Friday, July 19, 2013

Skagway and the Yukon Territory

First stop in Alaska...and a little sojourn into Canada!

We took a motorcoach on the Klondike Highway cling over 3,000 feet above sea level to the top of the White Pass.  En route, we stopped for a photo op at a lake.

Skagway was the starting point for those seeking their fortune in the Klondike Gold Rush. Prospectors would make their way to Skaway and then head for the Yukon Territory in Canada.  The journey to the gold mines was 500 miles and prospectors were required to carry a specific list of provisions as the Canadian government did not want to have to take care of them if they did not find their fortune.

Each man had to bring along the following before they were allowed to head to the Yukon...

200 pounds of bacon / 400 pounds of flour 
85 pounds assorted dried fruit 
50 pounds cornmeal / 35 pounds rice 
24 pounds coffee / 5 pounds tea 
100 pounds sugar / 25 pounds fish 
15 pounds soup vegetables 
50 pounds oatmeal / 25 cans butter
50 pounds dried onions / 100 pounds beans 
4 dozen tins condensed milk

50 pounds dried potatoes
15 pounds salt / 1 pound pepper 
8 pounds baking powder 

2 pounds baking soda / 1/2 pound mustard 
3/4 pound ginger / 36 pounds yeast cakes 
60 boxes of matches / 5 bars of soap

1 suit oil clothing / 
6 pairs wool mittens
3 pairs snag-proof rubber boots 
3 pairs heavy shoes / 1 dozen heavy socks 
3 suits heavy underwear / 2 hats
2 pairs Mackinaw trousers / 2 pairs overalls 
4 heavy woolen overshirts / 1 Mackinaw coat 
1 heavy rubber-lined coat 
suspenders, hankerchiefs, snow glasses 
2 pairs of heavy woolen blankets 
2 oil blankets / 4 towels 
buttons, thread, needles 
5 yards mosquito netting

1 large bucket / 1 set granite buckets / 2 axes, plus extra handle 
2 picks / handsaw / whipsaw / 1 shovel / pack strap 
6 files / drawing knife / brace and bits / jack plane / hammer 
3 chisels / butcher knife / 200 feet, 3/8- inch rope 
10 pounds pitch / 5 pounds oakum / 2 caulking irons / 15 pounds nails 
tent / canvas / whet stone / compass / goggles / quartz glass 
quicksilver / 2 frying pans / coffee and tea pot / 40 pounds of candles 
eating utensils: plate, cup, knife fork, spoon / pots and pans 
steel stove for 4 men / gold pan / gold scales

We stopped in Caribou Crossing Trading Post for lunch and saw some of the Iditarod puppies.  It was very interesting to see how the dogs would get all riled up and excited about the prospect of being chosen to lead a sled.  They were literally jumping on top of each other to get the attention of the guide to pick them.  As soon as the sled pulled out, the dogs became so docile. This pup is one that was not picked while we were there.

After lunch, we headed over to the town of Caribou Crossing...a typical Yukon town.  It had a charming little General Store with some very delicious ice cream, a train station and post office with a very nice Postmistress.  Housing in the town was very modest...almost rudimentary.

We saw this little fella along the road as we were making our way to the train station in Fraser, BC.

Back in Fraser, we boarded a train and took the Yukon Railroad Route.  Here are some pictures from the trip back down to Skagway.



Loved the sound of the clippity clop of the train as we made our way down the mountain.

Back in Skagway, we did a little exploring of the town before heading back to the ship. Cute little town but definitely set up for tourists.


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