Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Riding the Rails

August 13th 2008

Today was an early morning as we headed out for an 8 hour Ultimate Railway Adventure. Soon as we departed the vessel Cyndi was jumping up and down and pointing at something. She had found a family of otters underneath the bridge we were walking across to get into town. The otters were playing and chasing each other around. We had a few minutes to walk up and down a few streets before we needed to head to the train depo. A random Alaskan woman heard us talking about breakfast and suggested a place just up the road that the locals frequent (also the only place open at that hour).

Our first adventure of the day was taking the White Pass Railway on a 65 mile journey up through Alaskan mountains at a peak of 3,292 ft. and on into Frasier, British Columbia.

We saw majestic peaks, rustic bridges, waterfalls, Bridal Veil Falls, Dead Horse Gulch and Inspiration Point and lots of FOG!

Look Ca-ne-da
At the Canadian border they checked all our passports before we were allowed to get off the train and everyone took a moment to stretch our legs. Then it was time to board the bus that took us up the Klondike Highway and onward to the Yukon.
Our guide allowed us to stop multiple times to get out and enjoy the beauty of the unspoiled wilderness, take some photos and breath in the fresh air. These photos are in front of Bove Island.
The tour guide told us that something like 90% of tourists never see any wildlife on any of the trips. He also said that the caribou and moose had mostly moved on up North for the winter already. So we didn't get our hopes up. Shortly after one of our stops a lady two rows in front of us jumped up and started yelling, "Bear! Bear! BEAR!" The driver hit the brakes and pulled over, entire bus on their feet snapping photos left and right of a small cub who was desperately trying to climb a steep incline.
This is a glacier lake it is an unbelievable aquamarine color.
Glacial lakes can be green as a result of the glacier crushing different minerals as it moves. Chunks of the glacier will break off and settle in areas carved out by the entire glacier, when the pieces melt they create a lake.
Our next stop was for lunch and boy were we hungry. We were treated to a delicious chicken barbecue with all the trimmings topped off with grandma's famous homemade donuts. We were given a couple hours to meander around the Yukon museum which had exhibits of local wildlife, visit the Dog Musher's Village with the opportunity to have a team of dogs show you what it is like to be in a dog sled race, take photos with the racing dogs and pups. There was also a "gold mining" station set up, and of course Cyndi had to go see the horses. This was on the outside of the building where we had lunch.Welcome to Carcross Desert. It is known as the smallest desert in the world. This area was originally covered by a large glacial lake, when the glaciers retreated it caused the water level to drop and it left behind a sandy lake bottom. Strong wins from Lake Bennett have beat this sand constantly making it difficult for vegetation to survive. We took note of this handwritten sign and made sure to pay for all the "treasures" we came across on our journey.

1 comment:

Darth said...

did everything seem a lot slower in canada? Did they see you shoot a basket and say wow eh, you are good and can be our center, eh?