Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Whitehorse Yukon Territory

We reached Whitehorse on Monday. Whitehorse is the capital of the Yukon Territory, and a city of 25,000 people. It has many historic things to see here so we decided to stay over one day to see them. We started our day in Miles Canyon,  thinking we would take a short hike to see the gorge of the Yukon River. In our initial view of the canyon we saw an interesting example of what is called columnar jointing. The lava walls look like bundles of straight posts. Above the walls is a suspension bridge which we crossed to start our hike.
That little hike turned out to be at least a couple of miles because we decided that while at the canyon it would be great to see the location of the now abandoned site of Canyon city. Before a dam was built in this area the rapids of the river were too strong for the gold miners to traverse in their boats. It was necessary at Canyon city to go on shore and load their supplies on carts. From there they would  travel over land for part of their journey to the gold fields. We did a bit of strenuous hiking up and down the river bluffs to find that site. All that is there now are two carts and a midden of tin cans which are probably 100 years old.
From the canyon we drove into the town of Whitehorse. We stopped at the S.S.Klondike, one of the largest sternwheelers to ply the Yukon River from 1929-55. We got in on a very interesting guided tour of the boat.
The town is surrounded by three mountain ranges. Initially it was only boats which could get into the area. After our tour of the boat we went over to an old log church which was the first Anglican mission in the town and now houses a museum. How about this caribou chasuble?  I bet it was warm!

1 comment:

  1. I had to look up the word "midden". What an increasingly useful word. Thanks :)