After 262 days and 8,695 miles in the RV, we finally began our trip to Alaska. No surprise, the scenery has been spectacular in Canada. The roads have been great for the most part, mostly single lane but we're traveling at about 50 mph when we're not going through the towns or mountain passes. One big surprise is finding that we’re practically the only ones on the road which allows us to comfortably drive at our own pace. Claudia and I spent our first night in Canada by visiting the campground bbq pit. When it came time to order, the head honcho came over to tell us that he had a fresh lake trout available to grill that a friend of his caught earlier in the day and suggested we try that. Neither one of us was sure we liked it but as Claudia said, “When in Rome” so we gave it a try. It turned out to be delicious and that one trout was more than enough for the two of us. This turned out to be a good call and a great way to start our travels through unfamiliar territory. We took a walking tour of Clinton including a visit to the local museum. Clinton was a stopping point for many of the gold seekers as they headed north to the Cariboo gold fields and had a lot of great history. Our next stop was in Fraser-Fort George. Along the way we did spot our first wildlife as a deer ran on the side of the road and a bald eagle flew in front of us. I'll never get sick of seeing bald eagles. They're just so beautiful. When we arrived in Fraser-Fort George and as we drove down the gravel road to what appeared to be the middle of the wilderness, a nice little man came running out to greet us and welcome us to the campground. He then let us know that we were his first campers (ever), that this was his first day open and we were given his best site. If the guy hadn't been so nice we would have just kept driving but we stayed the night. Other than no Wi-Fi, lots of bugs and no other people, the place wasn't that bad if you like being alone in the wilderness. After a one night stop in Prince George, we arrived at our new campground in Smithers. The view from our campsite was breathtaking with a perfect view of the glacier on Hudson Bay Mountain right in front of us. There were mountains and wilderness all around us. After spending a day enjoying downtown Smithers, we took a short hike to view the twin waterfalls that run on either side of the glacier. We also stopped at the locally famous Wildlife Museum. It turned out to be an exhibit of the works of a local taxidermist. The museum was actually closed but the owner let us in as he was taking pictures of all his animals because he was planning to sell them to Cabalas, who were planning to open a new store in the area. You'll have to see the pictures to believe what we saw. Our next stop was in Iskut at an absolutely beautiful campground surrounded but mountains and very close to a wilderness lake. Our morning started off with a young moose just walking past our camper. It turned out to be a good sign because during the day we saw several more moose, including a baby. We also saw a fox, a coyote and several bear, both black and brown. Our best look at a bear came as a large brown bear; still wearing his winter coat was slowly walking along the shoulder of the highway until he finally got spooked and ran into the woods. On our way to our next stop in Watson Lake, our first Yukon Territory stop, we travelled the Stewart-Cassiar Highway that was the most beautiful drive we’ve taken so far. We saw mile after mile of majestic mountains and pristine lakes. Unfortunately, the state of the road itself wasn't as good as previous highways but we took it slow. While we were in Watson Lake, we stopped by the world famous Sign Post Forest to see the tens of thousands of license plates and signs that people from around the globe have left there. Claudia and I plan to be prepared to leave her old Rav4 license plate there on our return trip. We took off early the next morning in the pouring rain and eventually made it to Whitehorse. Along the way the rain had let up after a couple of hours but we hit some of the worst roads yet. At one point we were driving along an unpaved gravel road for about 10 miles and with the rain still coming down it covered both the RV and car in mud. Once we settled in at our campground, we took a stroll around town before heading over to the S.S. Klondike. The S.S. Klondike was the largest sternwheeler to run along the upper Yukon River and has been restored to her original condition. We had a fun time exploring her and learning a lot about the history of the Whitehorse and Yukon area in the early 1900's. Later, we headed back into town and had a nice dinner out at the Klondike Rib & Salmon BBQ. It’s a famous joint here in Whitehorse. From there we headed across the street to see the Frantic Follies Show. This is another well-known tourist stop in Whitehorse and was quite entertaining. It's billed as a vaudeville act and demonstrates the type of entertainment that was around during the gold rush days. When the show ended at about 10:30, we walked outside to our car and it was as bright as midafternoon. With sunset not coming until 11:30 at night, it’s really strange. The next day we took a drive over to one of the local scenic spots named Miles Canyon. Once there we were able to cross a beautiful canyon over the Yukon River on a suspension bridge and walk along some of the trails. Our next stop takes us into Alaska for the first time and we’re really looking forward to it. Ed
Ed and Claudia always dreamed of retiring and travelling the country in their motorhome. They retired in 2013 and this is the continuing story of their adventures on the road.