The Coastal Classic Train, Alaska

During my first visit to Alaska, way back in 2007, we’d planned to travel by train from Seward to Anchorage. If we had, there’s a good chance it would have made it’s way into the upcoming book about my Alaskan adventures, Jaspa’s Journey 4: The Hermit of Kennecott.

Seward, 2007

On that occasion we got as far as boarding the train in Seward, only to be told to disembark a couple of hours later. A landslide in the mountains had blocked the track, and we had to make trip to Anchorage by bus (which was still pretty spectacular, too be fair).

When we returned to Alaska this year, we were determined to set matters straight. And so we did, riding Coastal Classic the opposite direction from what we would have done in 2007, from Anchorage to Seward.

Here’s the photographic story of our Journey:

The Giant locomotive of the Coastal Classic

A ‘Dome Car’ with its glass roof

Leaving Anchorage in the early morning

Entering the Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet

Hanging off the train

Tracks alongside Turnagain Arm

Looking backwards along the train towards the Cook Inlet

Upstairs in our Dome Car

I wonder why it’s called the Coastal Classic?

The mouth of Turnagain Arm

The white blob in the foreground is a beluga whale!

Approaching the village of Portage

What a landscape!

A dead forest, killed by the 1964 earthquake, near Portage

The branch line to Whittier

Heading into the mountains

Just one of dozens of waterfalls we saw along the way

Not a bad view for breakfast!

Rich just had to pop outside to get a photo without a window in the way

Climbing up the pass

A pristine lake in the mountains

Believe it or not the red things in the stream are salmon heading upstream to spawn

The narrowest stretch of our journey

One of several eagles we saw along the route

Entering Seward

Expand the minds of you and your children by travelling the World with Jaspa’s Journey adventure novels! The first three – The Great Migration, The Pride of London and Jaspa’s Waterloo – are now available in both paperback and ebook formats. Click here for more information.

Jaspa’s Journey: Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!

This week’s post was inspired by the photo themes Things People Drive from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, Through Glass from Nancy of Nancy Merrill Photography, Giant from Patrick of Pix to Words, and Public from Fandango.

 

Advertisements
Posted in Adventure, Environment, Jaspa's Journey, Travel, USA | Tagged , , , | 15 Comments

Juliet’s Balcony, Verona

One of the most visited places in Verona, Italy, is Casa di Giulietta, which translates as Juliet’s House.

Visitors are spun a fiction that this is where the famous balcony scene from Romeo and Juliet took place. But rather sadly, in reality the building has nothing to do with the story. In all probability, it wasn’t even an inspiration for any part Shakespeare’s play. In fact, ‘Juliet’s’ balcony, located in the building’s courtyard, wasn’t even constructed until the 20th Century!

All that being said, I still visited it during my visit to Verona. Well… some things you just have to do, don’t you?

Expand the minds of you and your children by travelling the World with Jaspa’s Journey adventure novels! The first three – The Great Migration, The Pride of London and Jaspa’s Waterloo – are now available in both paperback and ebook formats. Click here for more information.

Jaspa’s Journey: Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!

This week’s post was inspired by the photo themes Places People Visit from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, Balcony from Fandango, Aperture form Paula of Lost in Translation, Columns from Bren of Ryan Photography, and Whimsical from Nancy of Nancy Merrill Photography.

Posted in Europe, History, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments

Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm, Maui

The Ali’i Kula Lavender Farm is located in Maui’s Upcountry region, on the lower slopes of the Haleakala volcano.  At an elevation of about 4000 feet, the climate is pleasantly ideal for growing lavender.

There are around 55,000 lavender plants at AKL, representing 45 different varieties. And it doesn’t just look pretty. As you can imagine, the smell is wonderful! Just ask the bees!

The view isn’t bad either…

Expand the minds of you and your children by travelling the World with Jaspa’s Journey adventure novels! The first three – The Great Migration, The Pride of London and Jaspa’s Waterloo – are now available in both paperback and ebook formats. Click here for more information.

Jaspa’s Journey: Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!

This week’s post was inspired by the photo themes Things People Grow from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge and Monochrome from Debbie’s Travel With Intent.

 

Posted in Environment, Travel, USA | Tagged , , , | 11 Comments

Prague Pastels

When thinking of Prague, most people imagine dark, looming Gothic towers. But the Czech capital has a lighter side, represented by the gentle pastel colours of many of its historic buildings.

Come with me on a walk through the streets of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, for a glimpse of Prague’s softer side.

Expand the minds of you and your children by travelling the World with Jaspa’s Journey adventure novels! The first three – The Great Migration, The Pride of London and Jaspa’s Waterloo – are now available in both paperback and ebook formats. Click here for more information.

Jaspa’s Journey: Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!

This week’s post was inspired by several photo themes: Pastel Colours from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, Inhabitable from Paula’s Lost in Translation, Hidden from Debbie’s Travel With Intent, and Jo’s Monday Walk, of course.

