Day eight starts off with a shower for me and the Wee. I let the dew dry off the tent before packing up. back into Dawson for breakfast, at a bakery cafe. They mass produce breakfast sandwiches, that are very popular. Very busy place. I sit at the little bar, and wolf my food, and drink my coffee. Today I would be riding up into Tombstone National park, up the Dempster Hwy. I would take a side trip up to another massive gold dredger, not far out of town.One last ride around town, down the backstreets a couple of laps, then head out. The road to the Dredger snakes off the hwy, and soon I come to a little place where you can pan for gold etc...
this dredger is massive, i almost took a tour, but it was long and I wanted to get going. pretty interesting story on these gold dredgers. They were all built near where they were used. Looks like this one saw lots of action. The area creeks around Dawson city had all been dredged buy this big guy. All the materials were hauled up by ship train. steamship etc..
I left and made my way back to the main road. A few Kms down the road is the Dempster Hwy junction. There is a lodge there with a gas station, and a cafe. I fueled up here, and took a few pics of the entrance to the Dempser.
I was stoked to head up the Dempster, I had been reading all about it for months before the trip. I had to make my most painful decision of the trip today, Ride to Inuvik, or at least to the Arctic Circle, or ride into Tombstone, and do some hiking/ exploring, and have a short day on the bike. What a tough decision. I was not sure I had enough time to ride the entire way to Inuvik and back. Most people take two days in, and back out. I was really torn, I wished I had someone else here with me to make the decision. In the end I decided to ride to Tombstone Park, and set up camp.
The mountains around here have a red hue to them, and are bare of trees for the most part. The road is in great shape, and I fly to my destination.
The road in;
Tombstone park is large, and there is a lot to see. I arrived at the Park interprative center, and looked around inside for a while. pretty informative place. i left to find a campsite, just down the road.
Found a nice secluded spot, right beside the Klondike river. The view was incredible. I was now happy to be spending some time here. The weather was sunny, and warm, what a great day and place to be alive
I set up camp,
and grab some fire wood, I decide to take a walk down to the river through a little trail off my campsite.
I take a longer walk around the campground, and find a trail worth exploring.
It winds its way along the river, and I continue for a long ways, until I am all alone. Lots of cool vegetation growing here;
My butt is happy to be off the bike now, and i am feeling relaxed! walk along the river and there are places to walk out across it a bit, with stepping stones, and little dividing channels.
I return to my campite, and have some lunch. looking around I am overwhelmed at the scenery. This is one of the highlights of the trip, just being here and chilling out for a few hours. Eventually I succumb to the bike calling me, and its time to do some two wheeled exploring
I could see the road climbing up a hill from my walk, so I head up there to check out the view;
The jagged peak in the distance is Tombstone mountain. here it is close up;
and one more time
I seem to have a big smile on my face
I must like it here....Down the road a few more Kms looks like this;
I keep heading north, the scenery is awesome. I am having a blast just exploring, and stopping lots to take pictures. The bike feels agile, without all my gear on it, I can go as fast or slow as I want. I only see a few cars along the way.
Some of the sights along the way;
I have been out riding for several hours now, there is lots of light left, and I am having way to much fun. i wish I had someone to share this experience with
But I get over it fast
I am cruising along taking in the scenery, I come to a marsh area, ride by this sight! I kill the bike, so I don't spook them, and coast a bit further down the road, and come to a stop, and back track to where I get these pictures;
I took a bunch more but these are the best ones. finally I see Moose
I sat and watched them for a while, mom sent her calf away for a bit, but he came back to be close to mom. What a sight. I decide to leave them alone to dine on marsh grass, and walk back to the bike. A pickup truck pulls up, and I worry they will shoot the moose! Turns out they are a first nations family from Inuvik, heading to Whitehorse for supplies. we talk about the moose for a bit, and they ask me what I doing out here, with no gear on my bike. I tell them I am camping at Tombstone, and they seem relieved, that I am not suicidal
We wish each other a safe trip and they head south, I continue north. Just uo from where I see the moose, I come to a lake; The name seems fitting;
Self portrait timer shot;
Further down the road;
The northern boundary of Tombstone park;
I see a trail leading down to the river the road follows, and ride down it to take some pics;
I get back on the main road and ride a bit further north. Its getting late by now, about 9:00pm, I don't want to turn back just yet. I still have maybe two hours before it gets dark, but I don't want to push my luck out here.
By the time I took this picture I have turned around and started heading back. I see a wolf crossing the road ahead of me, but it hides in the brush when I try to get a picture, and is gone. It was to large to be a coyote, I have seen lots of those before.
I see a trail head sign going up a steep side road, so I decide to check it out;
A great view from here, Goldensides looks like a great trail.
i ride back down to the main road again, and make my way back to the campsite, its about 10:00pm now, still lots of light left
A couple more pics; This one is still my on my computer screen, one of my favorite pics of this trip.
At this view point you can ride down below the sign, and have a bit of fun;
Back at camp, time for a late dinner. I was hungry, so i cooked up some food, and relaxed.
The view from my spot.
Ok maybe i was starting to get a little lonely;
The fire was nice and warm, it was really starting to get cold when the sun goes gone this far north.
This next picture was taken around 11:00pm;
I went to bed around midnight. another great day. Tomorrow I would start making my way south, and homeward. I did think about finding gas from a camper, and heading up the Dempster to Inuvik though
Dawson to Tombstone park and beyond, about 300km.