A Saturday in Unalaska

While on a work trip to Unalaska/Dutch Harbor in February 2016, Carrie had some time to walk around.  That Saturday was one of those lucky days when Carrie’s phone automatically made a slideshow while she slept:

One of several boat harbors.

Path leading to Expedition Park on Expedition Island.

Although now connected by land and no longer an island, Expedition Island used to be the red light district.

Now, it’s a lovely place to picnic or BBQ if one is brave enough to face Unalaska’s famous eagles.

One of many teetering houses around town.

One of many big mountains of shipping containers around town.  It is often said that the Port of Dutch Harbor processes more fish than anywhere else in the USA.  The vast majority of the fish goes in shipping containers, unlike in Adak where the seafood flies  by 747 jet.

This zigzag line is a remnant of WWII-era trenches.

This is a WWII-era hospital.

The Russian Orthodox church in downtown Unalaska.The food at the electronic music & art party.  It was art, too!

Tribute to Aleutian Couchsurfing

In 2011 when we planned a summer trip to Adak Island, we flew from Fairbanks down to Anchorage.  In Anchorage, our flight cancelled due to a problem with runway equipment.  AlaskaAir was nice enough to fly us back up to Fairbanks and also refunded our miles.  We had a week off work and wondered, “What are the chances that this is the week the ferry sails out the Aleutians?”  We looked it up and indeed it was!  We flew on RAVN points down to Homer, walked to the spit, camped, and then walked to the ferry.  We sailed on to Kodiak, Chignik, False Pass, Cold Bay, Sand Point, King Cove, Akutan, and Unalaska.  Once in Unalaska we’d budgeted for one night in the fisherman’s bunkhouse motel when our outbound flight on When Air (PenAir) cancelled for mechanical reasons.  We spent several more nights there, walking to and from the airport, hoping for seats on flights every few hours.  Despite that typical Dutch Harbor hiccup, Kitty never lets us live this down: we did not take Kitty on this trip.  Our excuse: Kitty was just a baby (two months old) and we did not want Kitty to get W-E-T or L-O-S-T.  Clearly, this was before Kitty started doing everything with us.  (Alain will also not let Carrie live down that she broke our camera in our first port, Kodiak, by putting the supposedly waterproof device in a few inches of water in a marine life touch tank).  Anyway, during the one year that Carrie flew around on the awful, horrible, horrendous, uncomfortable When Air planes, Kitty kept hoping for a visit to Unalaska.

In April 2016, Carrie took Kitty to Unalaska.  Kitty found this pot of Bonsai in the Airport Bar & Restaurant.

Kitty fell in love with many friends in the home of our most amazing couchsurfing host.

Kitty found a tree to climb inside her home.  This was Carrie’s third time surfing with the same wonderful host, who was the best part of Carrie’s job.

Kitty was so happy Carrie finally took Kitty to Unalaska!

Speaking of the wonderful couchsurfing host…during a February work trip, Carrie arranged to spend the weekend in Unalaska.  (On a 2-3 week work trip, one has to spend the weekend somewhere…).  Sometimes on Carrie’s work trips around the Aleutians she had a little trouble drumming up work to do.  In this case, it worked out because the wonderful host introduced Carrie to a whole new side of Unalaska: the creative.  The couchsurfing host took Carrie to an invitation-only electronic music record release party in an artsy warehouse in a part of town Carrie had never been to previously.

Who knew?  Thank you to our wonderful host.  Enjoy your travels, may they be long and merry!

Witty’s Summer Camp on Adak Island

Witty the cat lives in Pittsburgh, PA, with Carrie’s sister.  Said sister has often talked about coming to visit Adak Island, but logistics hadn’t worked out.  We came up with an alternate solution: Witty came to visit!  Witty went to a very wonderful summer camp on Adak Island.  She got mailed in a box of fresh vegetables.  She returned with a four page list of all the activities she participated in at camp, from a list of cooking classes to riding on 4 wheelers and even kayaking.  Unfortunately, her camp counselors did not do the best job of taking pictures at camp.

Witty must have gone on a trip somewhere because this picture is at the Anchorage airport.

Witty enjoyed riding on the Honda with uncle Alain.  He took her on many adventures but always kept her very, very safe.

Adak’s historic & contemporary Pet Cemetery is located next to the Adak National Forest.  Witty visited both on one of her first trips out.  Andre the baby chick is the only bird with a gravestone.  (Carrie later asked a young person why only one of the dead chickens has a grave.  The “duh” answer was: no bodies, they got ATE! [by other animals])

Witty also had plenty of time to frolic with the other cats, including Kitty.

Adak Videos for Aviation Geeks

Four videos for aviation geeks and those who love Adak Island: landing, take off, taxi, and flying around, from January and Feburary 2016.

This landing in Adak video has some good footage of a fishing boat offloading to the tramper.

And then, the next month, February 2016, taxiing out in Adak:


And take-off, from Adak Island, Feburary 2016.  Always so beautiful to fly, but always so sad to leave the island.

Pesach 2016

This year Carrie was too sick to observe Pesach other than in her imagination, but not so was last year.

Latkes (not sure why there were latkes…)

Matzah Ball Soup (the matzah balls were rock-hard, of course…and the broth was kinda beefy, not golden)

Gefilte Fish

Seder Plate


Bitty and Yiddie after Yiddie came back to Pittsburgh from his short trip to Adak via a nutty itinerary:

Pittsburgh, PA to DuBois, PA

DuBois, PA to Baltimore, MD

Baltimore, MD to Seattle, WA

Seattle WA, to Anchorage, AK

Anchorage, AK to Adak, AK

Adak, AK to Anchorage, AK

Anchorage, AK to Seattle, WA

Seattle, WA to Baltimore, MD

Baltimore, MD to Hagerstown, MD

Hagerstown, MD to Pittsburgh, PA


The nuttiest part was going through TSA in DuBois.