours of COMPLETE SUNLIGHT. But not quite.


Fireweed is associated with disturbed areas, such as fire, and fireweed in Alaska grows in so many places, in this case on route to Chicken, AK.

Here, the sun dips below the horizon for several hours leaving us with what is known as Civil Twilight. That’s enough light (my definition) to read a book outside without straining your eyes.

Officially, the sun will set at 12: 21 and will rise at 3:28. Today, in New York, sunrise is 5:32; sunset 8:29.

To refresh, the Arctic Circle is that imaginary line that circles the earth and represents that point at which the sun completely dips below the horizon; and one day when the sun never rises above the horizon. Those events occur on the first day of summer and the first day of winter.

As one travels above that imaginary line, the extremes become greater and greater. At Arctic Village (several hundred miles above the Arctic Circle), where we spent a number of summers, teaching — and later gathering material for stories and a children’s book — the sun circled high in the sky for weeks on end, never touching the horizon.


Tomorrow, unless something diverts us, we’ll travel the last 100 miles to Fairbanks. Knock on wood we’ve sustained no damage to our Airstream, though we did talk to one Airstream owner who had trouble with rocks hitting the petcock draining water from his reserve water-holding tank.

I had the same problem with an earlier Airstream and called the factory and recommended they add a tiny shield to future Airstreams. Apparently they haven’t done so, though I had one installed on both our first Airstream and on our current one.

We’ve had no problems since.



*Holy S—, When no Other Worlds Suffice


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