Another early start today after a good breakfast (complete with reindeer sausage) at a local greasy spoon. Then we were off to Whitehorse via Beaver Creek. The Canadian Border is just about 90 miles away down Route 1. Shortly after crossing the border, at milepost 1202, the town of Beaver Creek appears. Blink and you’ll miss the town. In fact, the Westmark Beaver Creek makes up a large portion of it. We’re only passing through today, but we’ll be back to Beaver Creek later this week.
The roads between the border and Haines Junction, Yukon, are some of the worst roads we will ride during our trip. It’s not that the Canadians aren’t good at mending them, it’s a question of weather. As we all know, extreme cold can have devastating effects on asphalt. If there’s one thing the Yukon has in spades, it’s cold.
Today as we ride to Disaster Bay, we spot a black bear along the side of the road digging in the rocks for some food. He stops and looks at us as if to pose for a picture. Thankfully, we snap a few shots and wave as we continue on our way.
As I mentioned earlier, sometimes you can go for miles and miles without any services on the roadside. Increasingly, these roadhouses and service stations are closing. The traffic, seasonal in nature, hasn’t been providing the same amount of business like it used to.
After driving by several closed service stations, motels and RV parks, we pull into Disaster Bay for lunch. As we sit down it begins to snow. Snow in May is a new concept for this New Yorker, but it’s just another day for those in Disaster Bay. The main industry here is roadwork. The AlCan highway must be constantly maintained due to all the damage caused by the harsh winters and heavy summer traffic. After a nice lunch it’s off to Whitehorse. I’m told that when we arrive we will have already traveled 700 miles since leaving Anchorage.
Overnight in Whitehorse tonight and training tomorrow.
Anthony Garofalo, a crew purser, is on a special assignment for Westmark Hotels, a Holland America Line company. Questions about Alaska, the Yukon or Westmark? E-mail Anthony at firstname.lastname@example.org.