Saturday, August 29, 2015

Dawson Creek_Last Stop of our Alaska Adventure

Here it is Friday evening, Aug 28th. We arrived in Dawson Creek on Wed. after a very long and audacious road trip. From where you asked yourself? Why from Fort St. John, 35 miles west of Dawson Creek. This is where we spent 2 days relaxing in the sun soaking up the rays and spending quiet time together.

We arrived and had DaGirls setup and relaxing.
Della was in her position with Tilly guarding her and her pillow.
Even Susan got into the act of relaxing. Especially with Tilly on guard.
We relaxed in the Peace Island Campground, Taylor, BC. Electric only but large sites and most of them are pull thrus. So, we sat back, relaxed, drove around and visited the local sites. This was our chance to just sit back after 2 long days of driving the Alaska Highway, some of it still under construction.

Prior to our leaving Taylor, we noticed the highway leading out was under construction going up the steep hill. We escaped the worst, by leaving early in the morning before the real road traffic got started.
Once up the hill we settled down into driving the last 30 miles. We discussed at which point to switch drivers, but I lost and drove the entire 30 miles into town.
We arrived early, around 8 am. Located Tubby's RV & Car Wash and while I settled into cleaning DaGirls Rv, Susan went in search of a campground, propane and check out the town.

It has been way to long in giving DaGirls a really good bath, but with most of the worst road construction behind us, we felt she needed a good one.
Every time we landed at a park that had water or high pressure hose we would at least wash the radiator and CAC. We knew if we kept this up, we would never experience any heating issues in the coming year. So, my recommendation, at least wash your cooling system if nothing else.
We landed at the Mile “0” campground next to Pioneer Park, a small museum with buildings showing the history of the settlers of days gone by.
Once settled in, the next item on my agenda was finish up cleaning DaGirls Rv. Tires, wheels, windows and just plain wiping her down and getting all the crap off. I then started on the large storage compartment. I can’t imagine how dirty it could have gotten, if I had not taken Dean’s advise and sealed every corner and seam inside the compartments. I still had dust and dirt, but not as bad as it COULD have been.

It seems like it took all day, but really we were done in a couple of hours. DaGirls look pretty good after all those miles she has put on.
Now about those miles, just how many miles did DaGirls Rv put on.
The first column “AlaskaAdv” is the total of our entry into Canada,Alaska. Travels and our final Canada travels with our arrival in Dawson Creek. The rows are Miles, Cost of Fuel, Average fuel cost per gallon and miles per gallon. 
AlaskaAdv             USA     Canada     Alaska   Canada
5191                        2337    1997       1899       1295
$2,619.15              $949     $1,020    $926      $672
$3.70                    $2.97     $4.05       $3.42     $3.64
7.34                          7.46      7.74          7.16         7.14

Our venture into Canada started on June 9th, arrived in Alaska on July 2nd and our re-entry into Canada on Aug 23rd.

So, what have we done while in DC. Saw the town, visited stores including a very good meat market. Saw the special sites and enjoyed everything.
Aug 27_Dawson Creek Arrival_5
Susan spotted a Moose that needed to be set free
Aug 27_Dawson Creek Arrival_7
I worked hard on setting him free
Aug 27_Dawson Creek Arrival_9
We spotted the Mile “0” post
Aug 27_Dawson Creek Arrival_1
Then we found the real mile “0”
Aug 27_Dawson Creek Arrival_2
Aug 27_Dawson Creek Arrival_21
But in the end we found the real starting point or at least the one that is close to the real starting point.

By the way, there is a really good meat market in town, which you should stop in and enjoy the products:

If you are into steaks, the kind from dead cows, this is the place,  sliced the way you want it. 

One last stop before we leave the area. During construction of the Alaska Highway, many of the bridges were built from wood. There is 1 remaining bridge left called the Kistkatinaw Bridge, long and curved:

It took nearly as long to build this one bridge as it took to build the entire Alaska Highway.  At one point when almost completed the Spring waters and a log jam took out the bridge and it had to be rebuilt.

ok, as Susan would say SeeYa

From DaGirls and us

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Aug 25th_On the Road to the Good Old USA

Ok, DaGirls Rv left Watson Lake on Monday morning around 7:30.
Our plan was to drive until around Muncho Lake then scout for a place for the night. Little did we realize what we were in stored for. Maybe this should have been a warning:
Aug 24_On the Road Home_0077
We hadn’t realized that Muncho Lake was in the middle of the construction zone. But it’s an adventure and we are always up to it. Along the way, we stop, we reflect, enjoy each other, discuss our values and love life.
Aug 24_On the Road Home_0075
Our first photo op, leaving the Yukon Territory and really entering British Columbia, although we would go in and out about 6 times, before really staying in BC.
Aug 24_On the Road Home_0078
As we headed south our day started out with some fog and cloudy skies: Aug 24_On the Road Home_0080
Our first chance for wildlife is when we capture this photo:
Aug 24_On the Road Home_0076We laugh, as every time we saw a sign, do we see animals – no. But this time we were in for the surprise of our life in Canada. As we were driving look what we spotted:
Aug_24_Wood Bison_8
Aug_24_Wood Bison_10
Aug_24_Stone Sheep16_
Aug_24_Stone Sheep17_
One, just one of the biggest surprises was this lovely one on the side of the road – white Butt
Our biggest excitement was a Moose:
Along the way we planned on stopping in at the Laird Hot Springs for a lovely dip.   Sorry no photos of us, but we did manage to take a few of the springs:
Aug_24_Laird Hot Spr_1
Aug_24_Laird Hot Spr_2
Aug_24_Laird Hot Spr_3
If you’re wondering if did I place a rock at the top. I’ll never tell.
Aug_24_Laird Hot Spr_4
 Aug 24_On the Road Home_0123

As you can tell we made many stops along our drive, that along with construction made for a longer drive. But since Susan and I share driving, we arrived at a spot suitable for dry camping. I believe the way to share an adventure is a willingness to not be in a rush to get to that point/place. Stop every so often and enjoy the sights. Seek out and make a point in stopping and enjoying each other’s company.

