Week 146 - Alaska or Dust - 05-31-2009
Top of the World to you,
This week we crossed the Yukon River at Dawson City
off to Chicken
, Alaska. Since we entered Canada we have been in
email contact with our SOWERS
(Servants on Wheels Ever Ready)
and his lovely wife Rosie
. They were
trailing behind us by about a week, also headed for Alaska. With our
side trip to Dawson City and Chicken, we arrived in Tok
find that they were there at a different RV park. So we joined John
and Rosie's convoy and followed them to the end of the Alaska Highway. By the end of the week we all reached North Pole.
This was our view on the little ferry across the Yukon River
. No problems mate!
The Top of the World Highway
is 109 miles from Dawson City to
Chicken. We were following shortly behind a group of 10 German couples
in rental motorhomes.
As you can see the highway snakes it way along, mostly on or close to
the crest of the mountains. The 66 mile Canadian section, is 33
miles of payment
and 33 miles of very smooth gravel.
slowest speed was 35 mph and the highest was 60 and that was on the
At the 66 mile marker you reach Alaska at Poker Creek. There was not a
town or even a building, as far as we can remember on the Canadian
side. It was pretty exciting to see a city mileage sign. Bound(a
was only 4 miles away.
But what a 4 miles! Unlike the Canadian road, the USA side was 43
miles of dirt and gravel
and looked more like a 4 wheel drive trail
then a RV highway.
was one of the first roadhouses in Alaska established
. The building below, most likely, was the original
roadhouse. The store in the previous pictures has a sign indicating
that gas is for sale. Perhaps so, the pumps look to be in nice
condition. But as we passed we noticed the price per gallon was
. We didn't stop to ask. If you would like to visit their
store, you don't have to drive there. You can land your private plane
on the airstrip
just a few hundred feet away.
This passenger bus was hauling the mail. We however had to drive as slow
as 20 mph
and our highest speed was 20 mph
. Let's do the
math, add low to high, divide by 2 and carry . . .
averaged 20 mph!
1) At 20 mph the ride was fairly smooth but the dust behind us would
sometimes totally block any view out the mirrors and camera. 2) And finally a view
looking down on Chicken.
The Alaska road department put up directions to Downtown Chicken as the
main road bypasses it. The locals however had a much more interesting idea.
is comprised of one building with three stores:
The Mercantile Emporium, Saloon and Cafe. The Cafe had free WiFi
1) While mild, you can see the dip
in the road caused by
. 2) Arriving in Tok we stayed at Tok Village which
had a nice RV wash. We washed the outside, taking a layer of dust off
(see it in a picture below). Ellen cleaned the inside as we would now
enjoy paved roads, at least for a few weeks.
After meeting John and Rosie in Tok, we joined their caravan. Here we
parked at the Delta Meat and Sausage Co
1) Pete with his favorite SOWERS GL (group leader) John. 2) The SOWERS
stop for lunch at Delta Junction. From front to back are: Naomi
(on camera) and Pete
Delta Junction is the end of the Alaska Highway
. We did not do
the research (we will) but are assuming that the Alaska Highway ended
here as the Richardson Highway to Fairbanks was already in place in
The SOWERS team dry camped two nights at Rika's Roadhouse
miles north of Delta Junction.
There was great fellowship
at Rika's. Note: Bring or meet your
1) After 109 miles of the Top of the World highway (76 miles are dirt or
gravel), we got a little bit of dust
on the Mothership. 2)
Servant John cleaned our air filter and left a 1/2 inch of writable
residue on the railroad tie.
So that was the Alaska Highway. 1422 miles
starting at Dawson
, Yukon and ending at Delta Junction
, Alaska. Well,
not quite the whole highway. Our trip on the Top of the World had us
skipping 290 miles of the ALCAN. And from all reports, that section is
the worst of all the roads that we will have been on. That report will
come in August or September when we had back toward Canada.
Ellen got a photo of a recluse moose
at Delta Junction.
Aaaah, the end of a tough week of roads found us arriving at the North
. One of Santa's reindeer is resting up as it is only 208 days until Christmas. According to Wikipedia, Santa's reindeer must be
women or boys as by December the older males have lost their antlers
for the year. The photo of the reindeer looks like we converted it to Sepia, but we did not. These were the actual colors.
Next week(s) we will join the SOWERS team in a project at Camp Li-WA
in Fairbanks. We will be completing the construction of the boys and
girls bathhouses at the camp and other projects as directed. You can
always visit Alaska, but why not serve the Lord while you are there?
Until next week,
Love, Pete and Ellen
Photos from May 2009