Saturday June 30th 2012
I posted 5 blogs today so be sure to check them all out.
Mike and I have been planning our retirement for many years. One of our dreams was to live and travel the United States in our Motorhome. It came true the end of Dec. 2007. Mike is 64 and I'm younger. We travel with our cats Stormy, better known as Evil Kitty and Lucy a new addition in 2011. Lucy is known as the good kitty. We could not imagin living any where but in our MH. After almost 5 years on the road we enjoy it as much as when we started.
Thursday June 28th 2012
Our first stop in Alaska was Chicken, everyone stops in Chicken, not sure why but is a must do.
Population of 23 in the summer, 7 in the winter, 3 commercial businesses. Chicken was supposedly named by early miners who wanted to name their camp ptarmigan, but were unable to spell it and settled instead for chicken, the common name in the North for ptarmigan.
The best place to stop is Beautiful downtown Chicken which is the second stop in Chicken. There is no city water, sewer or electric service in town. Generators and outhouses are used here.
You have to love the chicken poop, so cool.
Santa comes to town in a chicken sleigh.
Everything in Chicken is chicken related, go into the gift shop and you can buy anything to do with chickens. The saloon was not open when we got here but you could leave a hat for them to hang. Mike missed a chance at being bartender here.
We only spent an hour or so here but we sure had a good time. It was off to Tok for the night. Mike sure makes a cute eskimo
Wednesday June 27th 2012
Yes 23 days on the road and we made it to Alaska, what a fun time getting here. I’m so glad we decided to go to Alaska this year, we have been putting off for 5 years now. My dad always told us do it while your young enough to really enjoy it, and enjoying it we are. I’m as excited today as I was our first day out.
We left Dawson City without a full tank of gas, and why would we do that, well gas was $6.03 a gallon and if you know Mike he thinks he can run on fumes. He did fill a 5 gallon gas can just in case. Yes we ran out of gas and had to put that 5 gallons in the MH and it did get us to Chicken AK.
What a trip the Top Of The World Highway is, most of it unpaved narrow windy with the usual washboard ruts, and no shoulders and pretty much one lane.
The road started out pretty good and we thought, oh this isn’t as bad as everyone says, oh yes it is and worse, but it was fun. This little fellow was hitchhiking his way to Alaska. I wanted to stop and give him a ride, you all know what Mike said…….
The center picture shows the dust from a vehicle in front of us. The MH had more dirt in it then it gets in the desert.
We crossed the border with no problems and no snakes. Going thru the gates to Alaska, as you can see the gravel turned more yellow in the US.
It was certainly beautiful here at the top.
It was 108 miles from Dawson City to Chicken Alaska and no problems with either Mh. I would say it was a good time had by all.
Road construction even on gravel roads.
Monday June 25th and Tuesday June 26, 2012
Dawson City is our favorite town so far. So much history with the gold rush and the people that came here to tame the wild Yukon and the Klondike. What people they must have been to go thru the hardships of the times.
During the 1898 Klondike Gold Rush, people arrived from all over the world, to make boom-town Dawson the largest Canadian city west of Winnipeg. In 1899, the community was a thriving town with telegraph,, electricity and telephone service. Dawson City was the territorial capitol from 1898 to 1952 when the administration moved to Whitehorse.
The population during the gold rush in 1898 was between 30,000 and 40,000, depending and your source, today the population is about 1350. Gold is still mined in and around Dawson City, mostly by large corporations.
A few facts on Dawson. 20.9 hours of daylight on June 21st and 3.8 hours of daylight on Dec 21st. They have 33 frost free days a year. Annual snowfall 58.9 inches. Average high temp is 72 and low is –30. The few days we spent in Dawson we had a high of 84 and sunny, we were lucky. Dawson is located only 333 miles from the Artic Circle.
Dawson City was declared a national historic site in the early 1960s. Parks Canada is currently involved with 35 properties in the city. Many buildings have been restored, some reconstructed and other stabilized.
We took a few guided tours, “Strange Things Done In The Midnight Sun”, Palace Grand Theatre, S.S. Keno and Dredge #4, plus all the touring we did on our own.
Main street now and as it was during the gold rush. The only street that is paved is the main one thru town, the rest are dirt. The town has boardwalks in front of all the main buildings.
At one time the main form of transportation was the steam wheeler, they still run on the Yukon, but only for tourist rides.
The old post office built in 1900 has been restored to it’s original self.
There are 3 buildings that have not been restored and you can see what the permafrost and freezing and thawing did to them..
The Red Feather Saloon after restoration and picture of it in the early days. Mike really wants to grow up to be a bartender.
Dawson City has many cemeteries I took pictures of the Catholic and police cemetery. Research was done and most of the markers replace with the name of the deceased.
The wild roses were going everywhere.
The Yukon River and Dawson City.
Pictures taken from the top of the Dome, which is just a flat spot on top of the mountain overlooking the town. They call it the midnight dome you can watch the sunset and sunrise on June 21st, they supposedly happen only an hour apart. We didn't check it out, although Sandy and Steve did. You will have to read their blog to see what happened. (oops she is behind and that one is not written yet.)
We saw much more when we were here, but it’s getting close to happy hour and I promised I would not let the blog interfere with that time of day.
Mike is going to write a blog about Dredge No. 4 and the S.S. Keno, other places we visited in Dawson City. SOON he says.
Sunday June 24th thru Tuesday June 26th 2012
It was 209 miles from the Creek to Dawson City, we stopped at one of the best known roadhouses in the north, Moose Creek Lodge for a little lunch. This is one of the few times we have eaten out, eating out is very expensive in this part of the country.
I said in my last post the mosquitos have not been bad, I now will say they are really bad here. The third pic is a giant mosquito.
Somebody here is very talented wood carver, there are many carvings on the property.
I think I found my man, he has a tub, a washing machine and a cabin, what more could a women ask for. I have none of the above.
The highways have not been real bad, not good, but not terrible.
The frost heaves are usually marked with an orange flag. If not you can tell by the tire marks on the highway.
We had lots of wildflowers growing along the highway. How would like to ride your bike in this country? Not for me, give me the comfort of my MH.
I think we pulled into Dawson City about 3 PM. The first thing we do in every town is stop at the visitor center and get information on what's to see. Everyone of the visitor centers has been so helpful in helping us plan our stays in their city.
The first thing we did was find a place to stay, it happens to be on the other side of the Yukon River, no bridge, put the MH of a ferry a very small ferry.
Lucy was not very impressed with things so far. She evidently has not seen the ferry yet.
I was just a little worried when I saw the size of the ferry, are we going to fit on that. Well we did, and Steve took the pictures for us. Only one large MH at a time. They did squeeze a few cars on with us. When Steve and Sandy came over they had a little mishap the people that direct you on and off the ferry did not do a very good job, a small pickup with a camper got one of Steve’s big mirrors and gave it good whack a some pretty deep gouges.
We stayed in West Dawson at another government campground.