Can You Dig It…


Jasper & Gypsy...Jasper found a varmint hole.  Curious about the critter inside, he started to dig deeper…  and deeper…




Until finally he was quite satisfied with what he had done.












Aoife took a closer look.








Being one sharp smeller, Aoife was sure the varmint lay just beyond reach in that hole. There was no convincing her otherwise.

Aoife was going in…







Surely it was a near escape.



Hatcher’s Pass, July 13th …Can You Dig It?




Weekend In Seward…


Seward Highway...


The ride to Seward is 127 miles of gorgeous and the final destination is nothing short of divine.

My friend has a comfy cabin tucked away on a wooded lot very close to the beach and mountains that border Resurrection Bay.  So together we had a weekend to explore paradise…




The Beach at closer look…



…was home to many points of light.



As always, I got stuck on the little things…



This one was washed up already; …the fate of many.



Stirling’s first experience on a saltwater beach…


DSC_0300…where he tried to catch the waves.



Because the tide was so high, we cut through the woods…



The trees had plush moss-muffs on their branches that stay green throughout the winter.



This water may have been fresh, as separated from the bulk of it.



We walked for 3.5 hours…



Stirling played hard…



Until even so full of boundless energy, he just had to stop and take pause.



In the end and for once in his life, Stirling was tired.

A tired terrier is a good terrier.



…Nancy Nibbe, thank you for spoiling us rotten.



One Is Like None. Two Are Like Ten…




“One is like none.  Two are like ten…”

Many years ago my sister said this of children.  But did I follow her advice?  Absolutely not.  I had the second child, and all was well with the world.  Two felt like little more than two.  Now I cannot speak for others, as all children are so different…






DSC_0130Now I have the Kerries, and I think it may be obvious that I am all about them.  But I will confess that each is better one-on-one.  In a pair all sorts of inescapable naughtiness breaks out.




Although they know well the meaning of the “sit” command both verbally and in sign, when together they construe this as a bid to share in turn taking.  And “stay” is reduced to something more along the line of hesitate.  And their social graces with other dogs flies straight out the window, especially while together on the trails.  So this dog walking thing can actually be quite an exasperating workout.


Trees, Now Bare...There should be something peaceful about a dog walk, I should think.  And sometimes that is the case.  So just yesterday I was set on enjoying our walk.  I truly dislike ordering commands the whole time, so I was determined to stick with the attitude of less-is-more.


DSC_0178But out of nowhere Stirling was pulling ambitiously at the end of his retractable lead.  I brought him back to me and quietly took him by the beard to have a serious conversation about the trouble with pulling me down the airstrip.  He looked back into my eyes with full humility, and a promise of doing better.  ‘Quite convincing.


Aoife…But a quick glance over my shoulder proved Aoife was devouring a ripe lush chunk of horse manure.

Now moose nuggets are on the menu, though the pack is limited to one morsel each per pile.  But horse briquettes well-known for the laxative effect are strictly prohibited.  I am quite certain my girl knows that, and I am not at all convinced there wasn’t a conspiracy between them.







Termination Dust…


The first snow capped the tops of our higher peaks this afternoon.  From there it will gradually move down the mountains and eventually pile up at our doors & windows, and roof – if we are lucky!

Termination Dust


When this swamp freezes over a whole new trail network of adventure will open up to the pack.  We will have our winter wonderland back!

Oh!  How I love this place…






Mudder Dog…





Now, I can admit I am more of a winter girl.  I have nothing against the sun or an occasional hot day, or even the rain.  …But winter is a much cleaner season!




Aoife in Heaven

But someone in our pack loves the mud.  And a rainy day in August would be one of her favorites…






Mud Goddess...

Mud Goddess…


Today we returned to the Tank Trail.  It is an off-leash venue for dogs, but we avoid it most of the time as it draws a healthy crowd.  But 8:00AM on a Sunday in the rain, we had the trail pretty much to ourselves.  …Although we did walk up on a momma moose with her young-un, and that was a little tricky.



