Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Day 224/225 - Carmacks - Dawson City/Dawson City

Distance travelled (by bike): 32,250

A wintery start to the day, cutting north on the  highway up to Dawson City. The fog was really thick in places, i realised how thick when i nearly ran into the back of a truck. With the fog clearing i stopped at Moose Creek to warm up, the lodge was toasty, and full of Germans, which made more sense when i found it was owned and run by Germans. Having warmed up with coffee and great homemade pie it was back on the road. 
After a little detour about 100 miles up the Dempster highway i decided to turn around and get to Dawson City. i would have to turn around and return down the dempster at some point, best to save the tyres.
Dawson City was the centre of the Klondike gold rush, when gold was found in one of the creeks within 18 months over 30,000-50,000 people descended on Dawson City. Within 5 years the gold rush had moved and the population fell to under 5,000. The population is now about 1,200, with mining still a major industry along with tourism.
The city, has preserved it heritage, retaining a lot of the original buildings and architectural style. Arriving early evening i had time to look around the town before heading to Diamond Tooth Gerie's, Canadas oldest gambling hall, now a non profit casino and home to Gertie's can-can dancers. 
Being a tourist for the day. Wondering around the town, driving the surrounding area and visiting dredge 4, the largest timber dredger in north America. Operating for over 60 years, it dramatically changed the landscape surrounding Dawson, chewing through the earth at the front, seperating the gold and leaving a trail of debris behind it. 
Meeting some other bikers we decided to partake in the drinking of the fames Sourtoe cocktail. Basically some horrific spirit with a human toe in it. Started in 1973, the toe has to touch the lips of the person consuming the drink before they are recognised in the sortie cocktail club. - think the spirit was more vile than the toe - not recommended!

driving into the fog

got to love the antlers mounted on the front

part of the dredger 

the landscape left behind from the dredgers

palace theatre

the toe!!!!

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