Day 3, October 13, 1997: Whitehorse to Watson Lake, Yukon Territory

I awoke a bit later than normal this morning, possibly due to the timezone change. That didn't matter since the leg of the journey planned for today was rather short. I was greeted by an ominous leaden sky when I left the hotel. If there was ever a sky that looked as if it intended to do something, this was it. I decided to press on since nothing untoward was actually happening yet. After a bit of bother getting the GPS receiver working (it may not appreciate being left out in the cold car overnight) I got on my way at about 9:45. </p> <p> The actual drive out of Whitehorse proved to be quite nice. The sky just continued to glower and did nothing. The highway was good and then got better. On the best sections, the speed limit was up to 100kph (a bit over 60mph) and the road had actual painted lines and wide paved shoulders. It occurred to me that with the road being so improved and easily crossed in virtually any vehicle, that Alaska will be seeing a lot more bozos showing up. Then it occurred to me that this had probably already happened and they just blended in with the resident bozos. </p> <p> As I passed over the continental divide, the headwind got rather strong and made itself known by occasionally "popping" the convertible top on the Miata but caused no actual trouble. Later on a bit of blowing snow started; that eventually turned into light powder snow but not enough to cause any problems. The snow eventually did get a bit heavier about the time I pulled into <a href="> Watson Lake and that motivated me to find a hotel with decent cable service, just in case I stay here for another night. Right now it is a bit iffy whether I drive tomorrow or lay about. (a note to my mother, who reads these messages too and worries incessantly about me: "Mom, I'm not taking any chances and am not doing anything at all dangerous. Believe me.")

This is Thanksgiving Day here in Canada and I just had a "traditional" dinner at the restaurant. It looked suspiciously like a "traditional" Thanksgiving dinner in the US to me but I didn't tell them so. By the way, the cook has not a clue about making a pumpkin pie. Either that or Canadians are masochists about baked goods...

Today's picture shows a scene at Tetlin Lake. To me, the mountains in the distance looked as though they were in a losing battle to hold the clouds up. The first insert shows the steam paddlewheel boat "Discovery" in Whitehorse that used to serve the Yukon traffic. The other shows the signpost forest here in Watson Lake. It has long been a tradition for visitors to bring along a sign from their hometown or that they picked up on their journey and to hang it up in Watson Lake. Now there are many thousands of signs from all over the world. If you are missing a sign, it just may be here!

Tomorrow I may press on to Fort St. John, British Columbia if the road and weather look OK. Otherwise it is a good book and cable TV for me... And maybe the next leg of our 12,000 mile solo tour driving on the edge of the US continues.


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