That's Canada-speak (and also Alaska-speak) for folks like us who are
Once again we are using The Milepost book as one of our main
references on northwestern Canada and Alaska. We purchased the newest
edition when it became available at Amazon this spring.
In the last entry I mentioned Alaskan Camping by Mike and
Terri Church. It has lots of campground information for British Columbia
and the Yukon, as well as Alaska. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to
determine before our trip this year if a current edition was published
so we just used the same edition we bought in 2012.
About the only patch of blue sky
we saw on today's drive; rain already fell here.
Both of these books provide a wealth of information for all of the
routes to Alaska. In addition to routing and campground information, one
or both also include relevant historical and cultural facts about each
area and recreational and sight-seeing opportunities.
I think both books are indispensable during a motor trip to Alaska,
especially in remote areas where phone and internet connections are
nonexistent. The Milepost is great even if you aren't camping.
RAIN, DOGGONE IT!
Our luck with good weather ran out today. It was deja vu all over
again in this section, where it also was raining on our way north to
Alaska three years ago.
I always wonder what fabulous
scenery I'm missing when it's foggy or raining . . .
This time, fortunately, there hasn't been nearly as much rain in the
days prior to our trek or all the June snowmelt from that year. Today's
near-constant light rain and some fog just made for more difficult driving, limited
views, and hardly any photos. We don't anticipate any flooding or road washouts to hinder our
Here's today's travel information.
ROUTE: all on Alaska Highway (BC 97)
Here are the relevant map sections from
The Milepost. Read them from
the bottom to go northbound like we're doing:
DISTANCE: Only 234 miles, our shortest day so far.
Unfortunately, because of the rain we spent most of the afternoon and
evening in our camper instead of being able to enjoy a long walk and
bike ride in Fort Nelson. 7:45 AM to 12:15 PM Pacific DST = 4:35
hours with several short stops. Jim drove slower today because of the
TRAFFIC & ROAD CONDITIONS:
Moderate traffic -- more than we expected -- for about two hours north of Fort
St. John, apparently because of all the gas, oil, and lumber facilities
off the road; light the rest of the way to Fort Nelson.
"Rough Road Sections" ahead --
logging trucks (left) don't help.
This is typical of the "man camps" we can see from
the road, the housing units
for seasonal and year-long gas, oil, and lumber
crews. Other workers stay in RVs.
The road was rougher in the first part of the drive with all the work
trucks and quite smooth the last half of the distance, to our surprise.
More long hills down to rivers like the Sikanni and back up again.
Streams are full, fast, and muddy but not overflowing. Some small
marshes near the highway. Some horse and cattle ranches but mostly trees
on either side of the road.
As we traveled north and rode at 3,000-3,400 feet elevation the pine
trees were shorter and thinner, similar to those in Denali National Park
in the tiaga. I also noticed more lichens on the ground.
Wet wild roses at our campground
Still no wildflowers obvious from the road except dandelions. There are
pretty wild roses, bunchberries, and mountain bluebells at the Triple
"G" Campground. I remember those from three years ago.
WEATHER: Rain and chilly (only in the 50s F.) all day
until the sun popped out at 8 PM.
As soon as we saw that the rain had stopped, we walked the dogs next
door at the outdoor museum with all the old vehicles, equipment, signs,
While we were out it got overcast and foggy again. < sigh >
Just hope it clears up overnight so we can see all the great scenery on
our route to Watson Lake tomorrow.
TRIPLE "G" CAMPGROUND
This is our third time here overnight. We stayed in this campground both
northbound and southbound in 2012 because it was conveniently located.
This is the last
major RV park before the Alaska Highway climbs through the Rockies,
where there are fewer full and partial-hookup camping options or places
with WiFi and TV. There are several more primitive but very popular scenic campgrounds in provincial
parks like Liard River Hot Springs and Muncho Lake, however.
When we got here a little after noon we had our choice of many of the
130 sites. By suppertime the RV park was about 80% full.
We're in a site farther from the road this time so it's not as crowded
or noisy as the spots we occupied three years ago. No one was in the
sites on either side of us overnight:
As you can see from the photos there are a lot of tall trees in this
We have full hookups, a decent WiFi signal, and cable TV for $42 CA
(about 20% less in U.S. dollars). We were able to watch the CBS and ABC
evening news broadcasts, Jeopardy, and other shows Jim was interested
in. Although the weather is depressing we're warm and comfortable in our
We have our fingers crossed for a clear day tomorrow. The section from
here to Watson Lake is simply stunning on a sunny day.
Next entry: Fort Nelson, BC to Watson Lake, YT
"Runtrails & Company" - Sue Norwood, Jim O'Neil,
Cody the ultra Lab, and Casey-pup
© 2015 Sue Norwood and Jim O'Neil