Tagged with " Watson Lake"
May 30, 2009 -

Another Poem

I saw this poem on a poster on the wall in the ladies’ bathroom at Nugget City:

The Great Alcan Highway

Come drive the great Alcan Highway from one end to the other
Miles of splendor and adventure, become a vein of northern gold.
One time in the summer, let the Arctic sun steal your slumber.
Again in winter, challenged, by the frost and bitter cold.
What a great highway, with its very few by-ways,
Just think, you’re heading northwest to the Pole.
Don’t wait too long to drive it, prove you can survive it.
You should go now, before your dream grows too old.

Come drive the great Alcan, from one end to the other.
Give a thrill, bless your bones, far from home.
The people you meet, and the places you eat and sleep,
Make it worth all the miles, upon miles, you roam.

So come drive the great highway, give thanks for those By days,
Don’t complain, till it’s explained, how the whole thing was done.
Take the trip of your lifetime, celebrate the grand northern lifeline.
The great deed done under the spell, the midnight sun.

J. Hamilton Clarke – 1989

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Alaska, British Columbia, Canada, Travel, USA, Yukon    No Comments
May 30, 2009 -

Nugget City to Teslin

Leaving Nugget City involved my having the stuffing hugged out of me. 🙂 I pulled out sometime between noon and one.

The first part of my trek to Whitehorse is along the Alaska Highway, the last section that meanders in and out of British Columbia. I had hoped to make it to my non AH detour today, but I seriously over-estimated my energy reserves!

The problem with the drive today was the wind. It buffeted the rig from all sides, making it difficult to stay in my lane. I’d done barely 2okm and already my hands were sore from clenching the wheel!

I drove about 50 klicks and had lunch at a non-descript rest area. Next stop was 50km later at Rancheria Falls Recreation Area. There, I took an easy 2/3 of a mile hike (round trip) to see the falls:

one of the two Rancheria Falls

one of the two Rancheria Falls

Next stop was Swan Lake, British Columbia (cue the music):

Swan Lake, BC

Swan Lake, BC

At Swan Lake, I took a picture of the impressive Simpson Peak that must have served as inspiration to the ancient Egyptians!

Simpson Peak

Simpson Peak

By this point, I was done. The landscape, while stunning, is the same endless expanse of black and white spruce, poplar, and snow-capped mountains. I found my focus drifting too often. It was time to stop for the night! I decided as I approached Teslin to stop at the first place that offered an easy in and out.

entering Teslin

entering Teslin

I had hoped to start to spend less on my nights, settling for 15A, for example, but this didn’t happen for tonight. I pulled into the Yukon Motel and RV Park and found a nice campground with big pull thrus and a great view for 27$ per night for 30A, water, and internet. I decided to stay for two nights, with a stern promise to myself to never again wait until I’m completely exhausted to look for a place to stop!

Teslin Lake
Teslin Lake

Tomorrow’s agenda is to sleep in and then explore Teslin by bicycle. I might even do some laundry. 🙂

When planning this trip last year, I had hoped to stop at ‘Mukluk Annie’s’ here in Teslin, renown for serving some of the best salmon in the west, but Annie chose to retire this year. 🙁 So, I decided a few days ago to just drive through Teslin and spend a few days at a territorial park on the detour, but it would have been foolish to keep going tonight. Perhaps I was just meant to stop here.

Unfortunately, the genset is truly dead, so there is no extended boondocking in my future until I can get it fixed. 🙁 Otherwise, all systems are good and my house battery is once again charging properly when I’m driving, so I’m making progress!

As a final note, I can’t properly convey the sheer beauty of this isolated land, so I will quote a poem that has been a favourite for at least twenty years.

The Lonely Land

by: A.J.M. Smith

Cedar and jagged fir

uplift sharp barbs

against the gray

and cloud-piled sky;

and in the bay

blown spume and windrift

and thin, bitter spray

snap

at the whirling sky;

and the pine trees

lean one way.

A wild duck calls

to her mate,

and ragged

and passionate tones

stagger and fall,

and recover,

and stagger and fall,

on these stones –

are lost

in the lapping of water

on smooth, flat stones.

This is a beauty

of dissonance,

this resonance

of stony strand,

this smoky cry

curled over a black pine

like a broken

and wind-battered branch

when the wind

bends the tops of the pine

like a broken

and wind-battered branch

when the wind

bends the tops of the pines

and curdles the sky

from the north.

This is the beauty

of strength

broken by strength

and still strong

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Batteries, Boondocking/Dry camping, British Columbia, Campgrounds, Canada, Electricity, Generator, Technical, Travel, Yukon    4 Comments
May 30, 2009 -

Heading North

Well, I’m about an hour away from leaving Nugget City! I need to pack up the iMac, go dump, hookup the car, and say goodbye to everyone.

I just got back from Watson Lake. I hadn’t planned to go into town again, but I was paid by cheque so I decided that it would be wise to go deposit it, especially since I’m running low on cash. At the same time, I popped into Watson Lake foods to see what the specials are this week. That’s how I tend to shop, by stocking up on whatever’s on sale, rather than getting what I ‘want.’ There were great deals to be found, sufficiently so that I bought more than I expected, which means I’ll be in less of a hurry to get to Whitehorse. I did buy two things that were not on sale: two loaves of Demptser’s 12 grain sliced bread. This is the only sliced bread that I buy and it isn’t cheap. Whenever I can find the bread for under 4$ a loaf, I stock up. They didn’t have any at the grocery store last time, but they had two loaves today, regularly priced at… 3.99$. I was shocked; I’ve paid up to 4.99$ in BC for this bread, and that was on ‘sale’! I’m also amused that I caught Watson Lake Food’s ‘Buy 30$ worth of grocery, get a free steak knife’ promotion both times I shopped there, so I now have two nice new sharp knives; something that I actually needed. I can now retire my older, and quite dull, knives. 🙂

Whitehorse is about 500km away with the detour I’m taking. What I’m hoping to do is find a territorial park along the way where I can hunker down for a couple days and just recoup from the last two weeks. So, I will probably not be online again for several days. The adventure resumes!

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Canada, Finances, Preparations for Departure, Shopping, Travel, Yukon    No Comments