Traveling the Highways and Byways with Della and Tilly. And of course Hopper has to come along.

Aug 24 AlCan Hwy Wood Bison

Friday, August 21, 2015

Aug 21–Our time in Haines

Ok, we arrived in Haines with our reservation in hand to take the Ferry on Monday (Aug 24), to take us to Skagway. We had chosen this method instead of driving back out the way we had come in.

But wait, what was that we just heard? The ferry is out of service? Yep, our ferry for Monday,was now going to be Tuesday, so that meant staying 5 days instead of the 4. Hey we can do it we aren’t in any hurry are we?

Well we talked it over, weighed  the cost of the ferry ($247) Vs driving ($250) up, around and down to Skagway and decided to skip Skagway. So, what are we doing in Haines? Visiting the local museums, the Eagle Foundation Center, checking out Dalton City, where the movie White Fang was filmed, and of course on the prowl for wildlife.

Our first 2 days was filled with seeing a Grizzle bear and 2 cubs which we spotted near the mouth of the Lutak Inlet to Chilkoot Lake. Seems there are about 4 to 7 pairs of cows and cubs in the area that make the area home this time of year. Reason is there is a Weir (counting system) Salmon bridge across the inlet. This allows the game and fish to count the salmon heading upstream.

Well it also allows the bear to sit in the water and just have easy pickens for snacks. Of course it is even easier for the cubs.

Another place of interest is the Eagle Foundation Center. I have not really found its real purpose, except for educational on raptors. It does care for wounded and injured birds and releases those that can be. We enjoyed our time there learning more about the life of our national symbol.

So sit back and enjoy the photos we have taken in and around Haines. Oh by the way, if you are wondering what goes on in and around Haines ? Not much, the only industry is the 1 cruise ship that arrives on Wednesday, some fishing and the 3 small museums. So if you’re thinking nice place to move to, well unless you are well off or have a really good business plan – don’t, as the cost of living is higher and the jobs are little. The views are nice, people friendly but that is about all.  A good place for some down time to rejuvenate.

Upon our arrival and driving around we spotted this cow and her 2 cubs.
The longer we waited the more she and the cubs kept moving
No bears were harmed in the making/taking - a little wet but not harmed.

As Susan would say "SeeYa"

From DaGirls Della and Tilly

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Aug 18 On the Road to Haines Alaska

Ok, we left Tok right after getting our oil changed. Cost $165, not bad considering where we were. But it was easy letting the Tesoro do then me. I show we have burned over 825 gallons of diesel, which puts DaGirls Rv close to the 1000 gallons of fuel burned. Sorry, no photo ops of the area, as we have been here before.

Susan took the wheel first thing in the morning with the drive to Port Alcan (US-Canada Border).

Aug 18_Tok to Haines_0003
We did not realize that there is a no-mans land between the 2 border crossing. So, once you cross you drive about 20 – 30 KM between stations. Once thru, we made good time until we hit the construction ZONE, outside of Beaver Creek. This zone must be over 20 miles long, if not then 30. The most part not bad, but you have to maintain between 20 and 45 miles/hour if you don’t want to raddle everything. Dusty,,,, WOW, what dust and my dash cam card was full and I did not realize it, otherwise you would see dust storms arising. It is hard to decide which to drive thru, wet or dry.
We stopped at a small place in Destruction Bay for the night 15amps $12 CA. So not bad.Della and I awoke for a couple of shots:
Aug 18_Destruction Bay Dog and Man
Della and her Human
Aug 18_Destruction Bay Sun Rising 1
Sun rise in the distance
Aug 18_Destruction Bay Sun Rising 2

Aug 18_Destruction Bay Sun Rising 3
We headed out around 8:30 am with Susan at the wheel again, but this time the wind was blowing. She drove until we landed in Haines Junction, CA. for refueling and a short stop. But once on the road we headed down to Haines AK. The road is super nice and you could go at least 60 mph if the frigen wind wasn’t blowing so hard, we would have made excellent time, so we limped along about 45 to 55.
I did manage to take a few shots along the way:
Aug 18_Tok to Haines_A
Aug 18_Tok to Haines_b
Aug 18_Tok to Haines_C
We arrived around 11:30 ish and got set up.
Aug 18_Tok to Haines_DaGirls
Many of you know I have been searching for Diamond Willow, which finding Willow is easy, but Diamond is – well lets just say no luck, YET. But look what I did find:
Burl Wood Popular
This is Burl wood but it is on Popular, normally you see it on Spruce.

Aug 18_Dezadeash Lake CG

Aug 18_DaGirsl Rv Dezadeash Lake

Aug 18_DaGirsl Rv Dezadeash Lake Site 1

Aug 18_DaGirsl Rv Dezadeash Lake Site 2