Though our glacier trek was complete, we still had plenty of other adventures to look forward to. We planned for Friday morning to be slower paced assuming that we would still be fatigued from our previous day’s jaunt. We had breakfast at the Sandpiper Café, then wandered around town a little.
At 12:30 we were scheduled to meet a shuttle at the Mount Roberts Tramway. There we met our guides who took us to Douglas Island for zip-lining. The company was Alaska Zipline Adventures at the time, but has since changed to Kawanti Adventures. They operate out of Eaglecrest Ski area during the off season.
When we arrived at the ski lodge we stored our personal affects, aside from our small camera, and were given rain coats and helmets. Then we headed outside to be fitted with harnesses and to be given a short lesson on what to expect up in the canopy. Each harness had a different animal name etched into it’s buckle.
I had zip-lined a couple of times before, once in an indoor course and once through the rainforest in Costa Rica. This was my hubby’s first time to zip-line. Needless to say, we were both really excited. There were only four of us in our group, plus our two tour guides. Our guides were friendly and a lot of fun. They were also knowledgeable and helpful, which always sets your mind at ease in these types of scenarios. This course didn’t require any hand breaking which is nice, because without enough experience you could easily be injured.
Right before each turn my stomach would become full of excited, and slightly nervous, butterflies. However, once I stepped off the platform and began the thrilling ride, the beauty would be so breathtaking, all nerves would fade away. The course comprised of 7 zip-lines and a suspension bridge. As we progressed through the course our guides encouraged us to be more brave, and a little silly. We tried out different “poses” and tricks as we zipped across the rainforest. At one point my hubby was upside down, unfortunately I wasn’t quick enough to capture it with the camera. Towards the end of the course we stopped in one of the tree house platforms for some warm rooibos tea and enjoyed the view. It was a little chilly so the warm beverage was a welcome treat.
When we finished the course, our adventure wasn’t over. We walked over to the “axe throwing” area. I’ll be honest, when I booked our tour this was just an afterthought, but Oh Wow it was a lot fun! We each had a few opportunities to throw the ole axe. We even managed to hit the targets! Well some of the times, anyways. If you ever get the opportunity, I highly recommend axe throwing. After we finished we headed back to the ski lodge. We were offered snacks and watched a slide show of the pictures taken by the guides. There was an option to purchase the pictures if we wanted, but we had taken our own pictures so we declined.
Afterwards we were shuttled back across the Gastineau Chanel, to the Mount Roberts Tram. Originally we planned to go do a beer tasting at a brewery, but my husband really wanted to go explore more of Mount Roberts. Since it was our last full day in Juneau, and we figured we could drink beer anytime, in the tram we went! On a sign it mentioned Gastineau Peak was only 1.5 miles away, so we made that our destination. We came across a few creatures along the way. A few of birds, and my favorite was the marmot. When we first encountered him, he appeared to be very serious. Then he turned to look at us, and became quite comical looking.
The view was gorgeous. We continued climbing higher and higher, even through clouds. Still we didn’t come across Gastineau Peak. Because we did not originally plan for this hike, we didn’t bring along water, hiking boots, heavier jackets…rain gear. The clouds began to rain on us. The rocks were becoming slick and the dirt was now becoming mud. It felt like we had gone much further than 1.5 miles. I’m a person who enjoys spontaneity, but I like to have supplies handy so that I’m prepared for all possibilities, and we didn’t…I’m embarrassed to admit I got a little grumpy.
I’m also stubborn, so we pushed on a little further because I figured if we went this far so we might as well see it! But we never did find it. For all we knew we had passed it 2 miles ago. We were supposed to be off the trails by sunset, so we started back down the mountain. As we descended down the trail, I got over my bad mood. To this day I am so very grateful we did go back up the mountain. It was so beautiful and we got some great photographs. It’s also a memory we laugh about now.
We took the tram down and headed over to the famous Red Dog Saloon. It had the old timey swinging saloon doors and the floors were covered in saw dust. We ate dinner and enjoyed some local Alaskan beers. We wanted to check out the Juneau night life, so we stopped in a couple of other bars on our way home. We didn’t stay out too late, because the next day we were on the move again!