I’m sure you’ve all been anxious to continue reading about my 12 day adventure. Perhaps many of us have a bit more spare time on our hands right now too thanks to COVID-19. In case you need something to do, here is some reading for you. Oh, and here’s Day 5 in case you need a refresh.
Day 6 is now Wednesday of the northern adventure. After a pretty amazing breakfast at a little place called the Alchemy Cafe we (more like I), looked into getting to Inuvik via air vs. driving the Dempster. Turns out Air North has ridiculously inexpensive flights daily from Dawson City to Inuvik.
I called Judi from Arctic Chalets and reviewed options once we got to Inuvik. She needed one more person for the Herschel Island trip or it would cost a bit more than 1000 bucks each (ouch). I confirmed with her that Air North had a pretty consistent record of arriving on time so we would fly in Friday and she’d pick us up and whisk us to the hangar next door for our Twin Otter flight to Herschel. Easy Peasy (or Plan FFS).
After all the travel organizing was done we did some exploring around Dawson City. It’s pretty easy to get around by foot and there are so many cool historic sites to see. Husband had heard that Dredge #4 was a pretty cool tour. I looked at tour times and noticed we had over an hour before the next tour so I said lets go to Dome Hill. We drove up and around to a pretty spectacular view point. Turns out there was a run up this mountain on Saturday. Sadly I would miss it because of Inuvik.
After the Dome, we drove and drove to Dredge #4 and partook of the tour. Our tour guide was Sue and she assured me the washroom facilities were the second best in Dawson City. They were pretty decent. I should note that Sue looked tough enough to have thrived during the goldrush. She was cool.
Here are some other stand-outs from this tour: a large pincher beetle landed on me at the start of the tour and it took every ounce of will power not to bust into Matrix style kung-fu trying to fling it off, there was a young child that had absolutely no interest in the tour and screamed his head off the entire time, there was a family with two little girls and the one young girl mistook me for her mom and grabbed my hand during the tour only to nearly break into Matrix style kung-fu when she realized I wasn’t her mom (that was awkward), and our tour guide Sue had a giant gold nugget in her pocket worth about $1500.
If you’re interested in details about Dredge #4, please Google it as there’s a lot of really interesting stuff about it. I will however note some highlights. Dredge# 4 was built in 1912 and was the last working dredge in Dawson City. It operated until 1959 (with some ups and downs along the way) and sadly paid it’s staff the same wages up until then as it did back in 1913 – about 5 bucks a day (to get to go deaf). It was 8 storeys high and pulled a lot of gold out of the ground over its 46 years, 9 tons actually. A dredge digs down about 60 feet and all the gravel and rocks go through some screens and get spit out the back. Hence all the caterpillar like gravel formations all over the area. Talk about hard on the environment. This dredge was abandoned and recently restored, minus a few cool parts that were stolen.
After the dredge tour we headed back to town and checked out the museum, but decided we didn’t have enough time so we’d save that for tomorrow.
Stay tuned for Day 7. It’s nearly ready, I promise.