No, We Didn’t Win the Lottery

After reading about all of the adventures we’ve had this summer, you must be thinking we hit the lottery. I mean, really, who could afford to do all of those things?

Links go to the blog post I wrote about the adventure.

Two glacier cruises…

Kenai Fjords Glacier Cruise-7651
Our cruise with Kenai Fjords Tours
Our cruise with Major Marine

Two Helicopter tours…

Marathon Helicopter-8414
Marathon Helicopter tour
Seward Helo Dog Sled-8646
Seward Helicopter Tours

Dog sledding…

Seward Helo Dog Sled-8662
Turning Heads Kennel


Rafting with Alaska River Adventures

Took the tram…

Alyeska Tram-8545
Riding the Tram

Visited the wildlife center

Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center

And did sight seeing on our own…

Whittier Glacier Cruise-8041


Kenai NWR-8737




Drive From Anchorage-7268

11 1/2 week old eagle in Homer




One thing I haven’t written much about is the fact we are working. For May, June and most of July, we worked full time, 40 hours a week. We are the “On Site Hosts” at the Spruce Moose Chalets in Moose Pass. What does an on site host do, you ask? Well, lots of things. But one of the major things we do is be an ambassador for the area. Chalet guests come from all over the world and want to have the best experiences possible. But how can we recommend an excursion if we haven’t tried it ourselves? Would you recommend a restaurant you’ve never eaten at? No! So what I did was contact all of these businesses and explained to them we would be here for the summer and wanted to be able to tell our guests about our adventures. I asked if they would be willing to give us a discount in exchange for our testimony. Simple as that! Nearly every place I contacted offered us a deal and discounts varied from place to place.  We never would have been able to afford to do all these things if I hadn’t been able to leverage our position as the on site host.

I still have one more post to write (maybe two) about our time but I am pretty much caught up. Finally!

Our job contract here is almost up. We will be leaving Moose Pass on Sept. 4th, but our adventures are far from over! We are heading up to Denali for a week (where we have an interview for a job next summer), then we will be heading down to Haines for 4 days. I have mapped out a pretty ambitious trip back to Florida, 4 National Parks and lots of cool sights along the way. I hope you continue to follow our adventures!

We’d love to hear your comments!

22 thoughts on “No, We Didn’t Win the Lottery”

  1. I love the way you think! At this very moment, Stephen and I are sitting having coffee in our Toy Hauler in RI, a few more weeks here with family and we are on the road to travel and ride the motorcycle down south until Darren graduates bootcamp. Thank you for all the inspiration!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I have enjoyed following you along on your Alaska adventures. It must have been really fun meeting all those visitors from around the world. And very smart of you to contact those tour companies to negotiate a deal on the tours. Glad to hear you are going to Haines. We loved Haines!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. WOW, how time flies. From your posts you have had a wonderful time there. And more to come in the future. Hope to see you again when you come back to the 48 on you way back to Florida. Always have fun.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. The 14 years I spent in the Alaskan tourism industry not only allowed me to explore the state, but also save money and have time off to travel the world. It is a great gig! I am glad you enjoyed it and had such amazing experiences. The fall colors should be awesome in Denali – get up there as soon as you can before they fade!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. The first thing I’d do is take a tour bus in the park to Eilson Visitor Center or Wonder Lake. The fall colors will be just past peak, but still awesome, out in the backcountry.

        The fall colors in the lower front country, especially the aspens, will hit peak about Sept 8 to 15. Otto Lake, near Healy, is gorgeous. If you can drive down the Denali Highway to Paxson I’d recommend it. That are a is just as stunning as the park, but you can camp along the road in multiple places.


  5. I think it is fabulous that you were able to negotiate deals with the adventure companies. Besides being able to tell your guests you also have them great publicity here! I shall look forward to your travels ahead.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Now that’s an industrious way to secure a few adventures without breaking the bank! If we ever sign on to become camp hosts or plan other summer jobs like this from our RV, I will remember your advice. Was your summer work as hosts paid, or was it an exchange work for free accommodation? And, you are sure driving some distances there, from Alaska to Florida. And, back again next summer? Wow. Until then, enjoy the warm weather.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. After the first 15 hours (which paid for our spot), we made $13/hr each. The money was good and if you add on all the benefits, like guests leaving refrigerators full of food or giving us all the salmon they caught, we really made out well! Top it off with all of our free or discounted adventures and it just can’t be beat. We haven’t firmed up our 2019 plans completely, but we are heading back to southwest Texas in early March to hit a bucket list place – Big Bend NP. We have a tentative job in Wisconsin, starting in June. We’ll see!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It was the first 7.5 hours per week, per person. It varies wildly depending on the place. I’ve seen it as low as 5 hours per person and as high as 20 hours. A lot depends on how much time you are willing to “give up” for the space and how many additional paid hours are available. We rely on our income for living so we need the paid hours. If your situation is different, there are LOTS of places you can volunteer at. The biggest up side is you get a free space at a place you want to visit anyhow 🙂 If you have other workamping questions, feel free to reach out to me at

        Liked by 1 person

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