Thursday, October 4, 2018

Down Memory Lane Conclusion

Arriving in Valdez, we drove around to find the church we had been married in 51 years before. As we pulled up in front of it on Eklutna Street, a young man exited the parsonage next door with a dog. 

"Are you the pastor?" I asked.

"No, I'm his son. My parents are away for a few weeks."

We chatted a few minutes. We asked if we could see inside, but he didn't have the keys, so he offered to take our photo standing at the curb in front of the church sign attached to a frame holding the bell from belfry of the original Assemblies of God church in the old town of Valdez. After the 1964 Earthquake, the entire town had had to be moved five miles away to a safer location, and the old town was demolished. (To read more about this, go to

On our wedding day inside Valdez Assembly of God in 1967

Valdez Assembly of God c. 1967 when my father was pastor

Valdez Assembly of God summer of 2018. The entry has been remodeled and the building repainted.
We ate lunch (fish and chips) and drove around taking more photos of the mountains surrounding Valdez before checking in at our hotel.

Arch over the road into Valdez

The next morning we ate breakfast in the hotel. The dining room was decorated with trophies of moose, Dall sheep, and other Alaskan animals.

Clouds had rolled in overnight. We headed back to Anchorage via the Glenn Highway.

Nelchina Glacier from the Glenn Highway

Gunsight Mountain (named for the notch in the flat top where the cloud sits above it)

Lion's Head (in center of photo where roadway rises)

We ate lunch at Sheep Mountain Lodge where I petted a grizzly!
From Sheep Mountain, the road narrowed as we wound our way through the Chugach Mountains. Traffic became heavier too, making it difficult to stop to take more photos as we drove past Matanuska Glacier, which I hiked on in 1957 when I was 11 years old and attending Victory Bible Camp. We continued along the Matanuska River a few miles farther, where we past the entrance to the camp.

From the mountains, we entered the Matanuska Valley famous for its gigantic cabbages and pumpkins. Due to the long hours of sunlight just below the Arctic Circle, vegetables and flowers grow to an enormous size--if the moose don't eat them first!

We stayed in Anchorage over the weekend, making day excursion to Eagle River on Saturday, and Wasilla on Monday to visit several friends from high school.

On Tuesday, we reluctantly said goodbye to Alaska and flew to Seattle to rent a car and visit friends and family in Washington and Oregon.

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