A very windy
day today. I feel bad for the neighbor that hit the road this morning.
Hard to keep a camper on the road in this kind of wind. Got on the
internet today. Sent a couple of emails, updated a couple of websites
and downloaded a bunch of SPAM. We decided to have lunch here at
the camper for a change. Rita had thawed some meatballs from New
Years and they went nicely with the Italian buns we had purchased
the day before. Following lunch I worked on the small closet in
the bedroom. I moved the rod farther back and added two hooks for
the dirty cloths bag. We didn’t have any hooks with us so we had
to go to the hardware. This gave us a chance to check out the route
through the fuel stop we will be using in the morning. Rita worked
on de-hairing some shirts while I watched a prerecorded Tech TV
and washed the front window on the camper. Fynnigans had been fun
the day before so we went there again for supper. This came with
a couple of beers of course. The place is nice and the food is good
– now if they could just make the items they have on the menu be
like they describe them on the menu. Rita’s meal was great once
again and mine was ‘not as described’ once again. Still a good place
to go. Returning to the camper we grabbed a couple more beers while
watching IDOL and worked on catching up on the TV programs we had
brought with us on tape. Time to pack up the computer – we are moving
in the morning. Fort Nelson here we come!
Off we go. The
fuel stop went exactly as planned except for the line that developed
behind us at the pump as the camper drank up 140 liters of diesel.
We head north on the Alaskan Highway. Now the trip really starts.
The road to this point has been relatively good. Not to say that
the roads have become bad but the number of uphill challenges for
the camper followed by engine braking down the other side or is
it engine braking down to cross a small river and climbing back
up the other side. Anyway you look at it this is not freeway driving.
We saw an elk and a moose along the roadside during the trip – no
camera at hand of course. The last section of the road leading into
Fort Nelson has been rebuilt since the original road was built during
WW II. A section of about 40 miles had over 130 curves taken out
of it. Thanks go to those people! Fort Nelson is pretty much a straight
line city. Most of the town exists along the sides of the Alaskan
Highway. Our campground was at the west edge of town. Not much of
a place but the sites are bigger than the last place. After getting
setup we venture out to checkout the town. Straight down and straight
back – not a lot to see. A quick stop at a visitor center and a
liquor store before heading back to the camper. There is a museum
next door that we will have to visit tomorrow. We settle in for
the final installment of IDOL and a few beers before having a delicious
supper of leftovers We decide to turn in. It has not gotten dark
yet as it is not even 10PM yet but we got up early.
Woke up about
4AM this morning. It was so bright outside you could think it was
noon. I decided it was too early and rolled over to sleep. Managed
to sleep until about 7:30 before I got up. After breakfast and a
bit or morning TV we got ready and headed to Dan’s Pub for lunch.
The place is located at the far end of town but the town is not
that big. We both had the buffalo burger special. Good food and
the place seemed popular as it was quite busy. After Rita adjusted
the wash at the camper we headed north to see if there were any
fuel stops just out of town. We didn’t find any so we checked out
the Husky in town and decided on our route to get fuel in the morning.
The museum next to the campground was interesting. A large collection
of things that Marl Brown had collected over his seventy plus years.
The collection had no real theme except maybe the Alaska Highway
construction. We bought a video about the 1942 road building project
and took a few pictures. After getting Rita back to the camper to
continue the laundry I walked over to the ‘modem’ connection to
pickup the email. Unfortunately the connection had been removed
the day before and no one seemed to know why. It was suggested that
I try the library as a place to get on-line. The library filled
the bill and email was handled. I could not connect my laptop but
I could get to the email through web-mail by using their computers.
I picked up Rita and we headed to Back Roads to have supper. Not
a bad place. A small restaurant area, a bowling alley and a large
bar area. The food was good but I have to admit to be getting tired
of paying the high prices for beer in Canada. A bottle of Bud Light
goes for 4.75 at Back Roads and a case of 15 cans goes for $30 at
the liquor store. A couple of beers and some TV then off to bed.
Back on the road in the morning.
Pack and go.
Out of the campground and down to the Husky to get fuel. We are
on the road headed north by 7:30. The first 40 miles or so were
easy, then we got into the mountains. Very beautiful drive just
a lot of work. We saw bears, moose, deer and rock sheep along the
route. The most scenic drive we have had this trip. There was some
road construction along the way, bridge work and even a small section
of gravel. This 7km stretch was our first experience with chip seal
and man is it dusty! We followed a pilot car through the area so
there were no pickup trucks going by throwing stones at us. The
final stretch of road going into Watson Lake was back to easy driving.
We find the RV park and get registered. The park is basically a
gravel parking lot with hookups. A pull through row down the center
with a back in row down each side. They do have 10 channels of TV
so all is not lost. We get parked and go back to un-hook the Jeep.
Surprise! Stones are all over the hood of the Jeep. The left fog
lamp is cracked and the windshield has four star breaks in it. Just
7km of chip seal with no oncoming traffic and the Jeep has sustained
damage. Time to get creative. The campground owner happily gives
us a couple of panels of very used plywood and we begin the process
of making covers for the windshield and headlight areas. We plan
to go to the hardware store in the morning so we head to a local
restaurant for supper. What a dive! Several drunken locals and a
beer taper that took 5 minutes to fill a mug. Back to the camper
for some TV and off to bed. We will finish our woodwork project
in the morning before touring the local area.
Project day. We gathered the wood for the project and started to plan the implementation. After a bit we got to a part where we needed more things than we already had so I went off to the hardware. One Skill Saw, two rachet straps, some screws, pipe insulation, insulation tape etc all found their way to the register for checkout. A quick trip to the liquor store and back to the camper. We worked on the project and eventually got to the point where we only needed one more thing – a piece of PVC pipe. Back to the hardware of course. The completed project looks very crude but we think it will work. The Sign Post Forest was next on the list to see. People bring personalized signs and hang them on posts that are all over this park. Some people have put up plastic signs while others have used metal or wood. Some represent a single visit and others reflect visits over several years. Not all of the signs are in English as some of the visitors have come from other countries. We looked for a sign Rita had read about in some of her Alaska reading but could not find it. Way too many signs to see them all. Rain was threatening so we checked out our fuel stop for the next morning and went back to the camper to began the process of putting the new creation on to the Jeep. We no more than finished when it started raining. It rained off and on the rest of the night while we watched a bit of TV and had a beer.