Now off the Alaska Highway


Well, we have just finished three very long driving days, averaging about 11 hours per day, and we are just over halfway back to Colorado!

We passed milepost 0 (zero) of the Alaska Highway in Dawson Creek, BC, around 9:30pm pacific time, and are spending the night about 90 miles southeast of there at the Country Roads RV Park in Grande Prairie, Alberta. There apparently is a wedding taking place in the “barn” on the property here tomorrow, and the rehearsal dinner/party is in full force, with lots of country music blaring and hooting & hollering. None of which we mind, of course!

To catch you up on our last few days, here is a quick update (sans photos, I’m afraid…we have been driving too many hours each day).

We left Alaska in the pouring rain (and actually had fun taking down the RV, etc., in the rain) on Thursday around 5pm, after working most of the day fast and furiously online in order to be in a position to be without phone or email for the rest of the week and still meet our obligations. We had hoped to leave earlier in the day, but the rain and our sleepiness and work to be done all conspired against us! 🙂 But no big deal, we left at 5pm and began the trek along the Glenallen Highway to the Tok Cutoff and from there along the Alaska Highway toward Port Alcan and the Canadian border.

Our original plan for stopping destinations each day allowed for about 500 miles of driving each day, with Haines Junction, BC, as the first stop. We didn’t quite make it there, given our late departure, but ended up stopping around 2:45am and boondocking (dry camping) in a rest area along the road in the Kluane Preserve, along with about 5 other RVs plus numerous vehicles. Wildlife counts that day included a mother moose with her baby.

The next day we slept until about 10:30am and hit the road around 11, to tackle the remaining day of driving on the worst roads of the Alaska Highway. We then realized we had miscalculated the number of miles to our destination for the evening…it was actually 700 miles instead of 500 miles, so we drove about 14 hours yesterday, but still making it to our destination on Muncho Lake in B.C.

We had originally planned to dry camp in the Strawberry Flats Campground on the south end of the lake, but when we pulled it all the front sites were full, and since it was dark and nearly 2am we decided to let the lovely campers there get their rest and pulled back up the road to a wildlife viewing area we had seen near the north end of the lake. We were the only ones in the lot, and after we set up the RV we spent a few moments just staring up at one of the most incredible starlit skies we had seen since our visit to Chaco Canyon in New Mexico back in 2006. The Milky Way was fully visible, and sooooo many stars. It was wonderful! We wish we hadn’t been so tired so that we could have stayed up and just stared at the sky for a while longer, but sleep was beckoning.

We saw 2 black bears that day (right on the road!), and lots of bison, albeit after dark, which is a bit of a freaky situation to be cruising along with almost noone else on the road and suddenly see a huge buffalo standing right beside the road, grazing, with a whole herd nearby. Thankfully, they weren’t actually ON the road. 🙂

Today (well, technically yesterday) we got on the road around 11:30am and headed back to Strawberry Flats Campground, which has a nice pebbly beach with good, safe access to the lake for Chase and spent about an hour throwing tennis balls out and watching him enjoy the swim. Then we hit the road and wound our way through the beautiful BC scenery (we are IN LOVE with British Columbia), enjoying the various sights and occasional wildlife we saw, which today included a young moose right beside the road and 4 stone sheep.

Tomorrow (Sunday) will be another long day of driving (about 700 miles again), as we intend to make it to Kalispell, Montana, for the next 2 nights as we spend some time on Monday afternoon/evening with a fellow photographer and good friend of mine in Columbia Falls, who lives at the entrance to Glacier National Park. Imagine what her back yard looks like!

Tuesday morning we intend to drive to Sheridan, Wyoming, which is about 600 miles, and then on Wednesday to finish our drive back to Colorado, where we will be spending a few weeks taking care of business and just generally enjoying our beloved home state with its glorious sunshine! 🙂

Hope you’ve had a great rest of your week and are fully engaged in enjoying the weekend. We will be without phone or email again tomorrow, but once we reach the US border our phones should work again (including data…yay!) and we’ll be in a campground with internet access in Kalispell. Take care!

by candy

show hide 2 comments

08.15.2010 - 9:16 am

Joy Glad to hear you’ve completed a major portion of your trek back – welcome back to the lower 48!
And I’m glad you took time to do a little stargazing!

08.17.2010 - 12:35 am

candy Thanks Joy! The US of A is an amazing country…we’re happy to be back in the lower 48!

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