Monday, July 28, 2014

What. Are. These?!?

The Lower 48 has lots of strange, exotic creatures. I can't make heads or tails of them:

What. Are. These?!?

In other news, here is the second top Minor News headline this morning:
Park says no to pet goat: Denali officials concerned about disease risk to Dall sheep

Summary: A local guy was walking his pet goat, Dr. Gonzo, in compliance with the National Park Service's rule that pets must be on a 6-foot leash. Dr. Gonzo was on his leash. But the Park people are worried that Dr. Gonzo might transmit diseases to the wild Dall Sheep population. Park Superintendent Don Striker, who is possessed of strange syntax, said, "Bringing in exotic — quote, unquote — domesticated animals, even the caribou herd can be at risk... I am personally following up for Denali with a temporary closure." Dr. Gonzo's owner, Corey Furrow, "said he will likely stop visiting the park in favor of places he can hike with Dr. Gonzo. Last week he drove to Fairbanks and hiked the Angel Rocks trail."

Monday, July 21, 2014

Oh the things I do for you people!

Here is a flock of lambs boing-ing:

You're welcome.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Guardian Angel

People describe God as a shepherd, but all of the descriptions put me more in mind of a lead dog--guiding us, making sure we don't do anything incredibly stupid, comforting us when we are sad, celebrating with us when we are happy, keeping us off thin ice, and watching us in waking and in sleep. Maybe dogs are actual agents of God. I don't literally believe in guardian angels any more, but I believe in Autumn!

Friday, July 18, 2014

Happy fifteenth birthday to the World's Most Perfect Dogs!

Starbuck is, of course, the World's Third Most Perfect Dog, but these genteel ladies are reeeeeaallly tough to match!

They are the lovingest, cuddliest, most fuzzyful, smartest, sweetest, most devoted companions anyone could ask for! They helped me learn to ski, hauled around my equipment (and me) when I was doing snow research, cuddled with me whenever I needed it, refrained from eating the bunnies, selected a life companion for me, approved and trained their own successor, and guided me down fourteen thousand miles (and counting!) of runs, walks, skis, and hikes!

Here's to as many more years (and miles) together as we can share!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Top o' the Minor News

1) UAF research team says Arctic lakes may help offset climate change. My takeaway from this: Plants that were frozen 10,000 years ago are still alive. Wow.

2) High water warning issued for beloved goofy boat race (think Bay to Breakers on water). Apparently, the 'banks is set to break a precipitation record!

3) Sliding mass threatens pipeline, Dalton Highway. "An immense glacier-like mass of soil and rock is inching its way toward the Dalton Highway, threatening to cut off the only access road to the North Slope and putting the trans-Alaska oil pipeline at risk." A good reminder that ice is fluid and flows just like water, just more slowly.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


Work travel is different here. Lunch on the road is this:

Here is a photo I took from my car window of a bear holding up his leg and licking his crotch. The beauty, dignity, and majesty of nature: get it right here, folks!

The same bear, when he stood up and saw another bear nearby. The other bear was clearly the dominant one, and this fella ran away!

The new style Subaru dog gates have largish gaps to accommodate the passenger air bags. Autumn likes to shove her head through: