Fairbanks trip

Last week Bethany and I headed up to Fairbanks for a few days. Checking in to our flight on the Wednesday morning, they had a full body 737 so were re-assigning seats to balance it out. Bethany was upgraded to First Class as is an Alaska Air MVP, and I was shuffled to row 9. We asked to try and sit together, but they couldn’t then figure out how to downgrade Bethany again to sit next to me. No worries, so I went to park the truck. Came back in and Bethany had a First Class ticket for me as the check-in staff just upped me too to make it easier ๐Ÿ˜€ I could get used to flying First Class…

Anyways, Fairbanks was a little different than we expected. Was good though once we got used to the layout. Downtown was pretty run down and not much going on, but elsewhere was fine. We headed up to see the Trans-Alaska Pipeline, something I’ve wanted to see for a long time:

Trans-Alaska Pipeline

Something else we both wanted to see was the Northern Lights. On our way north of Fairbanks, I stopped to watch the Ice Road Truckers make their way home:

Light trails

A little after midnight, we finally got to see the Aurora:

Aurora Borealis

We were like 40 miles north of Fairbanks and totally on our own. It was pretty awesome! We got a couple of short shows which kept us happy:

Northern Lights

On Friday we headed 20 miles or so out of Fairbanks to North Pole, which was quite a surreal place. The street lights were colored like candy canes, trees had lights and decorations on them, streets were named ‘Santa Claus Lane’, etc. No trip there would have been complete with going to Santa Claus House (though Santa himself was on holiday…):

Santa House

To get over North Pole, on Saturday we drove out to Chena Hot Springs, which was just awesome. It’s nestled away in the mountains all by itself, and has geothermal hot springs which feed a couple of pools. The outdoor rock pool was very, very relaxing. Surrounded by snow capped mountains and trees whilst in the warming pool was great, and it was about 45F out, so even lying on the rocks in the sun kept us fairly warm. It was also nice to then wander around the resort and check out all the old and rusty machines and gold panning area and stuff:

Chena Hot Springs

For more photos, check this flickr set of Fairbanks

Overall, it was a great few days. Felt weird once we landed in Anchorage and were waiting on our flight back to Bethel. Would be the last time I would be flying out here (assuming I don’t get roped in to helping with Cama’i for Pat’s final year next March). Plus, it matched up that 7 weeks to the day I would be flying back in to Anchorage from Bethel for the last time, and then 8 weeks to the day, I would be leaving Anchorage to the lower 48. I’ve flown to Bethel something like 20 times over the past 5 years, and will be weird leaving. Last night I sold my snowmobile, and have my boat up for sale too. Hopefully that will sell soon. I’ll be mailing off the last few boxes in a couple of weeks when I’m done with my desktop computer and winter clothes and stuff, and then that’s it ๐Ÿ™‚

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Senior Content Development for Microsoft writing about Azure virtual machines. Occasionally I play video games.

Posted in alaska, photos + galleries, travelling
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About Me

Iain Foulds, 33 years old. Originally from England, now living in Seattle. I currently work as a Senior Content Developer for Microsoft writing about Azure VMs. Gamer. Very passionate about photography. Comments and opinions expressed here are my own. More...

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