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The Alaska Railroad Adjacent to Denali National Park
We had lunch as early as possible on the train, because I knew the most spectacular scenery would be in the second half of the trip as we traveled along the edge of Denali National Park. We were fortunate to be visiting a day or two after an early season snowfall because the colorful mountains were beautifully tipped with clean, white snow - not to mention the fact the snow wasn't falling while we were there! I've had great luck with the weather every time I've been to Alaska. Luck can't last a lifetime unless you die young, and I'm always fearful it's going to be miserable the next time I go. How fearful? Would you believe me if I told you I actually have the desktop plaque of the design in that hyperlink? Believe it or not, dudes, although I didn't buy it because of the weather in Alaska, it should reveal something to you of my cynical personality.
There's something about that yellow cabin with the red roof next to the power lines and the valley they're in that makes this scene look more like Colorado or Wyoming than Alaska. But the double snow-capped peaks, the valley and the cabin pleasantly contrast one another, and I just had to capture it digitally. If you noticed the sepia tint in these pictures, it's because I took them inside one of the train's domed viewing cars, which had tinted windows. I didn't feel like hanging out of the train between the railcars vying with the other photographers for a place to stand with an unobstructed view anymore. Sheesh, people, I went on vacation to get away from the rat race! Just let me take pictures through sepia-tinted windows in peace - it's not like I'm charging you admission to view them, or anything. Heck, if you emailed me and asked for the full size version of some of the pictures here, I'd probably ask out of curiosity what you were planning to do with them and send them anyway, although a mention of credit would be nice.
This is my favorite picture from the train ride, and it is one that makes me wish I had kept standing between the railcars so it wouldn't have the sepia tint. The wind was hardly blowing, allowing the snow-capped peaks, trees and clouds to reflect nicely in the lake. Did you know there are over one million lakes and ponds in Alaska? The number is due to tundra lakes in the arctic north and lakes fed by glaciers and mountain runoff in the south.
Well, this spectacular view is one of my favorites, too. The way the mountain chain curves back in an arc or horseshoe shape gives an amazing sense of vastness. Getting a glimpse of the infinite always gives me the chills!
Check out the red hue of that mountain! Isn't it beautiful? That's most likely blueberry turning to its autumn colors. It's the end of the growing season, as if I needed to tell you that with the snow so visible, so there are blueberries are on the plants, but they're small and much less numerous than the leaves on the plants!
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