2010 Yukon Solo Motorcycle Trip

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Day 5 — Ft. Nelson, BC to Watson Lake, YT

Thursday started out dry at 53F, then got rainy until after noon, and ended up at 71F in Watson Lake. From "Summit" west, the road reminded me of BC-31A between Kaslo and New Denver, only a bit bigger in scale. Much prettier than Wednesday, and I took more photos. Here are just a few...

When I first saw that "thing" floating over the road I thought it might be a UFO, then I realized it was just a hole in the clouds with a forested ridge peeking through. Later I saw a more spectacular one, but it was raining pretty hard so I skipped the photo.

Laird Hot Springs, where I spent a glorious 20 minutes soaking in crystal clear hot water after riding for hours in the rain. Fortunately, they rent towels ($3) at the toll booth on the way in.

There are two hot springs here, this photo is of the Alpha pool (107°). About another 1/2 mile up the raised wooden walkway is the Beta pool (126°) which is larger and deeper. I didn't visit it. Most people don't. The Alpha pool was hot enough for me!

Pretty berries near the hot springs. I expect Debb Kopp will know what they are.

I saw lots more animals: deer, elk, moose and buffalo, all multiple times. And a Dall sheep once. It's tough on a bike making growling noises to keep from spooking them while you pull off a glove and dig out the camera. This Wood Bison (aka Buffalo) is a different species than the Plains Buffalo, and the northern version males can reach 2,000lbs! I guess this one just wasn't afraid of anything.

Watson Lake's claim to fame   a "sign post forest" of 6,500, probably mostly stolen, signs from around North America and the world. I had no idea it was so big. This photo shows just a few percent of the signs on display.

I found signs for some odd places, like an old carved wooden one from Fields, OR (which is in extreme southeast Oregon and probably has a population of about 5 people these days).

I finally met some HD riders (J.D., Tim, Diane and Bill) who I'd been seeing since the parking lot in Banff where I met Axel. We had a beverage at the laundrimat — not a beer — that would have been illegal. But it tasted kinda like beer (nudge, nudge, wink, wink). They were staying in Whitehorse Friday night, and I silently planned to try to find them and drink some real beers...

Copyright © 2010, by H. Marc Lewis. All rights reserved.