Marten 24 Hour Stay-Cation

I feel the adult equivalent of taking a ‘time out’ is running away to a cabin on a Wednesday afternoon, and telling your boss you will see them sometime Thursday afternoon.

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Even if January was the first snowfall-less January since 1942, at least out the road still has snow on the ground. Town has been looking pretty bleak on the snow front, so it was nice to see some snow driving out the road to Eagle Beach.

In Juneau you will run into plenty of people who’s weekends fall on random days. Having so many people in the tourist industry, fishermen, people in the private sector, and of course our various pilots and captains. My boyfriend Plett happens to be a pilot, so his weekend is Wednesday and Thursday. So, seizing his weekend and not having to worry about compete with other campers, we booked the Marten cabin at Eagle Beach.

I will say, this is the first time I have ever camped out there, and I wasn’t even completely sure where the cabin was. But, thankfully a little wooden sign pointed us off the main trail and into the woods on the left. We passed plenty of fire pits, so I’m guessing that in the summer there are plenty of families that come here for some less extreme camping. And personally, I am so happy that there is some amount of ‘car camping’ options in town for families – and those of us that want to be lazy.

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I will say that the cabin was a little smaller than I was expecting, having been in so many other Forest Service cabins. But, the audience of these cabins are probably single families, not adults and 10 of their friends plus a dog or two. There was a nice little nordic stove, though it was slightly different than the one in Cowee. Plett took the three gallons of fuel and put it in the fuel tank out back, and we lit the stove and for a while I snuggled for warmth. I know I was only 20 minutes out of town, but the temperature was colder out the road, and the cabin took a lot longer to heat up than I was expecting. I probably should have warn warmer bottoms, but I was lazy and didn’t bring an extra change of clothes. But I did totally remember my slippers!

And food, we for sure remembered the food. You could say that the theme of our trip was ‘nom nom nom’. Sure, I forgot warm clothes, but he brought the steaks, and I didn’t forget the mushrooms, onion, sweet potatoes or carrots, so let’s focus on the important things in life. Plett marinated the steaks for several hours, and while he cooked on the fireplace, I fired up my Primus stove and set to boiling the carrots (with butter), mashing sweet potatoes (with butter), and then sauteing the mushrooms and onions in butter to smother our steak. All in all, it was a pretty fantastic meal, probably the best steak I have ever had.

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Something every camping adventure should never be without is tea light candles as these little guys are indispensable. They don’t take up much room, the trash is very minimal to pack home, and honestly using headlamps just isn’t the same mood lighting as these candles.

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I did pack along my parent’s Othello game, because you know, I had to hike a whole mile into the woods. This is the first time I have ever taken a board game with me, but this is also the first time that it has ever just been me and one other person. Usually I take my Uno deck, and we play and get rowdy. But this trip was much more about having some nice quiet time. I have to say though, don’t take a board game expecting to win. Plett had never played Othello, and unfortunately he is very good. I took it expecting to crush him, but I didn’t win a single game.

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After such a filling dinner, breakfast was a simple scramble that of course had some bacon.

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We ended up lounging around after breakfast. I have to admit that I even took a short nap. I was slow to pack, as we weren’t in any hurry. We drank some tea, sat around, nibbled on food, then eventually packed up and headed to the car. The walk out was very nice, and maybe next time I will rent the cabin on the river. Though I did like being back in the woods in the snow. But I think summer camping on the river will be beautiful, when everything is green and maybe some flowers are in bloom. Kiska will sure enjoy the sandy beach at low tide. Though I hear there are bears that like to hang out here, so for sure be bear safe and keep food cleaned up.

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About Courtney

Juneau, Alaska local.
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