A preview of things to come. We enjoyed Seward but there was much more to see. More about Day 12 after the break..
Staying in Seward was relaxing and well worth the ride the day before. We had plans to see the rest of the peninsula but first we needed to handle some things in Seward.
We needed to find the post office to send our post cards and then grab some food. After the post office, we set out to the Smoke Shack Restaurant to get some grub. This restaurant was housed in a retired Alaska Railroad train car. The food was normal. Gregg was hoping for something smoked but it appeared the "Smoked" was just a play on words in the restaurant title.
I ended up getting the chicken sandwich (pictured above) and Gregg got the ribs. Everything turned out pretty tasty.
Next on our checklist for the day, the Seward Exit Glacier. We grabbed our gear and rode back up north on the Seward Highway. The turn was to the left just outside of town. We rode in admiring the beautiful landscape. We finally caught a glimpse of the glacier in the distance. It was still there! (Great!) We arrived in the parking lot and proceeded to change out of some of our moto stuff and walk up the path to get a closer view. The walking path takes about 30 minutes if your young (or young at heart). We, of course, took some pictures as we got closer.
The saddest part about this visit though was the fact that the national parks people posted signs indicating where the glacier was in relation to time. The sign that Gregg was standing next to was indicating that the glacier was up to that point back in 1998. It has melted back quite far since then.
After pictures, we headed back down to the bikes. We saw what we wanted to see in Seward. We were off to Homer!
Our first quick stop involved the jerky cart that we had passed the day before. The owner was there and we were ready to check out what he had to offer. He gave us some samples and Gregg ended up getting some of his venison jerky. Happy day.
At about 18:00 we reached Sterling, AK where we filled up. After some credit card confusion with the attendant we were back on the road stopping a couple more times on the way. We were especially excited about the fact that we could see Denali from where we were. Gregg managed to get the first picture in this post of Denali that day. It made up for the fact that everything was clouded over while we were on the Denali Highway.
After encountering some construction traffic we made it out onto the Homer Spit around 20:15. The Homer Spit is an interesting piece of land. It juts out into the Kachemak bay from main land and, for what ever reason, the locals decided to build buildings out here (mostly tourist traps).
We found a camping spot on the beach. It was located on the western portion of the spit. At that point in time it was uncomfortably windy. We had some other choices of camp spots but we felt like this was the best one at the time.
Fortunately for us the wind died down later that night. We set up camp and made dinner. We had to shield my stove from the wind using my improvised wind cover and also some rocks. The menu for the evening you ask? Why tri-colored rotini with sauce.
Gregg managed to get some pictures of the town before it got too dark. Definitely worth the ride.
No trip to Homer was complete without taking a trip to the Salty Dawg Saloon. They only serve out of bottles here so we decided to take one down.
We soaked in the decor. The place was covered with dollar bills (and other pieces of currency) from people all over the world. That made up for the lack of their tap and beer choices. After our beer it was time to head back. We wanted to get some rest for what laid ahead.
One of our favorite pieces of gear was the tent. The Kelty Gunnison 3.1.
Gregg had purchased it with the idea in mind that it should fit two people + gear comfortably. He had used it a couple times previously and proved to be a tough little tent. I don't think we've found anything wrong with it since. It has been a solid design and I highly recommend it.