March 23 01:22 AM

Bald eagles and 'Bubbles' in Alaska

June 13, 2007
Every once in awhile I like to get out one of my scrapbooks and reminisce. What happened in June of 1979? The favorite trip of my life took place that summer. On Wednesday, June 11, 1980 this column appeared. At the time my columns were called "Memory Maple Meanderin's"

"Isn't June a beautiful month? Everything is so lush and green. And it is strawberry month and dairy month.

"A year ago at this time we were on our way to Alaska. All the rainfall we have been experiencing and the lush greenery brings the Inside Passage part of the trip to mind. The region along the Inside Passage is known as Southeastern Alaska or the Panhandle. It measures about 125 by 400 miles and consists of thousands of islands covered with lush green rain-forests of spruce, cedar and hemlock. The ground in our Ketchikan camp was covered with thick, plush moss. Boat or plane is the only mode of travel for those living on the islands. We used the Alaska State Ferry system. Our pickup and tiny travel trailer were loaded on the ferry at Prince Rupert and taken off for visits at Wrangell, Ketchikan, Sitka, Juneau and Haines. We lovingly dubbed our tiny trailer "Bubbles." This was because of the bubble window in the roof. It came in handy in the land of the midnight sun. I enjoyed looking at the mountains or tall Sitka spruce while laying in bed. It was still quite daylight at midnight.

"Rain is so common to the panhandlers that they pay little attention to it. Boots are part of their everyday clothing.

"There are more bald eagles in Southeast Alaska than anywhere else in the world. While in Wrangell we camped at the small boat harbor. It seemed a favorite fishing site of the famed eagle. I loved watching them.

"Red is 'way up in Canada' fishing with Don Hayes, Jack Terry, Norm Reid, Leo Kohlhagen, Marv Henderson and Currey Millikin. We hear it is cold, rainy and the fishing is lousy. As per Marty Heim's "Outside" column last week, wait until Don Hayes finds out he is missing all that good walleye fishing in his back yard at Lake St. Clair.

"I always like to have little surprises for Red when he returns home from hunting or fishing trips. One time it was new carpeting in the kitchen and bathroom. Another time the kitchen was papered (I did it all by myself). This time I threw all caution to the wind. Vern Nickolaus built a lovely new front porch! I am anxiously dreading his arrival home this week. If you never see another Memory Maples column, you will know I didn't survive. But, to sort of compensate, I cleaned the woodshed and sort of dug out our dungeony basement.

"FLASH! Dorothy Kohlhagem just called to say it is snowing 'way up in Canada.' (Isn't that hilarious???) Mailman Schoenberg tried to tell them it was too early."

So it was in 1979. A lot of water under the bridge since then but wonderful memories from Memory Maples Farm.

— Country Cousin

Castle Creek
03 - 23 - 19
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