Windsurfing Photo © Jerrianne Lowther

Flat Stanley Visits Alaska
By Stanley Lambchop

Photo © Jerrianne Lowther; Stanley's parka & mukluks by Sharon Paul Nault
Flat Stanley waves to Miss Kitty, who watches out the window.

I got "snowed in," in Anchorage, Alaska! Last week the ski season began at Mt. Alyeska. Soon the ice will be thick enough to be safe for ice skating and the snow will be deep enough for good snowmobiling. (They call it snowmachining in Alaska.) Miss Kitty has already informed me that she doesn't ski or skate or snowmobile. I don't think she builds snowmen or snow forts or likes snowball fights, either -- and you don't even want to hear her opinions about sled dog races!

Snow is fun for kids. I like sliding down covered hills on a sled or toboggan or anything else that will slide over the snow. Miss Kitty likes to watch me out the window. She showed me the place in a birch tree where a Mama Robin built a nest last spring and laid eggs in it and raised a family of baby robins. The nest is gone now, blown away in a storm, and the crotch of the tree where the nest was is full of snow. But if you click here, you can see Miss Kitty's story about the robins.

Photo © Jerrianne Lowther
Miss Kitty showed me where a robin built a nest last spring.

Water everywhere!

Sometimes I think Alaska is all about water -- and ice and snow. Alaska is the only state that is bordered by two oceans. There's the Pacific Ocean -- same as Texas, but a lot colder so far north ---- and the Arctic Ocean, where polar bears live on the sea ice. Alaska has three million lakes. The Yukon River starts in Canada and flows clear across the whole state to the Bering Sea, the place where the two oceans meet. The Yukon River is as long as the Mississippi River -- 2,300 miles.

Some of Alaska's rivers are made of ice and are called glaciers. They flow ver-r-r-r-y slowly down the mountainsides, making their way to lakes or rivers or the sea. When pieces of ice break off and fall into water they are called icebergs. They float with just their tops showing above the water.

Alaska doesn't have many roads, and only one railroad, so Alaskans get around their big state in airplanes, in boats, on all terrain vehicles (ATVs) -- and on snowmachines (snowmobiles) in the winter. Before winter arrived, Miss Kitty showed me around some interesting places to visit.

Photos © Jerrianne Lowther
We visited scenic Turnagain Arm and watched for Beluga whales. In the spring people fish for little fish with dipnets. In the summer, they fish for salmon -- and they catch them, too!

Photos © Jerrianne Lowther
We boarded a tour boat to see Portage Glacier, icy and blue.

Photos © Jerrianne Lowther
When a piece of ice falls into the water, left; it makes a big splash, right.

Photo © Jerrianne Lowther
Icebergs float about in Portage Lake with only their tops showing.

Click here to see the iCards I sent back to Nick in Texas.

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