Organ Pipe National Park

Organ Pipe National Park

About Me

I purchased "Sadie''s House On Wheels "in late 2007 and loved traveling in a motor home so much that I went on the road full time in late 2008. I started writing this blog to help me remember all the wonder places I have been and it allows me to share those places with my family and friends. Summer of 2013 I decided to hang up the keys for a while and moved back into my stick house. After nearly two years, I am on the road again.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

June 8, Top of the World Highway

Today we leave the Klondike Highway and head over to the Top of the World Highway towards, Eagle AK.  I have my doubts as to whether  or not we will make it to Eagle, which is more than 150 miles of dirt roads. We have been barely averaging 100 miles a day on good paved roads.  Our first challenge is to get across the Yukon river on the government run ferry.  It runs continuously on demand 22 hours a day during the summer. It stops for a few hours daily for maintenance.

Nancy and I were the first to be loaded and get a cross the river.

Then Liz:

And then Bill.  Bill's rig is so long he had to wait a little for his turn and then the other vehicles were loaded around  him.

I was amazed at how close the workers were able to judge the length of the vehicles and get them on.  They didn't use a measuring tape or any other measuring device.  Its a good thing they were accurate. It wouldn't have been much fun to have to unhook and back off the towed or rig because they misjudged.

The day was not the best day for taking pictures or driving.  We encountered everything from limited sunshine to pouring rain to hail, all while driving on a dirt roads dodging potholes.  There were a few scary times when the mud was so slick and thick it was worse than  driving in snow, and the hail was so thick it was like driving in snow.  Not a good time to take "wind shield" pictures.

                                        This part was really slick.

                                          This is pretty typical of what we saw.

The brown areas are from a large forest fire from 2005-2005

We were delayed at Customs because their internet system was down and they had to phone in and verify our passport numbers vs scan them.  What did they use to do before bar codes? I don't remember border patrol doing anything but looking at passport before to make sure the pictures matched. Anyway, the delay was almost an hour. It was a good thing I had a lot of reading material to catch up on. The border patrol inspected each of our vehicles, although he didn't spend much time in mine and he didn't even ask for Sadie's papers.

I was  really happy to see the  "Welcome to Alaska" sign once we crossed the border.   Although, I enjoyed the Yukon and BC my cell phone never really worked will there. It seemed once I was back in the "states" it started to work much better. The Yukon is really a raw and wild place...for the hardy.

The top of the world highway really is above it all.  Actually, the altitude is not all that high.  I think the highest point was about 3500 feet. It just seems like you drive forever on top.

                                           This is the cairn marking the top.

You can see the meandering along the top forever.

Everywhere we have gone the past few weeks we get the same story about how warm it has been and how much the rain is needed and is appreciated.  One advantage to the rain is that the wildflowers are blooming a tad earlier than usual.  The picture doesn't do the lupins justice.  They were all over the side of the road and on the hill sides.

                                 Near the Dome Wayside

After about 85 miles of  wet, muddy, pot holed dirt roads we stopped at the Jakes Junction, the fork in the road to Eagle, to assess if we were going to continue for the day.  We decided not to drive our motor homes another 70 miles on steep, muddy, curvy, roads to Eagle, but down the road until we could find a spot to camp for the night and maybe make a day trip to Eagle. It was still raining and the clouds threatened more. We only went  about fives miles before we found a perfect spot and pulled off for the night in  near a very nice meadow near a creek.  It had taken us all day just to drive 90 miles. Just after we got settled, the skies opened up and poured very heavy rain for what seemed like hours and through out the night.

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