Tuesday, June 21, 2016

2016 Epic Road Trip - Day 36

June 18, 2016

Day 36 - Whitehorse, YT to Dawson City, YT - ___ Miles

A wonderful day of breathtaking beauty heading predominately north to Dawson City, YT.  The difference between the two towns is like night and day.  Dawson City came about as a gold rush town  around 1896-1898.  Wooden boardwalk sidewalks were built, wooden storefronts, saloons, hotels, etc. and it has essentially remained the same since then.

I took in a cabaret-style show at Diamond Tooth Gertie's Gambling Hall. Lots of fun, even though it was only 30 minutes long and the dancers only had a couple moves. But it was all good. Had a nice dinner of Rib Eye Steak and potatoes and even won $400 on the slots!

While at the show, I heard that the highway I took the other day from Dawson Creek, YT has been closed due to extreme flooding. It was described as “the kind of floods they show on the news in Texas”.  Even more damaging, the whole highway (Hwy 87) collapsed in Carmacks, YT; like a huge sinkhole engulphing both sides of the road.  It will be months until it is reconstructed.   Had I waited one more day,  I would have been really messed up with at least a thousand mile detour to get back on schedule!  I haven’t had internet since then, so I haven’t been able to read about it yet.

My travels today took me through incredible mountains and glacial lakes. The berms of the road were lined with purple fireweed.  I don’t know if it was planted or just grew wild, but it was everywhere. I came upon Braeburn Lodge, known for its cinnamon buns, so I tried another.  It filled the dinner plate.  Another roadside stop was the old Montague roadhouse, a place for dinner and lodging for prospecters heading to the gold.

As I approached Dawson City, I could see hundreds of acres of tailings and tailing ponds.  They’ve been declared an historic site so, although people can flatten them out and build on them, they can never been mined again.  It has been estimated that only about 20% of the gold had been extracted from these tailings, since their methods 120 years ago were more primitive than methods in use today. Bummer....

No, I did not participate...no Sour Toe Cocktail for me!

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