YVR to YXY

It’s several months later and time to update ye olde travel blog for the Summer 2009 venture into the Fairly Far North.

In brief, this trip was fun as always; but it was severely hampered by weather. We had one absolutely perfect day in Ketchikan, AK; half a blue-sky day in Whitehorse; several totally awful rain days, and the rest were gray and drizzly. Well, that’s the way the mop flops.

Plane departed Friday morning YVR for YXY (that’s ATC speak for Whitehorse) at around 9 AM. The first drama was, when we got to YVR to check in, we realized we had grabbed the wrong passports (they were expired). We would be travelling from YXY to FAI (Fairbanks) 10 days hence, so it wasn’t an immediate crisis, but it was a major worry and I seriously contemplated skedaddling back to Deep Cove in the 2.0 hours remaining til departure. In the event, we relied on our awesome friends (Hi Stokes!) to send us the right ones a few days later. Major, major Whew !!

Our ride to YXY. Check out those engines, built in the 60's probably!

Our ride to YXY. Check out those engines, built in the 60's probably!

The flight was nonstop on an airline I bet you never heard of before, Air North, and a B737 that looked as if it could might have flown in WW2 or something. But AN is one of those super friendly Airlines similar to WJA, and their service was impeccable. Flight time about 2.5 hours.

Random picture of Ben in YXY. That used to be a Residence where Lenore lived when she lived up here. Now it's a hotel.

Random picture of Ben in YXY. That used to be a Residence where Lenore lived when she lived up here. Now it's a hotel.

Whitehorse (capital of the YT, of course) is < 30K people and in total I believe the entire YT, NW, NU area houses fewer people than North Vancouver. I can’t really think what to say about Whitehorse. We went on a little Parks Canada tour of one of the old YT river steamboats, where I found out that back in the day, they had an entire sub-industry devoted to clearcutting trees to power the boilers for these boats. We tried to go on a boat tour of the Yukon River, which flows thru Whitehorse, but as was quite common in the YT, we found a sign to the place but no tour there, and a few people said things like “umm I haven’t seen those guys in a while”. Hmmm. I don’t think Tourism, other than hiking and fishing, is a major strength of the YT.

This is a YT version of a traffic jam on the highway between YXY and Dawson City (the only other big city). I had to wait 10 minutes for this guy to show up.

This is a YT version of a traffic jam on the highway between YXY and Dawson City (the only other big city). I had to wait 10 minutes for this guy to show up.

In any event, we picked up our RV uneventfully on Saturday around Noon. We are old pros at the RV checkout process, which was a bit intimidating the first time (anyone who has seen the dump station scene in the movie “RV” will know what I am talking about), so we were out of there in a flash and on our way to Twin Lakes campground, of which I will speak more tomorrow.

Our home away from home. Cost: about $3,500 for 7 nights. We LOVE Cruise America!

Our home away from home. Cost: about $3,500 for 7 nights. We LOVE Cruise America!

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