Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Fairbanks on Tuesday

Another day around this fine city. Beautiful weather, except for some sprinkles in the evening. It was the first day of our tour, we met the bus at 10 and went to Gold Dredge #8. We learned how to gold pan, with Bret the big winner at $21 worth of gold flakes.  Bryn got $18, Reed and Randy each got $9.   We also learned about how the dredge works, and how it takes 9,000 gallons per minute to run a water cannon for hydraulic mining. We walked under the Alaska pipeline to see the gold dredging area.  Next we went to have a group lunch with miners food such as beef stew and baking soda biscuits. Lance Mackey, 4-time winner of the Iditerod and 4-time winner of the Yukon Quest races, was there to say some inspirational words about dogsledding.  We boarded the Discovery III paddlewheeler and cruised down the Chena River, watching a pontoon plane take off and land, and stopping for a dogsled demonstration.  We got off to tour a recreated Athabaskan village, complete with birchbark baskets, various animal furs, and clothing.   In the evening, we ate pizza in our room and watched the baseball All Star game.

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