On the way home, Aoife rides shotgun…

...Day Dreaming about her adventures

…Day Dreaming about her adventures




What Are We Do’n?


“The important thing in life is not to triumph but to compete.”  -Pierre de Coubertin


Sunday Morning: 6:30AM, January 5th

…After hours of near-sleepless travel our Kerry Pack made its way into the Orlando International Airport (MCO).  All things considered, the trip had been uneventful with a bit of rough turbulence at the start followed by hours of half-sleep in the semi-seated near-paralized position.  Finally we were reunited at baggage claim.  Aoife & Stirling were dazed and confused, but cooperative – and believe it or not, quiet.  Each had made the 13 hours without soiling their crates, and they held on for still another length of time while I secured our rental vehicle.

I had planned to rent a mini-van and have the seats removed, but the Alamo representative looked at me as if I had three-heads.  She informed me of the fortune it would cost me if I chose to tamper with the seats, and invited me to rent from the Dollar Rentals [her hand motioned to my right].  …Now this was no big deal really, except I had the good fortune of securing a porter to assist me with my travel lot, and he was patiently waiting with my precious cargo.  The Dollar Rental line was long, so out we went to the Alamo lot to off load the porter’s cart.

At least a half-hour and 3 vehicles later we were ready to give up.  Neither one of us could figure out how to flatten the seats in these vehicles, and at the best configuration we literally had a large crate sticking half out the side door.  I really should have grabbed my camera, but I sensed I was pressing my luck with this porter.  He had gotten himself into far more than he ever bargained for, I’m sure.  So we unloaded with the intent of my joining the Dollar Rental line, while relieving the porter of his duty.  But as it were another person came along and showed us how to flatten the seats, and so we parted with our mission accomplished.

But talk about tired…  And although I could go on and on about how we’ve spent the last three days, I won’t.  At least not at this time.


But in the meantime, back in Alaska the -dales have found adventure of their own:

Image 2

Image 7


Image 3

Image 1


Image 6

Image 5

Image 10




Our Beaver…

This summer has been delightful, and unseasonably warm for Alaska.  One ‘ole fella I fell in line behind at the grocery store noted it was the warmest summer he’d seen in his 72 years.

…Besides all of that our life has changed a bit with the addition of Stirling, being our 4th terrier.  Stirling is a wonder-dog in so many ways; but he is also a bit of a dink where it comes to other dogs, …especially the little ones.

And added to that, our Gypsy seems to have been afflicted by a shoulder injury.  The particulars on that are unclear, but she seems to be doing better with a steroid injection and relative rest.

So by comparison, I’d say our former life was more carefree.  Now instead of ramming the country side off leash with GPS collars, at least two of our pack are on leash at all times.  Besides that I’ve got Stirling in organized classes once or twice a week, which takes us off the trails altogether.


The Rickety Bridge…So this summer our fall-back dog-walk has been straight out our front door across a small field and stream onward towards a small pond at the edge of a near neighborhood.  This walk is low on adventure, unless you consider a rickety bridge that’s Duck buddiesthreatening to collapse on one end, or the fact that the little pond is infested with wildlife.


In fact that brings me to the point of this thread.  We’ve been watching a beaver in the small pond all summer.  Now beavers have a reputation in Alaska for baiting dogs into the water, and then being quite destructive on their soft under-bellies.  Aoife, for one, absolutely loves water of all kinds.  And maybe I’m gullible, but I wouldn’t want to test that rumor.  So we carefully enjoy these rather large rascals from a respectable distance.  As you might figure from one who is so respected; this beaver doesn’t hesitate to make himself known to our pack.  In fact, Mark tells me one day our beaver ran across the trail right in front of him and the -dales!

Beaver's Water Swirl

So this day I decided to take my camera; and we half expected to get disappointed as is sometimes the case when you take one.  But low and behold, our friend was waiting in his usual place…

Beaver on green water