Go To See Alaska
Part 3 - Skagway To Yukon
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雄山、異水、秀林中的Tagish 湖 是 Yukon 大河的源頭,而從這裡往西邊望去,會讓你
感嘆Yukon 大河奔流過 阿拉斯加 到 白令海 不復回的雄渾。

Tagish Lake along our tour route, Klondike Highway (Highway 2), in Yukon Territory in Northwest Canada. It is
the headwater of the great Yukon River which is the longest river in Alaska, USA and in Yukon Territory in
Northwest Canada. This 2,300-mile river starts here in Yukon, then flows through Alaska and empties into
Bering Sea.  Yukon means "Great River".

Map: Click here to see Google Map showing location of Tagish Lake
山體陡峭,雄峻挺拔, 冰雪覆蓋,終年雲蒸霞蔚, 洪荒神秘的境界。

Mountains along our 8-hour Excursion Tour from coastal town of Skagway in Alaska, USA through British
Columbia in Canada into Yukon Territory in northwest Canada. The Sapphire Princess Cruise ship docked at
Skagway harbor for 13 hours on August 12, 2009 so that we can take this 8-hour Yukon Expedition & White
Pass Scenic Railway into Yukon. The outgoing trip in the morning was on a motor coach along Klondike
Highway and the return trip in the afternoon was on a train along the historic narrow-gauge White Pass &
Yukon Route Railway. This tour route traces steps of gold rush stampeders along the Trail of ‘98 (i.e., 1898)
from coastal town of Skagway in Alaska, USA through British Columbia into Yukon towards Klondike gold
fields. The combination of motor coach and railway shows tourists the beauty of this area from two different

Maps of this 8-hour Excursion Tour route can be seen at the following websites:




One can click to grab this map and drag it up and down to see the entire route.


翠綠高雅 碧波蕩漾 的翡翠湖。

Emerald Lake along the Klondike Highway about 15 Km north of Carcross in Yukon. The blue green color is
caused by sunlight reflecting off the white layer of "Marl" - Calcium Carbonate clay - which is on the bottom of
the lake.

Map: Click here to see Google Map showing location of Emerald Lake (Blue Lake) near Spirit Lake
話 當 年。

This is the legendary grueling  White Pass Trail of '98 (of gold rush stampeders in 1898) worn into the rocks, a
permanent tribute to the thousands of souls who passed this way in search of fortune. The Alaska gold rush
happened only 31 years after Russia sold Alaska to USA for 1.9¢ per acre on October 18, 1867.
Lake Bennett at Carcross in Yukon. During the Klondike Gold Rush, Lake Bennett was where the gold-seekers
who had crossed the Coastal Mountains from Skagway or Dyea, carrying their goods over the Chilkoot Trail or
the White Pass Summit, then purchased or built rafts or boats here to float down the Yukon River to reach the
gold fields at Dawson City, Yukon, Canada. A large tent city sprang up on the shores of Lake Bennett,
numbering in the thousands and offering all the services of a major city. In late May 1898, the North West
Mounted Police counted 778 boats under construction at Lindeman Lake, 850 in Bennett and the surrounding
area, and another 198 at Caribou Crossing (now Carcross) and Tagish Lake to help transport thousands of
goldfield-bound travellers. It was further estimated that another 1,200 boats were built in these areas over the
next few weeks.

The Klondike Gold Rush, sometimes referred to as the Yukon Gold Rush or Alaska Gold Rush, was a frenzy of
gold rush immigration to and for gold prospecting, along the Klondike River near Dawson City, Yukon, Canada
after gold was discovered there in the late 19th century.
This is the marker of the Dead Horse Gulch as viewed from the train.
A view of the Dead Horse Gulch along the railroad. It is a deep ravine where more than 3,000 horses died and
were pushed down into this Gulch in 1898. During the gold rush period in 1898, tens of thousands of
stampeders made their way to the Yukon River at Whitehorse for the final leg of their journey to Dawson City.
Stampeders had to carry a year's supply of goods — about a ton, more than half of it food — along this Trail
of 98 over the passes to be allowed to enter Canada. Those gold rush stampeders worked their horses on
this trail so hard, essentially worked those horses to death.

Our motor coach started at sea level at Skagway harbor and climbed up to the White Pass Summit at an
elevation of 2,865 feet along the Klondike Highway. It was very foggy here in the morning.

Map: Click here to see Google Map showing White Pass Summit at the boarder of Alaska, USA and British
Columbia, Canada

The air humidity here at White Pass Summit in the morning was practically 100% and the roadside grass and
flowers had lots of dew.
More mountains along our tour route.

