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Day 289 - July 17
So, where's this hot and sunny weather the interiors famous for in the summer? Since I put back in at the haul road bridge I've only had two days without rain. Fortunately there hasn't been much wind, but boy o boy am I damp. After awhile even the stuff in your dry bags get damp. It plays on your mind for sure.

The last two weeks or so I've been in the company of a lot of Christians. I ran in to a group of kids going to a bible college in North Pole run by Pastor "Papa Bear" Ron. Actually they're young adults hoping to be preachers or evangelists. They are associated with the Assembly of God. They were in Skagway a few years ago too. First met them at Circle, then at the haul bridge and then in Tanana. Shared a campsite with them in Tanana. Good folks. We prayed together and gave testimony. It was a good day and night. The day I left I met the owner of Kokrane Hills Bible Camp whose camp is 65 miles down river from Tanana. Two days later I was there guest for the evening. They have some of the sweetest tasting water around. Of course it's not as good as Skagway water but it's definiely better than anything else I've had on the trip. The Bible Camp was burglarized and vandalized this spring. Franklin Graham visited there in JUne and like what he saw so much he pledged a hundred thousand dollars to help out with improvements and restoring what was lost. Cool beans man! It's a low cost camp for native children in the region. It's very popular up here. Another good program. Then, in Ruby where I spent a few days because of weather I attended a Friday night evangelical hootenany with Reverend Arnold. He's a singing native evangelist and a huge fan of God and Jesus. Again, a good time was had by all. I think God is angry with me because I keep asking for better paddling weather and he keeps saying.."Son, you need to experience this first". So, I'm getting really good at staying wet and sneezing. Owoooooooooooooooooooooooh! I hear were losing another good preacher. Preacher Bob from Presby is taking off. I like him and will miss him and his family. Just wish there was more happening to keep these good folks in town, ya know?

I'm in Galena today. It's raining and the forecast for the next 4-5 days is more rain. It slows me down. Can only handle about 7 hours a day of rain and then I pull off and make camp and try to dry off. Mainly, I just get in my bag and stay warm that way. Sure glad I live in the patch and not up here. It can get down right chilly in the summer, just imagine what its like in the winter!

The stuff I heard about villagers not liking white people and them being rude is not true at all. I've found everyone and town to be friendly and helpful. My favorite towns in AK along the river are Tanana, Beaver, Ruby and Eagle. Rampart's not really a town but it was cool too. Haven't met anyone that likes George Bush either.

Looks like I have 800 miles to go to Kotlik. It's taken me four days to go the last 70 miles. At this rate I won't be home until October. The weather will get better, right? Anyway. All in all things are going ok. Can't wait to get back home. Until next time. ta ta

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