After driving up the Cassiar highway we made it to the Yukon Territory. We arrived in Whitehorse, a touristed mountain town that reminded me and Nick of Steamboat Springs, CO. We had a great meal at The Klondike Rib and Salmon BBQ and tried to imagine the harsh winters. A bumping town in the middle of nowhere, the first mail delivery didn’t come until the 1920s. We spent a day relaxing, walking the bike path along the river, and visiting the SS Klondike.
The next day Nick, Hannah, and I climbed at Golden Canyon where there was some fantastic crack climbing. We stopped at Bean North Coffee Co. to buy some locally roasted coffee and headed to Takhini Hot Springs to soak.
The next day, We left Whitehorse and drove toward Dawson City taking a 50-mile detour up the Dempster Highway. We camped at the Tombstone Campground and the next morning took in the beautiful mountain views. While through the tundra we spotted a mountain lion crossing the road, we had no luck at seeing any grizzly bears.
We drove north to Dawson City where the 2,000 resident population doubled for Canada Day. The quaint town held a fair and short parade. Most parade participants recently completed the annual kayak/ canoe quest from Whitehouse to Dawson City along the Yukon River. We enjoyed breakfast at the Alchemy Cafe and rushed through the Dawson City Museum.
We left Dawson City via ferry and found it hard to believe that cars drive over the frozen river in the winter. We drove over the Top of the World Highway which offered a remarkable view of the McKenzie range. The dirt road went over a ridge and we soon entered US immigration.
We successfully crossed and made our way into Chicken with a population of 23 and a winter population of 7. The town offers no electric, sewage, cell phone service, or water. It gets -85 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter and the only road connecting it to the rest of the world closes. A small town named Chicken because the founders could not spell the state bird the Ptarmigan. Chicken, Ptarmigan, same same, but different. We camped in Tok and washed the Dempster Highway off the truck and bikes.