A Darker View

As it is my father’s favorite place to eat in Juneau, I expect to be having dinner at The Hanger this evening. Our usual stop after a day of checking the boat and shopping for supplies. It is just a few hops down the waterfront from the harbor where the Nordic Quest is docked, a great place to grab a bite after a busy day.

Fred Cooper

Fred Cooper enjoying a drink before dinner

The Hanger really is built in a hanger, a seaplane hanger that once serviced the aircraft of Alaska Coastal Airlines from the 1940′s on. Coastal Airways was purchased by Alaska Airlines in 1968. The planes of Wings of Alaska use the dock below the old hanger as the starting point for their ice field scenic flights. Today the building looks out on the busy harbor in front of downtown Juneau. While just down the waterfront the huge steel walls of the cruise ships block most of the view, here it is unobstructed.

The Kitchen

A dish waiting to be served from The Hangers kitchen

A long area with windows onto the harbor greet you after entering. About half the space is a regular dining area, with the other half set up in a bar format. You can choose to dine on an outside deck overlooking the harbor in good weather. There is also a loft with a couple pool tables upstairs. The kitchen sits to one side of the dining area, you can wander over and see the dishes being prepared. This is where you second guess your order as you see what is sitting on the counter waiting to be served.

The Hanger

Dining in The Hanger, Juneau

As one would expect, seafood dishes are the specialty of the house. There is a good selection of non-seafood as well if you prefer a steak or burger. This is not diet food, most dishes are rich and tasty. Expect it to be busy during the summer months, we ended up sitting in the bar area last time.

Dinner in Juneau is a chance to sit and relax a bit. We can plan any remaining details that must be accomplished before we break dock, or consider the weather and the first day or two of cruising. The details involved in getting the boat ready seem endless, but at this point most of the list has been completed. It is a chance to sit and converse about the voyage ahead, a glimpse forward to a week spent with family.

Arrival in Juneau is always pleasant. This is a very small airport, far smaller than even Kona or Hilo. As a result there are no long lines, no mile long walk to the rental car agency, no shuttle vans or snarled traffic awaiting once you do free yourself from the terminal. Walk from the gate down one flight of stairs to the single baggage claim. Forty feet from the luggage you find the rental desks, where you pick up a key and walk out into the parking lot just outside the terminal for your vehicle. As you load your luggage you can turn and see the plane sitting just the other side of the fence. A complete contrast to our experience with the enormous labyrinth that is SEA or PDX.

The jet was a 737-800 Combi model, the front half was air cargo, with a bulkhead just over the wing. We boarded and debarked by walking across the tarmac to stairs at the tail of the plane. I expect to walk across the flightline in Kona, but at SeaTac?!

Alaska Air Combi

Alaska Air flight 61 unloads cargo and passengers in Juneau


A valve on a cattle tank along Mana Road

Rough-Spined Urchin

A rough-spined urchin (Chondrocidaris gigantea) beside the wreck of the naked Lady at 110′

This evening a very thin crescent Moon will meet Jupiter low in the sunset glow. Only 3.4% illuminated the Moon will be 6° west of a bright Jupiter. About 16° above the horizon at sunset, the Moon will set at 20:14HST with Jupiter setting a few minutes later at 20:20HST. The two should create a striking pair in the rosy glow of dusk.

Over the next few days Venus will swing just north of the Hyades star cluster. On the 30th Venus will be just over a degree north of εTau and just over four degrees from Aldebaran.

Subaru in the Snow

Subaru opens for a night of observing


A kiʻi looks over the rocky shoreline at Puʻuhonua O Hōnaunau

Young Moon

A very young moon over Waikoloa, this is only 26 hours after new, visible to the unaided eye as a sliver in the fading glow of sunset

New Moon will occur today at 22:08HST.

Continue reading New Moon…

Another great video from my friend Dan Birchall. There are more opportunities to see multiple lasers on the galactic center in coming months. I hope to get up and do some more shooting of my own.