This is our second day on the Dempster Highway in the beautiful Yukon
country and we drive just short of 200 km (120 mi) today. The roads are gravel but although some places
are good road, not all of them are. Our speed is slow most of the time, we
spend about 8 hours of our day driving.
We woke up to a beautiful sunny morning at Elephant Rock and enjoyed
our morning coffee beside the Ogilvie River.
We were usually on the road by 8:30 am but we weren’t in a hurry this
morning and didn’t leave until 9:30 am.
|Ogilvie River morning fog|
We stopped at each viewpoint we came to. The day was beautiful and the sights were
spectacular. Ogilive Ridge – Gwazhal
Kak, which means “swollen up” was at the top of a seven mile hill.
This view reaches 180 km (112 mi) over the Ogilvie-Peel River
systems. The Ogilvie River is one of 6 rivers that flow
from the Ogilvie Mountains into the Peel River in the low lying plateaus. These six tributaries run into the Peel River,
part of the McKenzie River watershed, which is the largest one in Canada.
|Ogilvie-Peel River system|
The Peel River is 440 kilometres (274 mi) long and the watershed
is crucial for the habitat living in the
area. It would be interesting to see what
lives out there in the valley but we weren’t about to go down there to find
out. The fireweed, Yukon’s national
official floral emblem frames the view of the valley beautifully.
|Fireweed overlooks the Ogilvie-Peel plateau|
We stopped at Eagle Plains, the halfway point that has a population of
8! It is a good place to stop for fuel,
lunch and even wash the RV’s to remove some of the mud on there. There is a hotel that is open year round as
well as a restaurant where we enjoyed a good lunch. That is all there is.
|RV wash at Eagle Plains|
Midday temperature was about 16C (60F) and we are on our way again with
cleaner vehicles and full tanks. The
green mountains and valleys continue as we cross the Eagle Plains and make our
way north. We are between the Ogilvie
Mountains to the south of us and the Richardson Mountains to the north. The great views continue!
|Dempster Highway, Yukon|
They say there is a first time for everything, and this was definitely
the case with this sight. This stretch
of road is also used as an airstrip! The
sign tells us there is no stopping or parking on this road. I doubt its a busy strip but when someone
needs to land an airplane up here, this is the place to come.
|Airstrip on the Dempster Highway|
|We are at the Arctic Circle in Yukon|
We have arrived at the Arctic Circle!
There is a large rest area at this point and this is where we will stay
the night. We make this our night stop
both times we travel the Dempster Highway.
With no one else here, we park and put our chairs outside to enjoy the
amazing view. A young couple who we’d
spoken with at Eagle Plains stopped and had a visit before they moved on. The wind was pretty strong but there were no
mosquitoes to deal with.
We sat outside and watched the lightning show as it made its way
toward us before the storm forced us to go inside.
The rain passed over and by 10:30 pm the bright sun was shining again…..at
the Arctic Circle!
|Storm is coming to the Arctic Circle|