The road to the “Last Frontier”


One of many black Bears spotted on the highway. (Scroll down for more pics at the end)

Day six was surreal. Leaving Dawson Creek we entered the “Alaska Highway”. This Highway is 1,500 miles of road built during WWII to connect the US with Canada. It begins at Dawson Creek, British Columbia and ends at Delta Junction, Alaska. It is nicknamed “the road to the last frontier”. The section from British Columbia to Yukon Territory through the Northern Rocky Mountains takes your breath away. I read online that someone once remarked that the biggest challenge on the Alaska Highway is choosing what to gawk at. This is so true! We pulled over dozens of times to take pictures and “gawk” at landscapes and wildlife. Our first stop on the side of the highway was to look at a black bear. We took about 100 pictures and several videos and he came within a few feet of our car. We were stopped for quite some time watching him. But over the course of the day, we would actually see hundreds of black bear on the side of the road, including a mama and her three small cubs. It felt like we were driving through a Yellowstone national park zoo. We saw many caribou, several herd of bison, lots of porcupines, and a gray wolf. Later that night, we actually had a small herd of bison running alongside the truck. The wildlife interaction was amazing, and it was only dwarfed by the unbelievable views. The road hugs the side of steep snow capped mountains and ascends for hundreds of miles. The mountain lakes and streams are fresh and clear, and many parts are still full of snow and ice.

It was an exciting, long, long day and we gawked at wildlife until 10:00 pm when it finally got too dark to see anything.
At one point during the day, the scenery looked like we were in the Grand Canyon. I had flashbacks from my youth and the Brady Bunch episode when Bobby met the Native American Indian kid in the Grand Canyon. We met a hodgepodge of folks along the highway but no Indians.
We were hoping to make good timing on day six, but with so many steep mountains to climb and frequent stops, we were slow going. Today’s bizarre singalong song was “I woke up in love this morning” by the Partridge family. The Brady bunch and partridge family memories, both in one day! I’m dating myself now. I was also trying to recall the words to “one ton omeda” (If you missed my earlier blog, there are no radio stations for the majority of this drive and no cell phone service, hence, I spent much of the drive singing out loud to the dog). My biggest regret is not making some old fashion mix CDs for the road. There were three CDs in the truck by happenstance ( who has music CDs anymore?) my choices were: Rebelution, Gregory Issacs and Alice in Chains. Gregory Isaacs was good and track number 6 on the Alice in Chains CD wasn’t bad.
Some day, I would like to do a road bike trip along the Alaska highway. It will be on my bucket list for sure. Nate says he’ll never drive this way again. Tomorrow is day seven and should bring us back across the U.S. border and into Alaska. Just 500 miles to go and we are home!
Stay tuned for Nate’s blog of all the mishaps and mayhem that happened on the road trip, coming soon!

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