Saturday, July 23, 2011

Thursday & Friday July 21 & 22 - Inuvik, NWT Canada to Whitehorse, Yukon Canada

Putting two days on this one due to the lost 3/4 of a day on the 21st with the ferry problems and today was pretty much a travel day.   With the ferry incident yesterday we pretty much fell 1/2 day behind.   We had to stop for the night halfway down the Dempster Hwy because of not having enough fuel to make it to the end on the 21st.  So here goes...............

The ride from the point where we crossed the Peel River on the ferry just after midnight was pretty much just a ride.    Due to the time of day or night as it might be we were pretty sure that we would not be seeing the Caribu herds everyone was talking about.   We stopped at the NWT/Yukon border anyway and checked out the endless fields and no sign of any life at all, including Caribu.

We saw the sun set last night at 0120am about 30 miles north of the Arctic Circle.   And while it dipped below the horizon unlike last nights treat,  it really never got dark all night.  I've got some great shots of it.     At the Arctic Circle I stopped one last time for sentimental value and took a few pictures then off for a sleep in the Jeep at Eagle Plains as everything shut down there hours ago.

Today we woke up,  filled our thirsty steeds and headed down the last 260 or so miles of the Dempster Hwy.   As usual,  I stopped for lots of photo opportunities which slowed me down but John and Tommy were taking it easy due to the roughness of the road so they didn't really catch up to me until we were 40 miles from the end.

We reached the end of the Dempster early afternoon and both filled up with gas.     John and Tommy wanted to spend another day in Dawson City and I was eager to try to salvage the schedule to get back home by Aug 1st so I hit the road for Whitehorse.    John and Tommy would be working on catching up to me along the route.

The road to Whitehorse was 300 or so miles so today was going to be a 560 mile day for me.   No time to was but as I headed down this new stretch of highway I found many new things to stop and take pictures of like the many beautiful lakes and rivers.   Close to the end of my journey tonight I passed a sign that said "Montegue Roadhouse Historic Site" and had to stop.    It was full blown 2 story log building that was in operation as a road house from 1915 to the 1950s.    It is pretty much in disrepair right now with just the shell standing but it was very cool and I am glad I took the time to check it out.    With about 45 min to go to Whitehouse I passed the huge Fox Lake and the sun was coming down so I spent nearly 1/2 hour there taking pictures of the sunset.   It was incredible.  Onward to Whitehorse where it is not just after midnight.  Campground has no WiFi so I am sitting here at Mickey D's at a picnic table.   It's actually kinda dark here tonight,  like 8pm in Phoenix this time of year.   People are still milling around town but it's getting cold so I am about done for the night and back to my warm sleeping bag at the campground.

Not sure what tomorrow will bring.    Heading to Watson Lake then south to Vancouver.    With having lost the time on the 21st,   it would be a 750 mile day to get to where the plan was for tomorrow night so I am going to have to Jeep by the seat of my pants on this one.

Badly stuck WJ at the Inuvik City Limits.....deep ruts are from a failed recovery attempt

Fort McPherson street scene
                                        Restored Cabin belonging to the Mad Trapper of Canadian Infamy
Historic Ft McPherson Cemetary
Gypsy Camps along the river
John passes the time waiting for the ferry by taking a nap,  I fed seagulls
The NWT license plates are very cool
After being closed for 15 hours the ferry re-opens shortly after midnight and we were one of the 1st groups to cross............the new mud and rock ramps were more than wet and squishy.
Finally a sunset even if it is after 1am on the 22nd
Last time across the Arctic Circle, at least for this trip
Scenes from the Dempster Hwy
 We cross the bridge to Mile 0 and the southern end of the Dempster Hwy
Here John and Tommy turn right and I turn left.    They will catch up in a few days.
The Klondike Highway sign post
Canadian Highways are the cleanest I have seen anywhere,  you just don't see litter
Beautiful Lake along the Klondike Highway
Along the Klondike Highway
Montague Roadhouse.  Operated from 1906 until the 1950s
Fox Lake Campground......government campgrounds mostly along lakes and rivers with all the comforts of home, or just about.    Located about every 50 miles along Canadian Highways
Sunset over Fox Lake
Finally at Whitehorse, the stop for the night

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