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  • Writer's pictureRobert Gidley

The End of the Road

Aug 9, 2022 (Tue)

12:15 pm Tok, AK

We’re showered, gassed up, Harvey has done his business and we’re ready to hit the road!

12:30 pm Tok, AK

But wait—there’s a craft store/Thrift Shop at the edge of town! We have to stop there!

According to our calculations, this is the northernmost Thrift Shop that Gini has ever visited. She bought a coat hanger (which was for Robert, who brought six shirts and five coat hangers).

Also, Robert got an earring and some jelly (“Fireweed jelly! I’ll bet it burns the mouth!” exclaims Robert, who declined to taste test it—“It’ll be a surprise!”).

2:00 pm North of Tok, AK

Boy, there sure isn’t much north of Tok, AK. Just miles of relatively smooth road, rain and—look! Snow!

Rainy road

When we checked our weather app this morning, we discovered that there was yet another Serious Weather Warning. Our third warning this trip: 1) It’ll be hot (yup); 2) Thunder & Lightning! (kinda); and 3) it’s gonna snow like crazy (huh?).

Other than way and the heck up on a mountain top, we haven’t seen any snow until now. Now, there are several clumps of it by the side of the road. Our snow forensic team (wouldn’t that be a cool job!) figures out that it fell off a truck somehow (on a straight road). But it had to get on that truck somewhere…

As we continue down the highway, we don’t see any more snow, so maybe the crisis is over.

2:30 pm Delta Junction, AK

We have found the only RV camp in town. It’s a big grassy field with water and electrical pipes, right next to the highway. Earlier in the trip, we might have been fussier about it (“Well, it’s kinda close to the highway…”) but now we’re just happy to stop moving.

4:30 pm The End of the Al-Can Highway: Delta Junction, AK

Gini is leafing through one of the free newspapers she’s picked up and reads an article about Delta Junction that says, “It’s the end of the Alaska Highway”!

What?!? We’ve reached the end and didn’t know it??

[Of course, if we read our own Trip Logs, we would know that. From the Aug 3 Trip Log: “To finish the highway quickly, there were four groups of builders—one group started at the end (Delta Junction, AK),…”]

Hey, how about that! (Oops)

Anyway, we drive into town, find the marker and get our picture taken.

The End of the Road

Then we realize: back when we thought the end of the highway was in Fairbanks, we’d planned to drive to Fairbanks (then down to Anchorage and back over to Whitehorse). Now we’re done. We can go anywhere! As long as we’re in Skagway on Aug 27 when the boat leaves, our future is uncharted.

Yup, the mosquitoes really are about this size…

5:20 pm Delta Junction, AK

We head out to a local Drive-In to strategize. But it’s closed on Tuesdays. Is today Tuesday? It must be, because the Drive-In is closed.

So it’s off to a bar, where we drink and plan and then realize that it’s a bad idea to plan after having a drink. So we stop by the weirdest grocery store we’ve ever seen (it’s in a tent in a parking lot and half the shelves are empty and it has no dairy section) and head back to our grassy camp-site to try to sleep in the bright sunlight.

Tomorrow, we’ll plan.

Our nice grassy field—it’s 7:30 pm and still plenty of daylight left!

By the numbers

"Statistics is the grammar of science." Karl Pearson

Miles traveled so far: 2,263

Estimated Percentage of total road miles: 66%

Days so far: 16 days

Estimated Percentage of total road days: 55%

Gini & Robert

Harvey Staff

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