Tag Archives: driving

Ness Church Cemetery

Litchfield, Minnesota


Toad River, British Columbia

Film Friday:

The Toad River Lodge

Camera: Kodak 66; Film: Kodak 120, Tri-X 400


Bridal Veil Falls

Keystone Canyon; Valdez, Alaska


AlCan Stop

Film Friday:

Camera: Kodak 66; Film: Kodak 120, Ektar 100


Denali peeks through

Just the peak of Denali showing itself on the left

Denali was out on Sunday, making for the first time I’ve seen the mountain this summer. The picture was taken from the Northern viewpoint along the Parks Highway.


Devil’s Tower

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Alaska

A Pandemic Roadtrip: Final Installment

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Crossing the border

After the strip down search my car suffered getting into Canada, I wasn’t sure what to expect from the U.S. Border Patrol.  The officer was professional and to the point, and after a quick exchange of identification, I was welcomed back home.  For the first time, I was asked for my car’s registration, but other than that, everything was par for the course.

3651 miles traveled.

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Back on Alaska roads

 


Welcome to the Yukon

A Pandemic Roadtrip: Part Six

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Mile Marker 585

The Yukon; finally I was in the Yukon Territory.  I have nothing against B.C., but now Alaska is in the sights.

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The AlCan is not fully paved

Don’t let anyone fool you, the Alaska Highway is not completely paved.  It’s close, but it’s not complete.  The Yukon always has sections that are gravel, and the sections go on for miles.  It can be a bit dusty, especially when a semi truck is in front of you.

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Muncho Lake

I admit the gravel travel is worth it once you come across Muncho Lake.  The  jade colored waters light up even on a dreary day.  “Muncho” in the Kaska language translates to “big water”, and it is that,

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Kluane Lake

Kluane Lake is the largest lake within the Yukon, that lies entirely within its borders.  It’s a huge lake, and in normal years there is a visitor’s center that is worth a stop.  This year, due to Covid-19, it was closed.

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Another river to cross, but we’re getting closer

There were many businesses and sights closed to the public along the entire route.  Places that I have historically stopped at for food or gas, were closed.  Laird Hotsprings, a very popular natural swimming hole and gathering place, was completely shut down.  For much of the route through northern British Columbia and across the Yukon, there were signs out on the road frontage thanking truckers.  After a while, it made total sense.  There is no one else driving these roads; just the truck drivers.  One place I stopped at, near the Alaska border, there was a sign out front, and I did ask the owner about it.  He told me that the truckers were the only reason he was open and able to stay afloat.  No tourists, and only a few Alaskans like me, trying to get home.

Final stop for the night: Haines Junction, YT

 


Alaska Bound: Round 2

Film Friday:

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Camper Special

A friend recently sent me this photo.  I came back to Minnesota a year after first driving up to Alaska, because I needed a pickup, and vehicles can be expensive in Alaska, and often beat on.  I forget all of the details, but it’s possible, I simply wanted to drive the AlCan again.

I found a 1966 Chevrolet C20, Camper Special in one of the auto trade magazines that were around back at the time.  It came with bald, bias-ply tires, but a sound 327 engine, and a rather smooth ride, compared to my Bronco.  I didn’t have anything in the trailer that belonged to me, but the canoe riding on the top is mine.  I sent my Dad into a state of mild depression, when he saw what I was about to drive for 4000 miles.

I bought a set of tires, replaced all fluids, hoses and belts, and the truck made it to Alaska without so much as a hiccup.


Toad River

A Pandemic Roadtrip: Part Five

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Looking out my cabin door; Toad River Lodge

I pushed the mileage to just under 650 on this day, getting to Toad River at around 8pm.  A shortcut on Highway 29 meant that I could avoid Fort St John, but there was a major construction project on 29, so I doubt it cut off much time.  Still, it was a highway I had not driven previously, and it’s always good to get in some new territory.

Overall, this part of B.C. is just stunning country, and there was wildlife galore.  Black bears and bison, for the most part, but I did see a couple of moose.

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Inside the Toad River Lodge: They collect hats.

My usual layover in this part of British Columbia is at the Toad River Lodge, and I swung in here once again.  I’ve written about this lodge on here before, but I can offer a quick refresher.  On my second drive to Alaska, I was driving a slightly older Chevy pickup, pulling a UHaul trailer.  I don’t believe I had anything in the trailer, it was full of stuff a buddy of mine talked me into hauling up for him. I did make use of the trailer roof though.  I pulled into the Toad River Lodge on that trek to Alaska, and watched a single engine aircraft land alongside the Alaska Highway, and then promptly taxi down the highway, where it pulled in front of the Toad River Lodge.  They landed for some breakfast.  I knew this was my kind of country at that moment.

They are currently doing a lot of work to the lodge.  The old, and probably original cabin I stayed at, is no longer standing.  Several new cabins, with running water even, now stand along the lake shore.  I rented one of those new, fangled cabins for the night.  Not as cozy, and without a bit of atmosphere, but I had a sound night of sleep.