This whole trip we've been worried about my chain. It seems to be gaining slack at an inch per day. So every couple days it starts flopping so badly I have to adjust it. It's simple enough to do, but it has me worried about how long my chain will last. And after the off-road Dalton Highway... I can FEEL how bad my chain is. We left Fairbanks for our final stretch to get to the girls, and I decided that I'm going to replace it in anchorage. And 20 miles out of town, that's when the chain breaks. But alas, not my chain, Dad's broke!
This is our first significant problem. And we were just outside cell phone range of Fairbanks. Before we left, when Dad told me he was bringing a spare chain... I thought "wow, overkill." That's a lot of weight for something we won't need. Chains don't break. But then his did. And at this point, having a spare around comforted me since my chain felt os bad. Well, it took some doing, and 1 hour 40 minutes of time, but he got the spare on. And, cautiously, we were on our way.
We quickly caught up to Denali National Park, where Mt. McKinley rests. This would be the beautiful part of our ride. Nope. That's when the rain started. The ice cold rain. We rode through 3 hours of cold rain. The longest rain and coldest we'd felt on our trip so far. McKinley was shrouded in clouds. And ok, it was still beautiful, but my numb fingers didn't allow me to enjoy it much.
The minutes seemed like hours. Finally, just a few turns away from the cabin, and we had to climb a gravel hill that rivaled the most difficult roads we'd been on over the last week. We missed our turn, came around again and found it... And finally, there she was.
I'm elated to be here. Back with Julie, at our cabin overlooking the bay. It looks like it's snowing outside with little pieces of cotton floating around our cabin. It will be a nice week.