Day 10 on the Alaska Highway

Haines to Cottonwood001We spent part of this day on a hunt for a mouse. Yes, we seem to have another mouse. Yikes! We found a nest and have put out “humane” traps. And we are heading out on day 10 on the Alaska Highway.

Haines to Cottonwood003Haines to Cottonwood010Day 10 driving recap:

Road Name (s): Yukon Highway 1

Road Type: 2-lane

Road Conditions: Starts out pretty smooth with some dips, bumps and patches.  Overall not bad.

Miles Today: 84

Miles driven from Canadian border: 1838

Miles on the Alaska Highway: 1034

Driving Time: 2:15

Haines to Cottonwood015The above includes an extra 30 miles from our campground back to Haines Junction. The Haines Highway is an excellent road. Back on the Alaska Highway there are more views of the spectacular Kluane Range. Haines to Cottonwood004

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Haines to Cottonwood008This day we had our first grizzly sighting. Hector has perfect eyesight and is able to spot wildlife from pretty far, a great skill for a photographer. The bear was eating dandelions by the side of the road, he was VERY beautiful.Haines to Cottonwood009Haines to Cottonwood006Haines to Cottonwood011Haines to Cottonwood013Haines to Cottonwood007

Haines to Cottonwood016Haines to Cottonwood018Haines to Cottonwood019On route, we stopped at Kluane National Park’s Tachal Dal Visitor Center. Tachal Dal is the First Nations name for Sheep Mountain which towers over the visitor center. It is a remote and gorgeous location. Starting in early May, Dall sheep have their lambs on the Southern slope of the mountain. They remain here until early June, when they climb to higher altitudes.

But our arrival in this area was just a tad late, we only caught a glimpse of two sheep high on the mountain in the ranger’s scope, but they were too far for photography.

Haines to Cottonwood017This is also where we got our first views of Kluane Lake, the largest lake in the Yukon.  The highway follows along the shore of Kluane Lake for many miles.Haines to Cottonwood020

Haines to Cottonwood042Cottonwood R.V. Park was the first of three potential R.V. Parks that we considered for our overnight stay. Although it was still kind of early when we arrived there, when we saw its beautiful setting we could not resist staying there. Haines to Cottonwood040

Haines to Cottonwood033Even though it is a private campground it looks much like a government campground with lots of natural plants and trees throughout. Normally CA$35 for electric only, but when we told the proprietress that we would not need the sani-dump nor a water fill, she gave us a CA$25 rate.Haines to Cottonwood032

Tip of the day:  Always mention if you only need a night’s stay with no hookups and no use of the sani-dump nor water. We have gotten lower rates than those published by doing this.Haines to Cottonwood038When we arrived at the campground, Hector went for a bike ride while I went to the office to access their WiFi. Unfortunately, WiFI was extremely slow there and I was only able to post two things on social media.Haines to Cottonwood026

Haines to Cottonwood025Hector had a more interesting experience on his bike ride, which was mostly on the Alaska Highway. He rode right by a young grizzly bear just off the road but was able to pass him before the bear spotted him. Shortly thereafter several cars stopped to look at the bear so Hector could hide behind them to photograph the bear.

Haines to Cottonwood030But he does not normally carry his long lens on the bike so he did not get any super closeups.  Still, it was a bit close for comfort.  At one point he asked a truck to drive past the bear slowly so he could use the truck as a screen to pedal by.  He was pretty excited when he arrived back at the campground.

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The long day allowed us to enjoy a nice long time by a campfire overlooking Kluane Lake and mountains towering above it. A very relaxing evening with an awesome view.

~ BrendaHaines to Cottonwood037






14 thoughts on “Day 10 on the Alaska Highway

  1. Thank you for sharing your Alaskan adventure. My husband and I are enjoying your detailed descriptions and gorgeous photography. We look forward to each installment.

  2. Wow, close call on a bike with a grizzly in the area. Glad that Hector was able to get some photos. That first grizzly spotting was spectacular…what a beauty!

    • Yes, it was. He doesn’t freak out easily, but I think he had a moment there. He later found out that the grizzly is a three year old that the campground host has to chase away sometimes. The first grizzly was a bigger boy, he was beautiful.

  3. I can’t imagine a grizzly encounter while out bicycle riding. Awhile back I encountered a brahma bull unfenced along a route I bike ride here in the Big Bend country, and my heart was in my throat as I “quietly” rode past him. I can’t possibly imagine how it must have felt had that been a grizzly. What are you going to do…hit him with a tire pump?
    Love your adventure…keep the posts coming!

    • I know, right after he left I thought he should have taken the bear spray with him, I’m not letting him go out there without it again. Thanks for coming along with us!

  4. “Pretty excited” = adrenaline hyped and pretty lucky!!!!! OMG!!!! Keep safe and well. Wishing you both better eyesight than all critters, including mice… :0 xo

    • Yes, and so grateful! We are not stressing too much on the mouse, just doing what we can to get rid of him. A pretty insignificant problem in the scheme of things.

  5. How thrilling — and terrifying!! — to have such a close encounter with a grizzly. Cannot imagine biking past a grizzly….thanks for taking photos for us. 🙂

  6. Smart to use another vehicle as a screen. Even though we spent a week on Katmai Peninsula sitting with bears when they were fishing for salmon, I wouldn’t want to startle one while riding a bike. That first view of Kluane Lake is gorgeous. Love those colors.

    • Never a good idea to surprise a bear – he will be carrying bear spray from now on! Kluane Lake was beautiful.

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