 

Posted in Europe, History, Travel, UNESCO World Heritage Site | Tagged , , | 10 Comments

The 2018 Author Interview Series Featuring Dr. Rich Meyrick

This gallery contains 5 photos.

Originally posted on Author Don Massenzio:
This week’s author interview features Dr. Rich Meyrick. Rich is from the UK but now lives in Canada where he spends his days writing books and posting on his blog. On a side note,…

Gallery | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Walking the Epic Monaco Formula 1 Grand Prix Racetrack

Witnessing firsthand the madness that is the Monaco Formula 1 Grand Prix is a Bucket List item I’m still yet to achieve. (Although I shouldn’t complain too much, since for the last four years I’ve spent the same weekend at another iconic race, the Indy 500.)

I might not have had the chance to watch a race live at Monaco, but last spring I at least got the opportunity to visit the principality. And what better way to get a feel for the tight, confined streets of Monte Carlo, than to walk the route of the F1 track…

The Start-Finish Line

Building the pits

Me and Rich on Pole Position

Race Control is the first structure to be built for the race

Turn 1, Sainte Devote, where so much of the action happens

Sculpture of William Grover-Williams in his Bugatti at Sainte Devote

Heading up Beau Rivage

Looking back at the harbour from Beau Rivage

Curving left through Massenet at the top of Beau Rivage

Squeezing into Casino Square

Casino Square

The World Famous Casino Monte Carlo

Passing the ‘bump’ on the way to Mirabeau

Mirabeau

Aiming for the Grand Hotel Hairpin

Looking down on the hairpin exit

It’s easy to see why the Monaco hairpin is the slowest corner in Formula 1

One of the hairpin curbs

Me at the hairpin

Continuing down the hill to Portier (although this guy would be going the wrong way in the race!)

Approaching Portier

Portier from above

Modern era Formula 1 car near Portier

Me above the entrance to the tunnel

Sue modelling the curb at Portier on the run down to the tunnel

Curving through the tunnel

Part of the crash protection already in place in the tunnel

Dark to light: about to exit the tunnel

Between the tunnel and the chicane

A chicane is located here during the race… I couldn’t figure out how they’d fit it in!

Assembling the metal protective barriers

Look how close the track runs to the harbour towards Tabac!

Dodging through the Swimming Pool section

Stands going up near the Swimming Pool, opposite the pits

Rascasse cafe and corner

The short dash from Rascasse to the final corner of the lap, which is named after the man who invented the Monaco Grand Prix, Anthony Noghes

Aim straight ahead to navigate the Anthony Noghes corner onto the start-finish straight, or duck right into the pits

My second statue of Juan Manuel Fangio with his Mercedes, this time at the Anthony Noghes corner (the other was in Buenos Aires, Argentina)

Back onto the start-finish straight, a lap of Monaco completed

Do you think they’ll let me join?!

Expand the minds of you and your children by travelling the World with Jaspa’s Journey adventure novels! The first three – The Great Migration, The Pride of London and Jaspa’s Waterloo – are now available in both paperback and ebook formats. Click here for more information.

Jaspa’s Journey: Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!

This week’s post was inspired by a whole bunch of photo themes: Cars from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, Cee’s Which Way Challenge, Transportation from Jenn’s Traveling at Wits End, Action from Debbie’s Travel With Intent, Epic from Patrick’s Pix To Words, and Jo’s Monday Walk, of course.

 

Posted in Europe, Formula 1, History, Travel | Tagged , , , | 16 Comments

The Lion’s Mound, Waterloo Battlefield

On June 18th, 1815, one of the bloodiest and most famous battles in history was fought in the fields southeast of Brussels, the present-day capital of Belgium. At the Battle of Waterloo, Lord Wellington and his allies defeated the French Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte once and for all.

At the time of the battle, Belgium was still a part of the Netherlands. The senior Dutch (and therefore Belgian) officer to take part at Waterloo was William, Prince of Orange. In commemoration of the Prince being wounded in the left shoulder by a musket ball during the battle, an enormous conical mound crowned with a massive cast iron lion was constructed on the spot.

Ever since, the Lion’s Mound has dominated the peaceful farmland that was once the site of such a vicious battle.

You can read all about my adventures on the Waterloo Battlefield (including climbing The Lion’s Mound) in Jaspa’s Journey 3: Jaspa’s Waterloo.

 

 

 

 

 

Expand the minds of you and your children by travelling the World with Jaspa’s Journey adventure novels! The first three – The Great Migration, The Pride of London and Jaspa’s Waterloo – are now available in both paperback and ebook formats. Click here for more information.

Jaspa’s Journey: Perfect for Kids 8 – 80!

This post was inspired by the photo themes of Piles or Stacks from Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge, Afar from Debbie’s Travel With Intent, and Clouds from Patrick’s Pix To Words.

 

Posted in Europe, History, Jaspa's Journey, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments