Monday, June 29, 2015

On the Road from Watson Lake to Whitehorse Yukon Jun 28

We have had a fun time in the village of Watson Lake, seeing Wayne, Kathy and Tungor. They were very surprised when they arrived and Kathy saw this guy, taking photos of them as they disconnected the tow car. Next thing, she realizes who's taking the photos and runs over to give me a BIG hug, which almost bowled me over.

We spent time catching up and meeting their traveling companions, of the S.M.A.R.T. Caravan group. It is fun to watch the caravans arrive and get setup for the night. We also get a chance to catch up on the road conditions heading toward Whitehorse and Dawson City. The word is SLOW, due to frost heaves and the road which is under repair.

This past Thursday (June 25th), we did a road trip up the Campbell Hwy. We spied  a few good shots but the best one was of the moose and her calf crossing the Hwy. Something you have to be faster than animal.

We did spied a nice cabin in the woods, ready for restoration:

Well, Sunday morning arrived like usual, BRIGHT, as sunlight last about 18 to 20 hours now. You know me and sun, once it comes in, I'm up. Well Susan has been working on making black out curtains along with a skylight curtain. So I have been able to sleep till 6 ish. Not bad, but we have been staying up longer also. What a drag.

Anyway, before we got out of the campground, Wayne pop out to say goodbye. It was great seeing them again, so off we went, north to Whitehorse Yukon, we only needed to travel about 300 miles. Our goal, the Wal-Mart in Whitehorse and stay for either 1 or 2 night.

Since we had heard that the Yukon was teaming with wildlife,  our expectations were high is seeing bears, moose, caribou and many more. I mean the Milepost book said so right:

Sometimes the camera is not as fast as DaGirls Rv. We have seen some but not as much as we were lead to believe. But really, you are driving on the highway, would you want to stand next to a highway?

Susan, was behind the wheel as we took off for the first leg of the road trip with me in the co-pilot seat. Well, where else did you expect me to sit?. And look who had to drive across the first bridge:

As we headed out we kept reading the MilePost book to find hidden gems along the way. Our first goal? Teslin, YT, where we learned was a culture centre on the First Nation Tribe Teslin Tlingit.

Along the way we were reading  about the Continental Divide in THE BOOK, the Milepost made it sound like there was a rest stop/pull off RIGHT AT the divide. Well it's not, you know the Continental Divide separates the two ranges, and is at the highest point (1116 Km). Well, here is the highest point, sorry for the out of focus. And the information in the BOOK is OUT of DATE, everything is closed.

However along the way, we pulled into a rest stop overlooking Swan Lake along the Alcan (Alaska-Canada) Highway (Hwy). This stop is located on the south bound side at 1152 Km and called the Swan Lake rest area, we notice a small group of people looking out into the lake. Little did we realize at the time, they were looking at a small heard of Moose in the lake getting breakfast.

If this teaches you anything, is to stop and smell the roses:

DaGirls resting

Now, one other item, as we were leaving, I happened to look to the left and even closer were 2 more moose in the water. If only I had just stopped, set the flashers and gone to the side of the road, what a shot that would have made. I have got to just stop and get out.

Back on the road our goal, Teslin, Yukon, a First Nation Village, is about 163 miles northwest of Watson lake, our goal was the culture centre on the First Nation Tribe Teslin Tlingit, pronounced Klink-It.

Our grand entrance into Teslin:

 DaGirls together enjoying the view

We stopped in and had a very enjoyable time at the culture centre. In fact it was so much fun and educational that we sent an Email to Tip Evans the manager:

Recently my wife and I chanced to stop ​in at your culture centre just outside Teslin. What a wonderful experience. Our first meeting was with your staff member at the counter. As we were talking and asking questions, she was polite and very informative about the culture and history of the Tlingit people.  We were amazed at the history of the Tlingit. However, as we were getting ready to tour the centre, she suggested that we visit and listen to Margaret, an instructor on the  art of tanning of moose.

Margaret Douville is a wonderful representative of your Nation and culture.  She recounted an amazing story of how at the age of 13 her grandmother informed her she was to learn the ancient art of moose hide tanning. Also, how her grandfather suggested she may as well just do it, because what grandmother says, grandchildren shall do. 

As we sat there mesmerized, she weaved her story, embarking into this art, passed down from the old to the young. She continued, by telling us how she is teaching this art to the younger generation of Tlingit. She showed us the tools handed down from her ancestors, telling us about the marks that were made on the staffs representing each hide tanned by that tool. 

As we were talking, she recounted to us about her first hide.  How at the age of 13 it took her about 16 days to complete it and that when she stretched it, it looked much like  a fish net due to the many holes in it.  She shared that a young man who then made fun of that hide, just 4 years ago asked her to make a pair of moccasins for him and finally apologized for the actions of his youth.  

We truly experienced the culture of the Tlingit thru Margaret's stories of her life and the many crafts she is skilled in.  She shared information on the art work that she has on display in the centre. 

We wish we could have spent the day, watching and learning more about your culture.  We also want to thank you for the bannock and coffee, both were a welcome treat.

The Tlingit will be hosting a celebration in July and everyone is invited.

We arrived into Whitehorse around 4-ish and parked alongside a grass area in the parking lot of Wal-Mart, our overnight stop.

We arrived just in time for the SS Klondike to be closed,

but we headed out anyway to take a look. What did we find or should I say, what did we hear when we arrived? A bag-pipe and drum group practicing.

I managed to get about a 3 minute video of the group playing. It's something about the sound that just gets to me.

Bag Pipes in the Park Video 

Of course we couldn't pass by this opportunity shot:

As Susan Says SeeYa

Safe Travels and Journeys 

Della                     &                      Tilly

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Cassiar Highway 37

Our journey started on June 18th, on the Yellowhead Hwy 16, at the Junction, where Hwy 16 meets with Hwy 37. The name for this is the Yellowhead Hwy Junction and continues to the junction of Cassiar Hwy 37 & Alaska Hwy 1. The name for that one is the Alaska Hwy Junction. From junction to junction covers 450 miles or 724 Km long.

Once on the road and heading west on the Yellowhead Hwy, we were very lucky, as we spotted a bear crossing the road. Darn it, no cameras were near or ready for picture taking. The bear was not ready either.  But we had spotted signs of life on the Hwy.

We refueled at the Yellowhead junction with diesel, and then headed north to Steward, BC. Our total for the day was 203 miles. As we were getting closer to Steward, we stopped for a breathtaking view. The Bear Glacier as it is called and on the south side of the Hwy.

As we pulled into Steward, we headed to check out the visitor's center and the 2 local campgrounds. Darn it  the visitor center closes at 4pm, but between the municipal and Bear River CG we choose Bear River. Only because of the larger lot size.

Once settled in, we headed out to seek adventure, even crossing into the USA, Hyder, AK. Funny, there are no border agents crossing in USA, only coming back into Canada. I mean where else are you going to go, it's not as if there are many roads in and out of Hyder.

But once in the USA we headed up the road to seek out wildlife. Once at the national forest catwalk, we scouted but alas, no wildlife was to be seen. After walking around, we slowly made our way back to town and what did we spot crossing the road? Why, doesn't that look like a small black bear cub? Yes it does. Eureka  we had spotted another black bear.

As we continue to seek out wildlife we spotted this one just outside the town of Hyder.


But wait, is this another bear in the Woods?

Happily, we headed back to Steward, but only to stop in at the Glacier Inn. Elijah had recommended that we should stop in to get Hyderized, whatever that was. Well we found out it was drinking 150 proof ever-clear without throwing it back out. Thanks Elijah, but both Susan & I will pass on that adventure. But we did have a glass of wine and an Alaska Beer along with a bowl of soup.

Once done, it was time to return to DaGirls Rv and check on the gang and see what was happening. We did manage to get out and head up to Salmon Glacier for photo ops and continue our search for wildlife.

This is where we came across a man who calls himself the Bear Man. He has been coming here for over 20 years and lives in a tent for the summer. His specialty is what else, Bears. 

If you end up at the Salmon Glacier Summit, stop and talk to him. He makes his living off of selling DVD's, photos and other items.

If you do go to Steward, stop and check out the museum. Spend the 45 minutes watching a video on Steward and the surrounding area. You will be amazed at the history in that small town. While we were there, they were having a garage sale along with lunch - chili and a bun complete with homemade desserts - yum.

Another side trip was going around town and checking out all the old buildings. Most of them on the historical society list in BC.  Too many to post all the photos here, but Beth, we found you and David a new place to restore;

Beth, David check it out, and it is for sale and all it needs is a little TLC.

On the 21st, we headed out to continue our journey on the Cassiar Hwy, today's stop was going to be Dease Lake, BC, where we refueled and grabbed a small bite of lunch. While we were enjoying ourselves, we decided to go the extra 93 miles to Boya Lake Provincial Campground. Originally we had planned on only going 240 miles,, but something was telling us to continue on. So onward we drove, in all today's journey was a little over 333 miles.

Funny, as we were traveling, we spied an Rv that we saw in Smithers, BC. It was Jim, Barb & Sundown, from where of all places? Prescott, AZ. They too had decided to make the Alaska journey.

As we traveled northward, we ended the last few miles in a rain shower. Once we pulled into the campground, we knew we had found our spot, we were home.

We ended up staying at Boya Lake for 2 additional nights, sitting back, relaxing and enjoying our new Yukon Legend Propane Camp Fire. Again many thanks to Irene for locating this in Alberta CA. 
Della's Seal of Approval

We awoke knowing that we had to leave Boya Lake. Our time spent here was blissful. Hiking, walking around and meeting other Alaska bound Rv'ers. So today, June 24th, is our travel day, and where was DaGirls Rv heading today? To Watson Lake, Yukon, located just east of the Alaska Hwy Junction on the Alaska Hwy. Our distance today was 70 miles from Boya Lake CG. Wow what a very long drive. So here we sit for a few days, waiting to surprise Wayne and Kathy when they arrive on the 27th.

So there you have it, DaGirls journey on the Cassiar Hwy, Hwy 37 as it is numbered. DaGirls Rv first really excursion into British Columbia. I hope you enjoyed this little update on DaGirls Blog, check back later when you have time.
 Leaving Beautiful British Columbia
And Entering
The Yukon Territory
So, Bye from Susan & Dale Traveling the Highways and Byways in DaGirls Rv.

Boya Lake & the Surrounding Area

As Susan Says SeeYa

Safe Travels and Journeys 

Della                     &                      Tilly

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Lost ? DaGirls are Lost?

Well, we really are not lost, just misplaced, so to say. 
We arrived in Watson Lake today June 24th, and with limited WiFi and access time both of us are trying to catch up with emails and news.

The best I can do is add some great photos:

Photo 1

Photo 2 

Photo 3

Photo 4

As Susan Says SeeYa

Safe Travels and Journeys 

Della                     &                      Tilly

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

June 17 Traveling Day

June 17th traveling day, where you ask? To Smithers, BC along the Trans-Canada Highway commonly referred to as the Yellowhead Hwy. Today's' weather is mainly cloudy with a slight chance of showers along our route.
We have said our goodbyes to White Swan Park, as we have written, great place to boon dock, hike and just check out the area. Susan witness wildlife today as she was walking Tilly this morning. What she first thought was a dog, turned out to be a coyote with breakfast in its mouth (duck). Definitely a good start to a travel day.

As we got on the road and headed west, we had only gone about 15 miles when  spotted something black crossing the highway. No time for a camera shot, even as Susan slowed down. What we saw was a black bear crossing the road. Question,  why did the black bear cross the road?  Why to get to the other side of course. Silly question. I do hope our dash cam picked it up crossing?

Our destination today is the town of Smithers. Which is 230 Km away or roughly 130 miles. Smithers is known as the "Town for All Seasons". The town offers year round recreational pursuits. With most people employed in the forestry, government, service and tourism sectors.

It is also known for the remaining Kit Houses which were built in the early 1900's.  These kit homes originate in the USA and were shipped by rail to their location. They were known for being better homes due to the wood that was used. There are only a few of these kit homes remaining.

You might ask, where is DaGirls staying the night? Good question, as we have not decided yet. There are 2 campgrounds in the area, but Susan has also located 2 overnight dry-camping spots. We'll know more when we arrive.

Ok, what' the difference between Canada and USA roads? When driving the back roads not much. Distance between towns is different, A lot more green in the area especially trees, towns are older, alcohol  prices for beer is higher, but you can still find good prices on wine in the smaller towns. Also along the Yellowhead Hwy there are lots of lakes to the north and south of the highway.

The trees are very thick along the highway, with the only breaks, being man made. In addition, we have seen about 10 signs informing travelers of Moose crossings. But the only Moose I have seen are antlers on the side of a barn and Susan has seen a graphic of a Moose on the travel trailer. But we continue to look out for them.

We landed in Smithers around 10:30 am this morning, with Susan doing ALL the driving (about 2 Hrs). We pulled off at the visitors center, chatted picked up information and walked around downtown.
Found 4 great places:
Sausage & Meat store
Bakery write behind it (Fresh bread)
Coffee shop with munchies inside
Another coffee shop with a unique building style.

We are heading out to the Twin Falls Hiking trail. About a 20 minute hike up to the falls. And then maybe another 1 hour hike to see the Glaciers on the Hudson Bay Glaciers, located about southwest of where we are.

We also checked out the local RV campgrounds:

Municipal RV campground just north, don't waste your time. $30 with W & E
Golf and RV, 1 Km east, $30 with full hook ups with reduce rate on golf. Full WiFi

Glacier RV 4 Km west, $27 back in with full hook ups. BUT not all sites have this option. Also Limited WiFi.

As Susan Says SeeYa

Safe Travels and Journeys from DaGirls 

Della                     &                      Tilly

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

June 16_Village of Fraser Lake, BC

June 16, Just where the heck is DaGirls Rv. Hum, we landed in the Village of Fraser Lake, BC. This is after leaving Lindell Beach, BC on Friday the 13th of June. We have traveled 530 miles, stayed once on the road, paid for 2 nights at the Bee Lazee RC park south of Prince George and we are currently staying at the White Swan Park, with a lake front view in the Village of Fraser Lake.
DaGirls agree within the last 2 years of traveling this would be a place we could stay for a month and be very comfortable. Even if it is dry-camping. Views of the lake, hiking in the area, laid back lifestyle. Man that's DaGirls kind of life.
DaGirls setup and relaxing
The Airport here is water
Della Seal of Approval
A little bit about the Village of Fraser Lake as reported on the Internet:
Fraser Lake is the White Swan Capital of the world.
The Village of Fraser Lake is nestled in the heart of some of British Columbia's most beautiful scenery. The area can boast of 170 lakes within a 50 mile radius and is the temporary home to over 1000 Trumpeter Swans, making it the Swan Capital of the world. It's a playground of water and natural wonderland, where you can try your luck for trout or char in the Fraser and Francois Lakes, or the Nautley or Stellako River, world-famous for its fly-fishing and spin casting. An abundance of big game, migratory birds and world class fly-fishing, spin casting and canoeing, make Fraser Lake a fabulous outdoor recreation community.
Hiking trails begin right at the Village's doorstep atop Mouse Mountain which resembles – what else – a large mouse. The extinct volcanic activity at Red Rock, Cheslatta Falls 59 km (37 miles) south and the pictographs along Fraser Lake are only a few of the area's fabulous sights.
Fraser Lake had its  humble beginnings in the early 1900's, Fraser Lake Sawmill. Endako Molybdenum Mines was at one time the second largest Molybdenum Mine in the world. Endako Mine and Fraser Lake Sawmill employs the majority of Fraser Lake residents.
Tuesday awoke to the sun peeking thru the clouds:
What more can I say about this place with a sunrise like this.
Except for Mouse Mountain, which sits within walking distance. So why is the mountain put there? Why to hike of course, least ways that is what I was told:
Of course like all trails the information is good and a little upside down:
But we manage to make our way to the summit and around, we even found the Village Christmas tree, which is place on the south side.
We did manage to find time for a few photo ops:
Of course the best shot did not could with a little shadow over us.
To all of our Roadrunner members and RV friends, this is just one of a lovely place to visit while in the British Columbia area. The visitors center has a dump, and along with the dump is water @$3 per 100 gals. All done by the honor system. Susan has already stated we would love to camp host here for a while, and guess what? They said ok with us.
The Park has exerciser equipment for enjoyment.
A Wharf to fish from of tie your boat, kayak or canoe.
New stage going in for entertainment.
Where you can enjoy great views of your rig all setup
Now what else has we been doing? Well how about changing the alternator on DaGirls Rv. On June 14th, when we arrived at the Bee Lazee RV, our belt was squeaking a little. Just enough to make me check it out. Nothing at all, but in the process I heard a little click when I spun the alternator. Nothing unusually, but after talking it over we decided to locate one in Prince George. GUESS WHAT Long Story short, DaGirls Rv uses a 22SI 130 amp. Alternator, the local Freightliner had a brand new 24SI 160  amp one for $209 Canadian. Wow, so I jumped on it and within an hour, including removing the pulley, had it all back together with the old one as a spare. By the way, the Freightliner shop even pulled the old pulley off for me, that is what I call service – friendly service that is. Hats off to them.
 Well, it is after 5pm and Della is looking at me, and well she is actually asleep like Susan is currently, but it is time for her dinner. And as I write this there is talk about rain tonight and winds coming up.

So it is off to the kitchen .
Weather Report

As Susan Says SeeYa

Safe Travels and Journeys from DaGirls 

Della                     &                      Tilly