Watson Lake (a.m.) / Whitehorse (p.m.), Canada
Date: Lodging: Distance: Total:
25/11/2001 Westmark Hotel 459 KM 232025 KM

Jim squeezes lemon juice over his halibut filet (C$22.95), which he thought nearly perfect. Halibut is in season now. We drank a Peller Estates Oakridge Chardonnay by the glass (C$5.50). Potable wine, but certainly not notable.

I could eat Alaskan Red King Crab legs all night long. The 12-ounce portion (C$29.95) kept me busy for some time. I substituted a salad for the usual potatoes and sautéed veggies.

In Whitehorse, Jim and I ate dinner at Giorgio’s, where the seafood chowder (C$4.95) was superb – thick with crab, shrimp, fish and vegetables in a tomato puree.

Driving the Alaska Highway, we see mostly evergreens – hundreds of thousands of them – but birch trees appear in a few patches.

Teslin Lake is a fisherman’s dream with lake trout, northern pike and arctic grayling abundant in the waters.

The Alaska Highway runs along Teslin Lake for several scores of kilometers.

The bridge at Teslin

The banks of the Morley River display the Yukon in winter at its finest.

A transport contraption over the Morley River

And we left BC for the Yukon once again.

During our drive we entered British Columbia again.

The upside of traveling the Alaska Highway during the winter is the road is all yours and no tourists distract from the awesome scenery. Yet, many services, motels and sites are closed, so fuel, food and lodging aren't things that can be taken for granted.

A late sun rise, around 8:45 a.m., over the outskirts of Watson Lake

Next time, we'll bring a sign to add to this fantastic display.

Thousands of signs boasting nameless folks’ hometowns fill Signpost Forest in Watson Lake.

Signpost Forest has about 30, 000 signs.

Watson Lake, population 1800, is home of the Signpost Forest. This now incredible display is said to have begun when a homesick soldier, working on the Alaska Highway, posted a sign with mileage to his hometown. Others followed.

We began our morning in Watson Lake, known as Canada’s gateway to the Yukon.

The Yukon: Welcome to North of 60 (i.e. 60th parallel of latitude)

25 November 2001 – After viewing the Signpost Forest, filled with city signs from all over the world, we stopped at a truck stop for breakfast on our way out of Watson Lake. A couple of older men, sipping coffee out of Styrofoam cups, sat at a table beside us and I asked them what they did around here. With a deep, from-the-gut chuckle, one replied, “Not much at all.” He went on to say they both mine for gold and jade, but the mining takes place mostly from July through September. I said, I hope it pays well to support you the other nine months of the year, to which he only smiled. I asked about all the trees we see and he explained that logging doesn't pay, since there’s no local market and lack of accessibility to genuine markets is “pretty near impossible from the Wilderness.” They finished their coffee, wished us well and drove off together in an weather-worn, red Chevy truck.

Signpost Forest