|What we've been doing - last updated August 26
The road known as the Top of the World Highway was a spectacular but dusty introduction to the Yukon. "Top of the World" refers to the fact that instead of following the river valleys like most roads, this one follows the top of the mountains for reasons unknown to us. This was the only road that we travelled in Alaska and Yukon that was all gravel.
Dawson City was of course, the center of the Klondike Gold Discovery at Bonanza Creek in 1896. The streets are still unpaved with boardwalks and many of the buildings are original. In fact, we visited the actual cabins of Jack London (author of the short story "Call of the Wild") and of Robert Service(author of the poem" The Cremation of Sam McGee"). We also visited the childhood home of Canadian author Pierre Burton which is being used by guest writers.
After spending too much time at Diamond Tooth Gerties Saloon, we went to the Downtown Hotel to do the famous Sourtoe Cocktail thing. This is a kind of club. You can become a member by drinking a whiskey with a real toe in one gulp and the toe must touch your lips. Bill is now a proud member as evidenced by the photos above. The toe is that of a woman from Edmonton, Alberta. They are always on the lookout for more toes because some get swallowed.
We drove to Skagway, Alaska and slept in the van overnight so that we could catch the early morning steam train. This is the Whitepass and Yukon Route narrow guage railroad that was built to replace the dangerous Chilkoot Pass that the early prospectors had to use to get to the Goldfields. It was a long 8 hour ride but it seemed too short because of the spectacular scenery and historical sites.
On the way out of the Yukon, we visited the Signpost Forest in Watson Lake. This collection of signposts was started by a lonesome American soldier in 1942 when he was working on the Alaska Highway. There are now over 40,000 signs from around the world.
We have had a wonderful adventure but sadly it is complete and we have started home.