Recession

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Dave

Broadcaster, formerly "ashergrey"
.
Joined
May 5, 2012
Messages
1,691
The boreal forest burns. Summer swelter sweeps the Arctic Circle.

_MG_0321.jpg


Smoke slides south, smothering the subarctic. We arrive on airliners feeling somewhat complicit.

_MG_0299.jpg


Cruise ships clog the waterfront in town.

_MG_0035.jpg


Restauranteurs bleed our wallets like thieving crows.

_MG_0055.jpg


Eagles congregate like pigeons on every overhead. We keep count, every part the typical tourists.

_MG_0021.jpg


Take a gander at the gold rush glory holes.

_MG_0011.jpg


_MG_0036.jpg


On Mendenhall, Mergus merganser makes a game out of swim lessons.

_MG_0152.jpg


She dives deep, leaving her crèche to flounder. The abandoned brood bobs in panic. When her hooded head reappears, they scramble to rejoin her in a flurry of fluff.

_MG_0141.jpg


Homo solitudinem floats nearby, an invasive species.

_MG_0115.jpg


Bigger waters beckon. We bid Juneau bon voyage. The Marine Highway ferries us north.

_MG_0353.jpg


Mind manners at the international border.

Breach British Columbia.

Such a scenic shuttle.

On to Yukon.

_MG_0409.jpg


Rigging for rapids.

_MG_8638.jpg


Rented rafts don't row the same. They sag and creak like an old man's bones.

_MG_8666.jpg


_MG_0446.jpg


We slip along on an ever swelling ribbon.

_MG_0474.jpg


Silver to Sediments, sloshing onto bars of gravel.

_MG_0500.jpg


The sun makes a long sideways slide toward the skyline.

_MG_0487.jpg


A gradual recline into the soft embrace of perpetual twilight.

_MG_0502.jpg


Insomniac songbirds herald its return far too early.

Solar rays scatter in the Venusian sky, blotting out the batholiths.

_MG_0504.jpg


The river, too, turns otherworldly.

_MG_0529.jpg


The water divides and multiplies. Hydrologic mitosis.

Braids break away, somersault down cobble slopes, turn and crawl back up again.

_MG_0727.jpg


Gravity seems selective.

Even the sun sulks, ebbing into gray, as Ursus arctos horribilis makes an appearance

_MG_0970.jpg


The Alsek sisters — Fairweather, Pentice, Noisy — crowd close.

_MG_8815.jpg


_MG_1195.jpg


_MG_1228.jpg


_MG_8795.jpg


Grand Pacific's sons — Konamoxt and Melbern — insist on their share of the glory.

_MG_1234.jpg


_MG_8820.jpg


Mist metamorphoses the landscape in the morning.

_MG_1305.jpg


_MG_8911.jpg


_MG_1372.jpg


Rivers fuse. Alsek gifts Tatshenshini its name by marriage.

_MG_8892.jpg


The commingled couple dance across a broad valley, the rise and fall of their joyous steps making our boats sway to the drunken rhythm.

Current carries us over an invisible line. A lone voice raises the opening stanza of Key's iconic anthem. Then, one by one, we pick up the tune. Wind and waves swallow the sound, leaving the cloud-shrouded ramparts of unnamed peaks unmoved by our song.

_MG_1485.jpg


Walker proves a misnomer.

_MG_1628.jpg


_MG_1850.jpg


An impromptu cheer arises at the sight of ice calving into the slack water.

_MG_1776.jpg


_MG_1638.jpg


Back in the flow, days now blurring.

_MG_1913.jpg


The palette bursts where Epilobium angustifolium deigns to share real estate.

_MG_1959.jpg


_MG_1966.jpg


This place exudes an elder majesty.

_MG_1814.jpg


Unlike the desert I know, it does not strive to impress by way of its oddities.

_MG_2018.jpg


It is of an older world, solemn, stately, dignified.

I put these words to paper with a dull pencil.

Nearing the end now.

_MG_9191.jpg


The door is open. We take it.

_MG_9243.jpg


_MG_2747.jpg


_MG_4007.jpg


Recession.

_MG_2210.jpg


Drawing away.

Retreating from past prestige.

The word weighs on the lips, heavy with connotation. It wedges in the folds of the grey matter, trapped like a polar explorer plunged in an icy crevasse.

_MG_9608.jpg


It finds new context here.

_MG_9439.jpg


The thought occurs that the halcyon of the Holocene has proved too kind to Homo sapiens.

Lost to our collective memory are the past eons when this northern land was steppe. Ignored are the shifts in climate that sang the swan song to Canis dirus, Mammoths primigenius, Arctodus simus, Smilodon fatalis and so many others.

_MG_0278.jpg


Who will mourn for me when extinction comes?

_MG_0336.jpg
 
Last edited:

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WasatchWill

Ready For More
.
Joined
Jul 23, 2013
Messages
1,412
And here I was ready to respond with, "What!? No big bad brown bear pics? Boring!" But...you managed to sneak one in there after all. Epic looking trip, @Dave, @Nick, and crew! And a terrific, even poetic TR, Dave. Beautiful!
 

b.stark

Forever Wandering
.
Joined
Apr 8, 2015
Messages
532
Superbly written and photographed! Headed up to those hallowed northern lands soon myself.
 

