June 15-16, 2009 - Dawson City, YK

June 15

We drove up Bonanza Creek South of Dawson City and saw the Discovery Mine – where gold was first discovered in the Klondike.

We then toured Dredge No. 4 – a Canada national historic site. It is the largest wooden hulled, bucket line dredge in North America. It ceased operating in 1960 when it sunk into the silt and mud of Bonanza Creek. In the early 1990’s Parks Canada recovered it and began restoring it.

We toured the Robert Service cabin. Robert Service was a renowned poet and Canada’s “bard of the Yukon”. His most famous poems are “The Shooting of Dan McGrew” and “The Cremation of Sam McGee”. Parks Canada held a talk about him and a reading of some of his poetry. He was quite a colorful character and we enjoyed the talk very much.

Down the road a couple of blocks was Jack London’s cabin and interpretative center. Jack London wrote Call of the Wild, White Fang and many other stories. An interpreter told us about his life and his journey to the Klondike during the gold rush days. They had a pictorial display about how his cabin was found, recovered and moved to Dawson City from its original site.

We attended a really good bluegrass concert tonight with a band from the southern US – Grasstowne. The lead-in was Harmonica George and Bonnie, a local couple from across the river. They each played the guitar and sang original songs and he played the harmonica – they were very entertaining. Grasstowne was a very high energy bluegrass band and were very good – we enjoyed the concert very much.

June 16

We woke this morning to a sunny and blue, cloudless sky – it is nice to finally have a day without rain. Today was a very relaxed day - we spent a couple of hours in the morning going through The Dawson City Museum. The museum had very nice displays about life in this area and Rex enjoyed looking in the train barn where they had some steam locomotives. We saw a short film made in the 1950’s about Dawson City and another short film about living in -40 degree weather – brrrr… winters in Arizona are much nicer. They did a demonstration on how to user a rocker box to separate the gold from the gravel. It was a very interesting and fun morning.

After lunch we took the dogs for a long walk along the Yukon River. We watched the ferry shuttle vehicles across the river. We will be taking this ferry when we leave tomorrow morning – it should be an interesting ride.

We went to Diamond Tooth Gerties tonight and watched the can can show. The singing and dancing was very good but it was not as fun as the Fantic Follies in Whitehorse.


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