Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Days 23-24, May 23-24, 2016 Monday & Tuesday Grande Cache, AB – Kiskatinaw Prov. Campground, BC – Buckinghorse River Wayside Prov. Park, BC

Section of the Old Alaska Highway
“She turned to the sunlight…And shook her yellow head, And whispered to her neighbor:  “Winter is dead.’”  A.A. Milne

Land of the “Midnight Sun”
Our travels have taken us steadily north and the days are becoming increasingly longer.  Going to bed at 9:30 PM does not necessarily offer darkness.  Anticipating this, after living and experiencing long days in Canada, Andrea made blackout curtains that we can roll down over our windows at bedtime.  This, coupled with a darkening pad for our semi-transparent roof vent, offers us seemingly nighttime darkness.  The only problem is that, cozy as it is in our nest, getting up in the morning tends to be rather on the late side.  Soundly we sleep!
Leaving the wilds of Grande Cache, we transitioned from Hwy 40 to Hwy 97 into the flat-lands of Grande Prairie.  Oil, natural gas, and agriculture invigorates Grande Prairie’s economy and it was here that we found all the amenities of a thriving community.  After adjusting to the wilds of Canada, a modern city was quite a shock.  We did our shopping and left town post haste.  Once on the road, we continued northwest to Dawson Creek, BC and it is here that the Alaska Highway is the designated starting point…MILE ZERO at Dawson Creek. Named after George Dawson who surveyed the area in 1879, its agricultural heritage remains a part of its economy but natural gas has supplanted its footprint on the economy in a big
Kiskatinaw River Bridge was an Engineering Challenge
way.  Just to the northwest we set up camp at Kiskatinaw Provincial Campground that sits below the historic Kiskatinaw River Bridge that curves over one of the first obstacles that Army Engineers encountered when building this WWII highway.  It is here that a side loop of the “Old Alaska Highway” allows the traveler to view this historic site.  At this small, scenic campground we observed beaver playing in the river but remained vigilant as bear and moose are plentiful in the area.  This will remain a constant as we continue north.

Beaver below the Bridge
We awoke to clear skies and after a good breakfast we were on the road heading to Fort N
Kiskatinaw Bridge
elson, BC and once again enjoying the remoteness that the Great North offers.  Coursing through great forests of conifers and deciduous trees we took our time, enjoyed the wilderness, and watched for game.  Sadly, the first moose observed on this trip was one that had been hit and killed laying alongside the road.  Game is VERY THICK along Hwy 97 so caution and slower speeds were the order of the day.  At approximately 180 miles into the Alaska Highway, we stopped to spend the night at Buckinghorse River Wayside Provincial Park.  Off the road, rustic, and nestled alongside the Buckinghorse River, we had the campground to ourselves.  It is here that grayling abound but alas, while well stocked with fishing gear, fishing licenses were acutely in short supply.  DARN!!

Watch out for Wildlife!

Highway going North
Stephan!!...are you sure there are no bear here? 

1 comment:

  1. I keep wondering why Andrea is always out front on these walks......