Pristine blue glacial lakes around every corner, decorated by the odd islet and presenting really gorgeous
views.  We were essentially treated to a running video of spectacular scenery of majestic mountains and
beautiful lakes. It is a photographer's dream trip.
追逐嬉戲, 有時高飛,有時低掠。

We enjoyed a tasty chicken barbecue lunch at Caribou Crossing Trading Post which is only a short distance
north of Carcross. We also visited the Wildlife Gallery and saw interesting exhibits of wildlife native to the
region. More information about Caribou Crossing Trading Post is available at the following website:


Several ravens were flying around in that area. Two ravens were very playful and were doing fantastic
synchronized twin flight to play with each other. I took a movie clip of these two playful ravens in action as
shown at the following YouTube website:


Map: Click here to see Google Map showing location of Caribou Crossing Trading Post

The train as viewed from our motor coach on Klondike Highway in the morning. The train track and the Klondike
Highway are on opposite sides of the Dead Horse Gulch.
We enjoyed breathtaking panorama of mountains, glaciers, lakes, gorges, waterfalls, rivers, tunnels, trestles,
cliff-hanging turns and historic sites.  In the afternoon, our train was descending from White Pass Summit down
towards Skagway ahead.

Coastal misty mountains near Skagway
The Pullen Creek is next to the Skagway train station at the southern end of downtown Skagway. When we
finished the 8-hour tour and got off the train at the Skagway train station, many tourists were watching salmon
run in this Pullen Creek as shown in these three photos.

The following map shows the Pullen Creek at southern part of downtown Skagway near harbor.

Map: Click here to see Google Map showing map of downtown Skagway
I took two movie clips of the action of many big salmon in Pullen Creek as shown at the following two YouTube



Pullen Creek and the train station are only about 10-minute walking distance from Skagway harbor where
Sapphire Princess Cruise ship was docked. So, after watching the big salmon run in Pullen Creek, many
tourists just walked leisurely back to Sapphire Princess even though the tour motor coach was waiting for us at
the train station to take us back to Sapphire Princess.

The 8-hour tour into Yukon that I took is just one of several Excursion Tours available at Skagway. Other
friends who took other excursion tours at Skagway were also very happy with their choices. For example, one
of the options is to tour the Valley of Eagles where one can see many bald eagles and other wildlife in action.
The Chilkat Valley is year-round home for between 200 and 400 eagles. Over 3,000 bald eagles have been
counted within the preserve during the Fall Congregation.

More information on these Excursion Tours into Yukon is available at the following website:


A colorful regional map of these Excursion Tours can be seen at:

Part 4 of 11 of my Alaska tour is about College Fjord with many impressive glaciers. It is at my Travelogue web
pages at:

The railroad and the bridge crossing Lake Bennett into the village of Carcross. The original name for Carcross
village was Caribou Crossing. However, there were five different villages with the same name of Caribou
Crossing causing a lot of confusion in postal delivery service. Those five villages were forced to change their
names. So, this village becomes Carcross, a quaint historic town at the edge of Lake Bennett, which has a
gold rush general store and other visitor amenities, and an unusual patch of desert. Carcross was the site of
the driving of the golden spike completing the railroad on July 29, 1900.

Map: Click here to see Google Map showing locations of Lake Bennett and Carcross

The sub-arctic alpine tundra of moose flat with many lakes - a virtual “moonscape” like valley of rocks in the
Tormented Valley in British Columbia. It is so named because of its harsh volcanic rocky desolate terrain
carved by retreating ancient glaciers. At 3292 feet of elevation, this lunar-looking area boasts 300 year old
stunted juniper and dwarfed spruces that are only 2 or 3 foot tall.
After lunch, our motor coach was crossing railway track here at Fraser Train Station in British Columbia where
we changed from motor coach to the train for our return trip in the afternoon.

Map: Click here to see Google Map showing location of Fraser
Another photo of Dead Horse Gulch taken from inside the train through the window with some reflections inside
the train.

Additional information on Alaska Gold Rush can be seen on the following YouTube website with music "North to
Alaska" and more pictures:


Many salmon swimming up stream on Pullen Creek.
The sequence of our 2-week Tour of Alaska is the Following:

One-week Alaska Cruise:

Vancouver in Canada, the starting point of 1-week Alaska Cruise -------->  Ketchikan in Alaska (Misty Fjords
National Monument) -------->  Juneau (Mendenhall Glacier, Macaulay Salmon Hatchery, Gold Creek Salmon
Bake)  --------->  Skagway (8-hour Excursion Land Tour into Yukon Territory in northwest Canada) -------->  
Glacier Bay National Park -------->  College Fjords -------->  Whittier, the end point of our Alaska Cruise.

One-week driving tour of Alaska starts from Whittier as follows:

Whittier -------->  Denali National Park -------->  Fairbanks  (Creamer's Field Migratory Waterfowl Refuge,
Georgeson Botanical Garden, Large Animal Research Station of the University of Alaska) --------->  Town of
North Pole -------->  Scenic Richardson Highway going south -------->  Boundary of Wrangell-St Elias National
Park --------->  Scenic Glen Highway going west --------->  Scenic Seward Highway going south -------->
Seward, (Kenai Fjords National Park, Exit Glacier) -------->  Seward Highway going north to Tern Lake, then
Sterling Highway going west to Kenai, then south --------->  Homer -------->  Sterling Highway going north to
Kenai, then east, to Tern Lake, then Seward Highway going north --------->  Alaska Wildlife Conservation
Center -------->  Anchorage, the end point of our driving tour of Alaska
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