Thursday, June 2, 2016

Days 30 - 32, May 30 – June 1, 2016 Monday - Wednesday Teslin – Whitehorse, Yukon Territories

Robert Service
“Winding in and winding out, leaves my mind in serious doubt, as to whether the lout who built this route, was going to hell or coming out.” SGT Troy Hise, military construction, Alaska Highway

The Route
Traveling from Teslin to Whitehorse on Hwy 1 brought to mind how an ice cube might feel as it traverses its way to becoming a daiquiri.  Freezing rain, hail, road construction, and washboards were our dear friends on this stretch of the road.  Beautiful as it was, the washboards were bone jarring.  About 10 miles out of Whitehorse, the road became smooth and magnificent and we rolled into town in style…perhaps with the remaining undercarriage nuts and bolts hanging on for dear life.

Whitehorse!!!  Just the name conjures up visions of those hordes of miners stampeding their way “North” with hopes of easy fortunes.  It was anything but easy with more than half overwhelmed by the rigors of the trail and of those who stayed, only a handful struck it rich.  A handful…that was all it took for those tough enough to stake a claim, melt the permafrost as they burrowed deep into the ground to find those ounces of treasure that might change their lives.  The real winners were the merchants, freighters, barkeeps, and “Goodtime Girls.”  “Guys, if you’re not ready, don’t stand in line!” (Good Time Girls of the Alaska-Yukon Gold Rush).  History abounds, and there is ample opportunity to immerse into Whitehorse’s colorful past by visiting its great museums and exhibits.  We visited the MacBride Museum, the Yukon Beringia Interpretive Center, Sam McGee’s original cabin, and learned a bit more about the authors Jack London and Robert Service’s stay in Whitehorse…” There are strange things done in the midnight sun by men who moil for gold; the artic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold…”
Sam McGee's Cabin

Whitehorse, capital of the Yukon Territories, has a rich and colorful history.  Sporting just over 27,000 residents, it is the largest city in the Yukon.  After weeks of traveling through the remoteness of the north, arriving in Whitehorse left us wide-eyed and hungry for the comforts that it offered.  Feasting on fine cuisine, shopping in fully stocked grocery stores, and visiting great museums was a real treat that enticed us to stay for several days. It was here that several of the local residents that we met strongly suggested that we “DO NOT BYPASS DAWSON!”  Due to bad roads, this side trip entails more than 100 miles of backtracking.  Even so, armed with a new Yukon 6-day fishing license, it is off we go to see what there is to see in Dawson City.
Focus is on the Land Bridge, how and why man and animals crossed over to N. America

Beringia Display - Giant Beaver once roamed N. America

Beringia Display - As did the Woolly Mammoth

1 comment:

  1. Sorry not to comment much, but I'm still watching,enjoying your commentary and scenery.
    Let us know how that fishing license is working for you. I've heard that ANYONE can catch all the fish they need in that country. Tom Weigand