As our time in Haines was running out, we went for a nice little hike to Battery Park in Chilkat State Park. The wet climate makes for a lush forest with moss and mushrooms and plenty of greenery.
The trail provides a nice view of the bay.
White Fang Movie Set
In 1989 Walt Disney Pictures built a small town along the Chilkat River to depict both Skagway, Alaska and Dawson City, Yukon. The movie was “White Fang,” and I haven’t seen it, so I surely can’t recommend it. (If you’ve seen it and like it tell me and I’ll try harder to catch it.) When they left the little “town” behind, it was moved to the County Fairgrounds in Haines. Now if I see the movie I’ll feel right at home.
We saw a lot of gorgeous clouds in Haines.
In 1903 a Gold Rush brought lots of miners and their wagons to the Kluane Lake area. A bridge was built across Canyon Creek, which lasted till spring floods took it out in the 1920’s. In 1942, during construction of the Alaska Highway, the bridge was dismantled and a new one built – in 18 days! It is said to be the most ambitious and important bridge built by the US Corps of Engineers. It was left in place when a newer bridge was built, and it preservation work was done on it in the late ’80’s. The sign warns that you may use it AT YOUR OWN RISK. Fun to walk on, but we weren’t tempted to try it with the motorhome!
Iskut, British Columbia
With a name like Iskut, we had to stop, right? Well, it was also about the right driving distance on our route. We didn’t bargain for what a beautiful site we would get… right on the lake!
Stewart, British Columbia
This is another cute little town that was enveloped in clouds when we visited. The drive down is narrow and curvy, with innumerable waterfalls on the steep mountain walls on each side. No chance of pictures!
It seems most folks drive to Stewart for the waterfall drive, and the chance of driving a few miles further, crossing the border (Again!) and seeing Hyder. Or more specifically, the bears fishing at Fish Creek, just outside of Hyder.
Hyder itself is a VERY small community, with a lot of closed up buildings.
This little storehouse was Alaska’s first masonry building, erected in 1896 by the US Corps of Engineers. Engraved on the corner is “U.S. PROPERTY Do Not Injure.”
The storehouse is right on the Canada / U. S. Border. As is this little obelisk.
Among the ghost town like buildings, is this cute establishment – alive and well. Caroline Stewart is the proprietor. I’m not sure if she’s related to the Stewarts from the neighboring town. When I noticed a uniquely designed Dulcimer on the wall, I pointed it out to Cherryl. Caroline took it down, gave us a history of it, and played it a bit. She told us how a mighty tree fell, and her husband decided it would make nice musical instruments, so he went to a lot of work to salvage the tree. They regularly supplied wood to Martin to build guitars, but decided to keep this tree for dulcimer makers. When playing for us, she explained it’s not hard… it’s just like “Flick’n Boogers!” You need to watch her explain it…
Hyder has a nice little boardwalk along Fish Creek, where you can watch Grizzly Bears hunt for Salmon. I’ve got so many bear pictures I almost couldn’t stand to add any more, but this one guy was really fun… he would run and jump like a little kid.
A bit of a drive past Fish Creek is Salmon Glacier. The drive is spectacular enough, but the glacier view at the top is amazing.
Even the Marmots enjoyed the view.
Salmon Glacier is the big one below; I liked the little hyphenated glacier feeding into it.
The glacier splits at this point – on our left it continues on a long ways, on our right it falls into a jumbled mass.
On the many miles of dirt roads, just before we got to the top, we got a rock in our brake system. It made a horrible scratching/screeching sound! Once before when we had that happen, backing and turning threw it out. Not this time. I pulled the wheel, and got the rock out pretty easily. All part of the Adventure!
This helicopter proved we weren’t the only ones enjoying this majestic view!