Monday, January 23, 2012

Back to the Dempster 2011 – Part 12a

It has taken me a while to get to this next entry…partly because I had over a hundred pictures to edit and go through, but mainly because in real time, Yukon weather seems to have come to my neck of the woods and we’ve been dealing with lots of snow and sub zero temperatures…the system now seems to be moving back up north where it belongs so I’m able to start getting caught up…so here goes…

The Tundra

We would get up to sunshine so pulled out of Engineer Creek Campground and headed north…this is just a general scene of the terrain….little trees, most only a few feet high

White-tailed Ptarmigan

We did come across a White-tailed Ptarmigan on the road…the only one we saw and the best picture we managed.

Blackstone River and Ogilvie Mountains

another scene…with Ogilvie Mountains and the Blackstone River….

In the Ogilvies

another look at some of the mountain features…

Ogilvie Ridge

climbed up onto Ogilvie Ridge where we stopped…you can see the highway ahead….

Ogilvie Ridge

View of the back side of the ridge…

On top of the world

You are literally ‘on top of the world’ at this spot…

The other side - Blackstone River down there

Here we are looking back the way we’ve come – that is the Blackstone River down there…

looking back

It was Shantz who spotted this Fox up on the hillside…

Arctic Fox

Ernie actually captured the best picture of it because he was closer and madly trying to catch my attention…by the time he did, the fox had realized we were there and was moving off…

looking ahead

and looking ahead although the highway doesn’t go over this way at all ….

Fall Colours

the fall colours were starting to show up here…

Sandhill Cranes

we hadn’t realized it while we were parked, but as soon as we pulled onto the highway a big flock of Sandhill Cranes started taking off ….heading south.

Bear on the hillside

now headed to Eagle Plains…spotted this bear up on the hillside…

Muddy road ahead

but we were paying too much attention to the road at this point because it was mud…very deep mud…the truck got put in 4 wheel drive and still it slipped and slide up the hill…

Getting fuel at Eagle Plains

and finally Eagle Plains was reached.  This is it.  We are at the fuel pump…the motel and restaurant are in the distance (we had lunch in the restaurant with another couple we had first met up with back at Boya Lake)…there is also an RV park just past the Motel/restaurant.  This is the first ‘civilization’ you come to and the last you’ll find until you reach Fort McPherson in the N.W.T.  We learned that an extremely heavy rainfall during the night was the reason for the condition of the highway.

Here we are - again...

Next stop – the Arctic Circle – our second time in this location (the friends we’d had lunch with took the picture – we took theirs – their 14th time here!!!)

Fall on the Tundra

There you have it – the tundra at the Arctic Circle on the Dempster Highway on August 25, 2011.

Bear Berry at the Arctic Circle

some detail – the red is Bear Berry…

Blue Berries and Crow Berries at the Arctic Circle

here are some Blue Berries and Crowberries..

Fall Colour up close

more Bear Berry…

proof anyone can drive the dempster

and I’m putting this in for everyone who thinks driving the Dempster just isn’t possible without some rugged equipment.  This set up was coming back from having been in Inuvik.  Obviously they are from Switzerland and they had had the set up shipped over to the east coast of the states, had travelled across Canada, visiting all the north…were heading next to do the west coast of North America and then headed for South American.  They said the only time they encountered problems was if it was really muddy because the mini was so low to the ground.

And I’m going to break off here because we’ll be going a bit further down the road and staying in a spot we stayed in before…and there are just too many pictures to put them all in this one posting….

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