Just the number of RCMP that we saw in Whitehorse, a city of 23,276 people made me feel slightly on edge. I am not saying it was an inherently dangerous place – there was just a definite edge to the city. The First Nations vagrants -there was one that kept popping up, each time asking us for something else – trying to hustle you for cigarettes or cash as well as the many individuals we saw stumbling out of or in front of taverns; yet, at the same time, there were trendier restaurants, cafés, bookstores, and clothing shops. It was like a slice of the Pacific Northwest had cleaved off and somehow drifted to the Mesabi Iron Range – and specifically, Gilbert – of Minnesota.
We had breakfast at a hipster-esque breakfast place called Burnt Toast Café; we rolled out of town heading north toward the Dempster Highway. The entrance to the Dempster sits at around 64° N. latitude.
Our original intent, based on the distance our map, from the Dempster to Dawson City, was to skip Dawson entirely. The map had mislabeled the distance as 64 miles. We thought why should we travel a total of an extra two+ hours to get diesel. But, as we got closer to the Dempster and distances between places were shown on roadside signs – we realized that Dawson was much closer than the map had led us to believe. We could fill up with that precious distillate-fluid: diesel. We would definitely have enough fuel to get to Eagle Plains.
We stopped for fish and chips at Sour Dough Joes. I do have say that Sour Dough’s had fantastic fresh salmon fish and chips.
With full stomachs and a full tank & jerrycans of diesel, we rolled out of Dawson City.
Shortly down the Dempster Highway, there is a sign that is the equivalent of Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here. The sign basically warned of the total lack of modern services as well as the lack of prompt emergency medical services. We continued on; The sun was still high in the sky at 7:00 PM. Tombstone Territorial Park, with its snowcapped mountains, loomed in the distance.