03 July 2010

not-so-brief update with pictures

The last two days have been insanely long. The combined trips from Lloyminster, AB to Ft. St. John, BC (yesterday) to Watson Lake, YT (today) total 1,800 miles now behind us. The good news is that the kids are doing fine, the animals have been great, and we are now in the very last leg of our journey! We will have about 7 hours left in the car tomorrow before we reach Skagway, AK, where we will stay overnight and load up onto the ferry to Sitka Monday morning. I cannot begin to tell you just how exhausted we all are now, but the end is in sight and we are very excited and nervous about what the next few days will bring us. First things first: the only obstacle we anticipate before getting on the ferry is getting back through customs with 4 humans, 3 pets, and our poor over-burdened car.

I know all any of you want is to see pictures, so enjoy the ride:

Entering Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

Stretching our legs at a park in Edmonton, Alberta.

A pretty wood strut bridge we passed under somewhere in Alberta.

Moose crossing.

Now entering the Alaska Highway.

At some point along the way, we spotted a sign that indicated a 10K detour along the Old Alaska Highway that would include a historic bridge. We took the detour since it wouldn't set us back too much from our schedule and what we found was pretty amazing. The bridge appears to be entirely made of wood and it is curved to join two roads that lie at odd angles from each other on each side of a large river:

Driving over the historic (1942) Kiskatinaw Bridge.

Side view of the Kiskatinaw Bridge.

British Columbia has some of the most spectacular views we have ever seen. We drove right through the Canadian Rockies and it was just beautiful. On previous road trips we have made the drive through Vale and Aspen in the Colorado Rockies, but none of that even holds a candle to what we saw while driving through B.C.:

Canadian Rocky Mountains along the Alaska Highway.

One of many lakes nestled in between the mountains.

View from a rest area off of the highway.

Same rest area.

There were signs warning of wildlife all along the highway and they weren't kidding! Just today we saw one rabbit, one red fox, herds of sheep, several moose (one infant), a herd of wild horses, too many deer to count, half a dozen or more wild bison, one grizzly bear, half a dozen or more other bears (3 cubs), and a whole slew of amazing birds including loons, eagles, hawks, geese, ducks, and more.

Deadly sheep.

A bison blocking an access road.

One of several black bears we saw.

As a final note for tonight, I want to shamelessly plug an amazing little cafe we encountered in Fort Nelson, B.C., Mama & Papa's Cafe. Everything they serve is homemade and preservative-free, and (most importantly) outstanding in every way. We each had Club sandwiches and clam & salmon chowder. The sandwiches were big enough to be served in any respectable Jewish deli and the chowder was so good, we promised to return whenever we found ourselves within 100 miles of Fort Nelson. Yes, it was that good. Beyond all of that, we found Mama & Papa (the cafe's namesake are the owners and only employees) to be charming people who love to chat up travelers and dote on children. So, if you're ever in British Columbia and find yourself on the Alaska Highway, be sure to stop off at Fort Nelson to fuel up the car and yourself.


  1. it's nice to hear that things are moving forward to the future. you know how excited i am for you. if i could say the same for me and keep up with things, we would all be in good shape. i know that i look forward to the drive, if i can make it happen, though i don't know about a round tirp on the ferry from what i saw of the cost. i am confused: i thiought there was a transcanadian highway and you didn't get on the alaska highway until you were in alaska. being too lazy to google it, i look forward to hearing how you fill it in. and 3 pets? i'm missing something.

    good luck with customs and driving. i hoe you find more places like mama and papa's before you reach this journey's end. safe travels and happy trails.


  2. Great! Nice pictures...we miss you!