Tuesday, May 8, 2012

On to the Yukon

Our trip today took us from Fort Nelson B.C. to Watson Lake Yukon.  We headed into the Rockies.  To build this part of the highway the Army used local trappers, hunters and bush pilots to plot out a route.
Today was a day for spotting animals.  We were not far outside of Fort Nelson when I spotted a lynx in the dry grass about 25 feet from the road.  He looked right at me.  We were going too fast for a picture.  But 60 kilometers further down the road we came upon caribou licking the road.  It had just rained in this spot and there was something they liked.  We had to drive around them.  Caribou are about a smart as cows.  Not very.

At Summit Lake a marmot popped his head up for a picture.  Really marmots are beggars. Since the Lake was still frozen, pickings had been slim for him.  He was probably hoping I would throw him a sandwich. No such luck.

Not much further on we saw some moose. Right before the big sign that said Caution Moose!

William coaxed them to turn and pose.

Toad River was the color of glacial melt water, blue-green opaque.  An elk with a big rack of antlers was hanging around the road near Muncho Lake.  The ice was cracking up on the lake.  A lot of the businesses along the highway seem to be either closed up or for sale. William says the tourist traffic to Alaska has been down.  We have met Alaskans rushing home to plant their gardens and other people headed to Alaska to visit like us.

Above Muncho Lake there is a big sign Caution Bison!  Along the cleared roadsides, about 50 feet wide, there are piles that really look like Buffalo Chips.  Finally we spot Buffalo at the Laird River.

We stop for lunch and a dip at the Laird Hot Springs. No charge as it is really not officially open yet.  But the Hot Springs are always available.  We walk about a 1/4 mile along a nice sturdy boardwalk to the springs.  There is a changing room and the pool is lovely.

We saw many more bison on the last leg of the day into Watson Lake.  We had our choice of the one RV Park in town that is open and functioning.  It has good wifi here in the laundry room and is right next to Wye Lake.  William went for a walk around the lake while I was blogging.  I was afraid he would take his discs with him and lose one on the lake ice in this howling wind.  The RV owner said it has been windy non stop for two years.  "It never used to be like this." 

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