Kmatjhwy

Wilderness Wanderer
Joined
Sep 23, 2016
Messages
323
Thanks for posting! Magnificent! Have been awaiting the posting of your trip for have been sooooo missing Alaska this summer. Great Photos!
 

Mikjik86

Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2018
Messages
47
I am in awe of these pictures and words. Cheers, salutations, and congrats on an amazing trip and a truly breathtaking trip report! Truly an elder place with unmatched enormousness.
 

Artemus

I walk
.
Joined
Jun 25, 2012
Messages
4,332
Brilliant capture of the essence of the land through your photography and description, Dave. Thanks for this.

Your message resonates and moves me to tears.
 

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ZLmtns

Member
.
Joined
Mar 4, 2018
Messages
46
Most excellent report Dave. As a participant of a 2004 full Alsek trip I can appreciate the feelings you must have about this special place. I am looking at going back there someday,soon I hope. Dennis
 

Riggs

Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2014
Messages
66
What a much better use for Recession. Incredible photos and words. Invasive species, haha, how true. I'll have to remember that one.
 

Scott Chandler

Wildness is a necessity- John Muir
Joined
Jan 4, 2014
Messages
1,074
The boreal forest burns. Summer swelter sweeps the Arctic Circle.

View attachment 80170

Smoke slides south, smothering the subarctic. We arrive on airliners feeling somewhat complicit.

View attachment 80171

Cruise ships clog the waterfront in town.

View attachment 80172

Restauranteurs bleed our wallets like thieving crows.

View attachment 80173

Eagles congregate like pigeons on every overhead. We keep count, every part the typical tourists.

View attachment 80174

Take a gander at the gold rush glory holes.

View attachment 80175

View attachment 80176

On Mendenhall, Mergus merganser makes a game out of swim lessons.

View attachment 80177

She dives deep, leaving her crèche to flounder. The abandoned brood bobs in panic. When her hooded head reappears, they scramble to rejoin her in a flurry of fluff.

View attachment 80178

Homo solitudinem floats nearby, an invasive species.

View attachment 80179

Bigger waters beckon. We bid Juneau bon voyage. The Marine Highway ferries us north.

View attachment 80180

Mind manners at the international border.

Breach British Columbia.

Such a scenic shuttle.

On to Yukon.

View attachment 80181

Rigging for rapids.

View attachment 80182

Rented rafts don't row the same. They sag and creak like an old man's bones.

View attachment 80183

View attachment 80184

We slip along on an ever swelling ribbon.

View attachment 80185

Silver to Sediments, sloshing onto bars of gravel.

View attachment 80216

The sun makes a long sideways slide toward the skyline.

View attachment 80186

A gradual recline into the soft embrace of perpetual twilight.

View attachment 80187

Insomniac songbirds herald its return far too early.

Solar rays scatter in the Venusian sky, blotting out the batholiths.

View attachment 80188

The river, too, turns otherworldly.

View attachment 80189

The water divides and multiplies. Hydrologic mitosis.

Braids break away, somersault down cobble slopes, turn and crawl back up again.

View attachment 80190

Gravity seems selective.

Even the sun sulks, ebbing into gray, as Ursus arctos horribilis makes an appearance

View attachment 80191

The Alsek sisters — Fairweather, Pentice, Noisy — crowd close.

View attachment 80192

View attachment 80193

View attachment 80194

View attachment 80195

Grand Pacific's sons — Konamoxt and Melbern — insist on their share of the glory.

View attachment 80196

View attachment 80197

Mist metamorphoses the landscape in the morning.

View attachment 80198

View attachment 80199

View attachment 80200

Rivers fuse. Alsek gifts Tatshenshini its name by marriage.

View attachment 80201

The commingled couple dance across a broad valley, the rise and fall of their joyous steps making our boats sway to the drunken rhythm.

Current carries us over an invisible line. A lone voice raises the opening stanza of Key's iconic anthem. Then, one by one, we pick up the tune. Wind and waves swallow the sound, leaving the cloud-shrouded ramparts of unnamed peaks unmoved by our song.

View attachment 80202

Walker proves a misnomer.

View attachment 80203

View attachment 80204

An impromptu cheer arises at the sight of ice calving into the slack water.

View attachment 80205

View attachment 80206

Back in the flow, days now blurring.

View attachment 80207

The palette bursts where Epilobium angustifolium deigns to share real estate.

View attachment 80208

View attachment 80209

This place exudes an elder majesty.

View attachment 80210

Unlike the desert I know, it does not strive to impress by way of its oddities.

View attachment 80211

It is of an older world, solemn, stately, dignified.

I put these words to paper with a dull pencil.

Nearing the end now.

View attachment 80212

The door is open. We take it.

View attachment 80213

View attachment 80214

View attachment 80215

Recession.

View attachment 80221

Drawing away.

Retreating from past prestige.

The word weighs on the lips, heavy with connotation. It wedges in the folds of the grey matter, trapped like a polar explorer plunged in an icy crevasse.

View attachment 80219

It finds new context here.

View attachment 80218

The thought occurs that the halcyon of the Holocene has proved too kind to Homo sapiens.

Lost to our collective memory are the past eons when this northern land was steppe. Ignored are the shifts in climate that sang the swan song to Canis dirus, Mammoths primigenius, Arctodus simus, Smilodon fatalis and so many others.

View attachment 80220

Who will mourn for me when extinction comes?

View attachment 80217
Beeeeeeeeauitul!
 

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