wonderful weeks, it was finally time to end the first phase of our summer
adventure and leave Southeast Alaska. Our
time here seemed to fly by, and we thoroughly enjoyed our extended stay. I’m so glad we originally set aside a month
to visit the many towns along the Inside Passage. This area is very special and getting around
by ferry has been a unique experience.
Tuesday morning we put the RV in gear and headed north on the Haines
Highway. Destination – the Yukon and the
interior of Alaska. Thus began the start
of the second phase of our adventure.
This area is much more of an unknown to us as we’ve done only a bit of
research on what there is to see. We
have no plans and only a general idea of the direction in which we are headed. Southeast Alaska was much more scripted. Now we’ll be flying by the seat of our
pants. I can’t wait!
quick stop at the grocery store, we were on the road by 10:30 am, which is pretty
good for us. We aren’t exactly morning
people, although we’ve had our fair share of early mornings so far. The skies were overcast, but no rain was
forecast, and I was looking forward to getting back on the road.
Haines Highway has been designated as a National Scenic Byway, and the road
lived up to its reputation. We followed
the Chilkat and Klehini Rivers before reaching the Canadian border after just
40 miles. Entering into Canada could not
have been easier. Just the few standard
questions and a quick scan of our passports, and we were on our way. Tim was happy he didn’t have to stop at Immigration this time. After passing
through the northern tip of British Columbia, we soon crossed into the
|A Scenic Viewpoint along the Klehini River|
|No One at the Border|
|Welcome to British Columbia|
|And Then, Welcome to the Yukon|
the overcast skies, the drive was just as beautiful as I had hoped. We climbed from the coastal forests to the
alpine tundra and were treated to stunning glacier and mountain views in all
directions. As we climbed to the Chilkat
Pass summit, the clouds were especially dramatic.
|Climbing toward the Alpine Tundra|
|Clouds at Chilkat Pass, the Haines Highway Summit|
|A Wide Alpine Valley|
felt as if we were in the middle of a vast wilderness. For the most part we were alone on the
highway. We passed only a handful of
cars and RVs heading south, but no one was going in our direction.
|One of a Handful of Other Vehicles on the Highway|
was in great condition, except for a several-mile stretch that was under
construction. While we waited for the
pilot car to guide us through the construction zone, we had a nice chat with
the flagger. I’m sure this road will
spoil us for what we know to be ahead.
We’ve heard the warnings for the section of the Alaska Highway on which
we will soon be driving.
addition to the dramatic scenery, the highlight of the day was seeing a large
bear crossing the highway just in front of us.
Tim and I both spotted him at the same time, we and were able to stop
and watch him for a short while before he disappeared into the woods. That was very cool! It’s also how I like to see bears – from the
safe confines of the RV.
|Stop, I Want to Take Your Photograph|
|Don't Hide from Me|
thought we would drive about 240 miles today, but we forgot about losing an
hour as we crossed into Canada, plus we hadn’t driven in quite a long time. So, after only 135 miles we pulled into
Kluane National Park and decided to stop for the day.
contains the largest non-polar icefields in the world, as well as Canada’s
highest mountain, Mount Logan. Kluane
National Park and Reserve, Wrangell-St. Elias and Glacier Bay National Parks in
Alaska and Tatshenshini-Alsek Park in British Columbia form the largest
internationally protected area in the world.
This enormous area is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is recognized as
a globally significant mountain wilderness.
Lake is one of the very few developed areas within Kluane National Park, and
that was our destination. Because it was
very windy and cold at the lake, we didn’t tarry. Instead we headed directly to Kathleen Lake
Campground and settled in for the evening.
Only a few campsites have a slight view of the lake through the trees, but
it’s a beautiful campground, and it’s nice to be back in a more natural setting,
with lots of privacy, once again.
|A Prettier View of Kathleen Lake in Kluane National Park the Next Morning|
|Mountain Wildflowers along the Way|
Looks like the second phase of your AK trip is off to a great start. Love all those colorful flowers ... esp. the fireweed.ReplyDelete
We're on our way! All of the flowers we've seen have been beautiful, including the ones in the towns we visited.Delete
After the Cassiar and the Alaska highways, we felt we were transported to a private luxury highway. Yes, I know they don't exist, but like you, we were the only ones there and it was so smooth and so beautiful...ReplyDelete
We absolutely loved the Haines Highway. It was gorgeous, and so peaceful. What I can't figure out is how you made it all the way to Tok in one day. We were ready to stop before Haines Junction!Delete