Day 30, Dawson (again!)


I woke up around 1:30 am and took another look out the front window and saw a bit of a glow in the sky. Not the dancing lights that are during strong showings. This night was on a scale of 3 out of 10 by the University of Alaska standards. It was at least clear!

Northern Lights “light”

Back to bed I went to awaken at around 7:30.  We had a quick light breakfast and started packing up and buttoning down to be in the move for 9 ish.  Dawson bound this am.  The last 72 kms of the Dempster today… the in spite of the potholed, washboard, stone throwing ride would be sad to leave indeed!

As we travelled south we could literally see the trees thicken and climbing higher in the mountains as we drove.

Here’s the ridge we summited yesterday – taken from the car park
Heading south through the Taiga range
Trees are getting a little larger

It being a Monday, the road crews were out in force trying to grade and repair the ever changing roads.  Every rain it’s the same thing.  Plus during a rain the surface can become so unstable the washboard on a curve will bounce you right off the road.  We passed by a large piece of equipment trying to be hauled out of the ditch today, reminding us once again how unforgiving this road can be.

Big trucks hauling big trucks out of the ditch! When the surface is wet, it is easy to hydroplane. It looks like this rig jack knifed!

We finally reached the end of the Dempster and turned toward Dawson. Dawson is at about the same latitude as Anchorage Alaska, and we had just travelled south 550 km to get to Dawson!

Last few feet of dirt road on the Dempster before the bridge

Once off the Dempster, we decided to drive up Bonanza drive to see the last of the National Park Historic Sites here, Dredge #4.

Dredge #4, massive claws attached to a conveyor would lift the rock and silt to be sifted for gold…ran almost 24/7!
This dredge captured 9 tons of gold during it’s lifetime operated from 1913 to 1959.

Once there we went back into the visitor’s centre for the WiFi ( nothing outside of Eagle Plains on the Dempster) and got caught up on emails and such. We also spoke with a wonderful staff person who gave us great advice on camp groups in and around Whitehorse. We decided to change our plans of camping in Dawson and simply filled up with gas/propane and fresh water for our travels.

A car wash consists of a power washer! Needed to wash the RV before we could fill it with propane. That dust got into everything!

While there we stopped on a delightful bistro on the main drag and ran into our friend Mercy!  She was staying the night in Dawson, and we traded Dempster stories from the last couple of days and then our contact info and we were off.

Our new destination was Twin Lakes Campground, in between Carmacks and Whitehorse. This gives us an easy drive into Whitehorse for a mini provisioning and then onto our next spot at Atlin. Our “advisor” told us that this place was heaven. It’s actually in BC but the only road there is from the Yukon! We’ll try that for the next couple of nights then head over the Carcross before returning to Whitehorse for one last night.

We drove through lots of road construction and winding mountain roads, but finally made it to Twin Lakes campground.  What a spot!  At 8:45pm, our site, nestled amongst aspen and overlooking a beautiful lake was perfect! 

We had lots of dirt road on the highway back to Whitehorse as well!
So much for the RV wash!

I made us a quick dinner and we settled in with our drinks to relax. We had driven another 500 kms almost straight south again today. Although it was light when we got to our campsite, it’s almost dark at 10:20 pm as I write this. (We haven’t seen darkness when we were on the Dempster unless we set an alarm!). It is also noticeably warmer! We actually have the windows open in the RV, and probably won’t need the heater tonight! Life’s simple pleasures!

Our Campsite at Twin Lakes
A winding path from our campsite led down to the lake
Dan looking pleased as punch to stop driving!!!

All in all it’s been a long day. As I write this a loon just called, lulling us to our beds. It’s not a hard sell tonight! Until tomorrow, stay safe!

Categories: 2021 C2C2C Exploring Canada from Coast to Coast to Coast - a 40th Anniversary Tour

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