My Alaska Highlight Reel
Happy Sunday Wanderers! As requested by you guys by a poll on Instagram stories, this post is about my time recently spent in Alaska. I thought about doing a post on my favorite day in Alaska but I wanted to go a little bit more in depth so I decided to do a highlight real of my whole trip. I have broken this blog up into sections so you can beeline to the parts that most interest you. I spent about a week and a half visiting my best friend in Palmer, Alaska from the end of October to the beginning of November. I was told many times that this is not the ideal time to visit. August is actually the most recommended time to visit as the days are long and the climate is at it's height of warmth. While I was there we enjoyed chilly days where the sunshine lasted from about 10am to 5pm daily. We had a mix of both clear days and days where the fog was so thick you couldn't even see the mountains. There was one light snowfall in Palmer before I left, but there was more snow up north.
Although I knew that I wasn't visiting at peak-season, that wasn't really the purpose for my visit anyway. I hadn't seen my best friend since June when we traveled to Italy with my family and we were definitely overdue to spend some time together. Also I had yet to meet her new puppy Turnip, pictured above. Turnip and I also enjoyed our quality time snuggling and playing while Geneva worked in the mornings. When we weren't adventuring we enjoyed celebrating halloween with friends, binge watching the office, and cooking vegan meals together. I can honestly say that visiting friends and family is one of my preferred ways to travel. The benefits include, a local to show you around, free lodging, and time spent with a loved one that lives far away.
During my time in Alaska Geneva and I visited two breweries, Girdwood Brewery and Bleeding Heart Brewery in Palmer. Most of the pictures above are from Girdwood as that was my favorite of the two due to it's more spacious layout and overall better interior and exterior decorating that added to the vibe. Let me just say that both breweries had exceptional staff and great local brews. I loved how Girdwood had their list of beers displayed on skis and the adorable outdoor area with the fire pit and ski lift chair. There I tried two $2.00 4oz taster glasses. I got the IP-AK, their citrusy and hoppy house IPA and Down the Chute, their crisp and refreshing Kulsch. Not surprisingly I preferred the IPA and I left with a 25oz can of it for just $7.00. Pretty killer. I also was interested in purchasing one of their glasses but the worker said he'd give me a glass with a minor paint defect for free, how cute?
At Bleeding heart brewery I got the "StrawBooby" Pink pale ale. It's a Pacific Northwest style pale "dry Hopped" with local strawberries; 6.8% ABV 50 IBU. They make it every October in Honor of Breast Cancer Awareness and donate half of the proceeds from the sales to the local breast cancer center in Anchorage. This beer is pictured above all the way to the right. It was delicious and I ended up purchasing two 12oz glasses for $20.00 total. Normally their 12oz brews are $6.00 but this one was a specialty smaller batch. I also loved that it was helping benefit a great local cause. My only negative remark on this brewery is that there wasn't enough space. It did have a very cozy vibe because of this, but I would recommend coming on the earlier side if you want to grab a table or seat.
Overall I would recommend both breweries for anyone looking to support local business in Alaska and try some great beers.
As many of you know, Geneva and I can't help ourselves from going out to get vegan food whenever we are together. We went to Middle Way Café in Anchorage and Vagabond Blues Café in Palmer twice each. We always love to order a couple of things to share when we go out so we get to try more things. Pictured above left to right are the Unicorn Bowl , a Vegan Avocado Melt, the Baja Bowl, two vegan cupcakes and a vegan molasses cookie. I'll go into more detail of what we ate at each café below including some items that are not pictured.
Middle Way Café:
Unicorn Bowl: Basil cauliflower rice, spinach, kale, black beans, carrot ribbons, salsa fresca & "unicorn sauce" $11.50
Vegan Avocado Melt: avocado, roma tomato, red onion, gomasio, vegan mayo & vegan mozzarella $12.25
Baja Bowl: Cashew nacho cheese, vegan sour cream, brown rice, black beans, lettuce, red cabbage, avocado & cilantro $11.50
We also got these cute halloween cupcakes the day after Halloween for half off!
Vagabond Blues Café:
The Bella Panini (vegan version): Portobello mushrooms, steamed spinach, caramelized onions, grilled red pepper, & balsamic vinaigrette on focaccia bread $13.50
Here we also tried a few of their soups, they have a vegan option available daily. Geneva's favorites include split pea, mexi-corn, and their tortilla soup! Cup (8oz)-$4.49 Bowl (16oz)-$7.99
Lastly, you can see Geneva's excitement in the picture all the way to the right of their monstrous vegan molasses cookie. These were super soft and melt in your mouth good.
A picture is worth a thousand words right? As you can see Alaska is gorgeous. My friend lives in the valley so even just cruising around town we were always surrounded by a gorgeous mountain view. We also enjoyed incredible views from Hatcher's Pass Lodge and on our road trip up to Chena Hot Springs where we passed through Denali and Fairbanks. Unfortunately it was dark in the evening and in the morning when we went to the hot spring itself so I don't have a picture but let me tell you there was nothing quite like dipping in a natural hot spring before the sun came up on that calm and snowy morning.
Follow the mentioned local businesses on IG!
I hope you enjoyed this post! Leave me a comment below and let me know what you think. As always, remember to wander often & wonder always.