Saturday, July 03, 2010

Road Trip 2010: Day 24 Skagway to Whitehorse

Friday July 2: Day 24 Skagway to Whitehorse, YT

We retraced our steps back up the Klondike Highway as far as Carcross this morning. Then it was new territory north on the Klondike and then on the Alaskan Highway until we reached Whitehorse.

Sun dancing on the waters of Tutshi Lake

Back in the Yukon. This sign is much nicer than the one I posted earlier.

Since Terry and I had already stopped at the Carcross Desert and at Caribou Crossings, we passed those attractions by. We did, however stop at Carcross itself to take advantage of the restrooms, top off the coffee mug and pick up a few items for gifts at the oldest operating store in the Yukon: Watson’s General Store.

Oldest operating store in the Yukon.

Like many of the early narrow guage engines, this one at Carcross was made in Patterson, NJ.

We were into our campground in Whitehorse much too early but we had told our leader (who was, himself, still setting up when we arrived) that we wanted to go into town to get the oil changed on the Tundra and so were going to hustle on up. Unfortunately, nearly everyone else hustled up without stopping at the attractions at Carcross either.

Terry and I did, in fact, take the Tundra into town and get it serviced at a place called Envirolube. The price was steep, but they could do it as we waited. We also stopped at Staples to pick up a second external hard drive so I could back-up the photographs and remove the older ones from the computer’s over-worked hard drive.

Then we went to visit the Yukon Transportation Museum and an interpretive center dedicated to the ancient land of Berengia.

Out front of the Transportation Museum is the World’s Largest Wind Vane: a DC-3 mounted on a single pylon so that it turns to face into the wind. Inside, exhibits dealt with everything from dog sleds, carriages and buckboards, narrow gauge railroads, foot paths, sno-cats, and military trucks to airplanes and, although heavily biased to the 20th century, proved to be very interesting.

Transportation Museum

World's Largest Weather Vane

Berengia was the land exposed between Alaska and Asia during the last ice age and that land in the north that was not covered by ice. Fossils, bones and artifacts from that time (12 to 20 thousand years ago) are constantly being found on the banks of rivers and lakes as well in placer mining sites throughout the Yukon.

Lots of creatures took advantage of the expoased grasslands to travel from Asia to North America.
Wooly Mammoth

Giant Bison

And, of course, man.

After dinner, we all boarded a charter bus for a ride into Whitehorse to attend the show Frantic Follies, an 1890s vaudevillian revue of song, dance, comedy and more as it would have been presented to an audience of miners fresh from the creeks and with mighty heavy pokes. Needless to say we had a great time. But, that will have to be a separate post.

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