Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Tanalian Falls: A Photo Story

I meant to post these pictures yesterday—they’re from a hike we went on Sunday afternoon up to Tanalian Falls.

We set out from the lodge about 2:30, after cleaning up the kitchen, wiping down the bathrooms, and sweeping the porches. 'We' means Jen, Kurt, Adam, and myself.

Port Alsworth has two runways, and just as we crossed the first one, this float plane flew in and landed in the bay.

After taking a few photos, we went on, crossed the second runway and headed up into the hills.

From the road, we branched off onto a trail wide enough for four-wheelers. Then we branched off again onto a foot path. From there, we climbed up several steep hills—by steep, I mean hills that you could use a ladder to get up them, or tree roots, as the case might be.

By the time we got to the top, we could look back and see the lodge (the small building to the right).

Most of the trail was dirt, but in parts the park service had built boardwalks over wetlands. We’re in the Lake Clark National Park, after all.

Then we had more dirt trails, and more tree roots.

The hike was only supposed to take an hour going up, but we added an extra half-hour with all the stops we made to take pictures.

Eventually, though, we reached the fork where the trail split--one branch leading to a view point above the falls, the other going to the beach below the falls. We went above the falls to start.

Upstream, we could see a mountain with some very familiar craters or cirques.

Instead of going back to the main trail, we took a short cut down the hillside to the beach below the falls, where we took a few more photos.

By the time we finished, though, we had just over an hour to get back to the lodge  so Jen and I could help with the dinner prep. We didn't take nearly as many photos on the way down, but we still took a few.

We made it back with about ten minutes to spare—just time enough to wash up and get upstairs.


Andrew said...

You know, climbing up hills via tree roots is one of the more amusing things that can happen on a hike. :P It does depend on what sort of root though.

So does the lake have any sort of access from the ocean? It doesn't look like it from the map - but I wonder how many air-trips it took to build everything that's up there now. I expect a lot.

Anonymous said...

I had a sudden picture of you speaking at a convention years from now, and a fan asking, "Was the scene where Alianya used tree roots to climb the mountain while she was fleeing the Vrenul inspired by your time in Alaska?" I call dibs on those names though.

Audrey said...

Or, perhaps you will be speaking at the convention, and I can get up to say I helped inspire your story by providing the situation which you used to invent your really cool names. Knowing you, I suspect Alianya was doing something she shouldn't have, which got her in trouble with the Vrenul, who...

Anonymous said...

As tempting as is it to follow up that ellipsis, I know better than to start down, or in this case, up that trail. Maybe in a few years I'll find out what's at the top. But I'm shocked, shocked! at the suggestion that my heroine would do something she shouldn't!

Audrey said...

My apologies--I did not intend any defamation of character, but wanted to suggest that your heroine is likely to be of a more adventurous type.

For the record, Anna does not climb up cliffs, but only falls off them. That's one of the problems of wandering around in the woods at night, which we were told not to do here--at least not alone.

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