Yukon Territory

Mayo to Dawson City YT on the Klondike Highway

29 June 2008

This morning we backtracked on the Silver Trail, out to Stewart Crossing to continue our
journey towards Dawson City.  The scenery along this section of the Klondike Hwy is
pleasant enough, but not spectacular.  The road was in good condition.

Klondike Highway between Stewart Crossing and Dawson City, Yukon
Between Stewart Crossing and Dawson City

Klondike River south of Dawson City, Yukon
Klondike River south of Dawson City and the Dempster Highway junction

Northbound on the Klondike Highway approaching its junction with the Dempster Highway.

North Klondike Highway junction with Dempster Highway, Yukon

The Klondike River Yukon Government campground is a few miles south of Dawson
City.  As with all territorial campgrounds, there are no services; however the
campsites are private and roomy.   The mosquitoes were also plentiful this year!

Campsite at Klondike River Campground near Dawson City, Yukon
Klondike River Yukon Gov't campground

After settling in at the campground and unhooking the fifth wheel, we continued towards Dawson City to once again look around and tour the area.

A drive up to the "Dome" is a must.  We decided to start our sightseeing there.  In previous years, we have seen black bears on our drive up the hill.  No wildlife this year though.  I also noticed there were more residences along the road on the way up.

Yukon River from Dome Mountain near Dawson City
Looking north from Dome Summit, along the Yukon River

Dawson City from Dome Mountain, Yukon
Looking southwest from Dome Summit, with a view of Dawson City, the Yukon River and the start of the Top of the World Highway across the river.

In Dawson City, the streets were quiet, which was surprising.  This time of year it is usually busier.  We also noticed the heritage sites were not as well-maintained as a decade ago, which was disappointing!

Robert Service Cabin in Dawson City, Yukon
Robert Service's cabin

Jack London Cabin in Dawson City, Yukon
Jack London's cabin

Interior of Jack London's cabin in Dawson City, Yukon
Interior of Jack London's cabin

The Red Feather Saloon had been restored since my 1986 visit.

Red Feather Saloon in Dawson City, Yukon
Red Feather Saloon - September 1986

Red Feather Saloon in Dawson City, Yukon
Red Feather Saloon - June 2008

Below, the 3rd Avenue Complex, dating from 1901, illustrates what can happen when heated buildings are placed on frozen ground; the frost melts, mixing water with soil to form a muck into which the footings settle at different rates.

3rd Avenue Complex in Dawson City, Yukon
3rd Avenue Complex, built in 1901 - Parks Canada site

It was disappointing that the Gaslight Follies were no longer performing at the Palace Grand. 

Palace Grand Theatre, Dawson City, Yukon
Palace Grand Theatre, built in 1899 - Parks Canada site

Years ago, it was difficult to get tickets for the show and we thoroughly enjoyed the show we saw while sitting in our little private box on the second floor.  It was a good time, and it was easy to imagine the "good old days" when the theatre would have been the going thing and busy with dance hall girls and miners hoping to trade some gold for a dance!

Palace Grand Theatre, Dawson City, Yukon
Interior of the Palace Grand Theatre in 2008

Across from the Theatre is the restored Post Office, which is open for business during the summer months.

Post Office in Dawson City, Yukon
Historic Post Office, open for mail services during the summer - Parks Canada site

Westminster Hotel in Dawson City, Yukon
Westminster Hotel, established 1898

Midnight Sun Hotel in Dawson City, Yukon
Midnight Sun Hotel, established in 1972

Downtown Hotel in Dawson City, Yukon
Downtown Hotel, opened in 1982

Lowe's Mortuary, Dawson City, Yukon
Lowe's Mortuary, no longer open so hopefully no one needs those services - Parks Canada site

Klondike Thawing Machine building in Dawson City, Yukon
Klondike Thawing Machine Company building, constructed in 1899 - Parks Canada site

Klondike Motors in Dawson City, Yukon
Klondike Motors - closed

S.S. Keno Paddlewheeler in Dawson City, Yukon
S.S. Keno paddle wheeler, one of only two left in the Yukon
Built specifically to move lead & silver ore from Mayo to the outside - Parks Canada site

The St. Andrew's Church and Manse was built in 1901, boasting a pipe organ and carved oak pews that accommodated 600 people. 

St Andrews Church in Dawson City, Yukon
St. Andrew's Church and Manse, 1901

Strait's Auction House in Dawson City, Yukon (Guns and Ammunition Shop)
Strait's Auction House, constructed in 1901, also known as the Guns and Ammunition Shop

Strait's Auction House in Dawson City, Yukon
Strait's Auction House in 1986

The Binet Block, below, was built in 1898.  Initially it was used for government
offices and subsequently it was used as a hotel under a variety of names.

The Yukon Hotel in Dawson City, Yukon
The Yukon Hotel

One of two dozen dredges that worked this area, Dredge No. 4 rests on Claim 17 Below Discovery on Bonanza Creek near the spot where it ceased operations in 1959. Dredge No. 4 is the largest wooden hull, bucket line dredge in North America. 

To see the dredge, you must drive a gravel road south of Dawson.  The drive is interesting as miners continue to work in the surrounding hills.  During the summer, there are tours of the dredge and it is interesting to see the workings inside!

Dredge No. 4 - National Historic Site of Canada - Dawson City, Yukon
Dredge No. 4 - National Historic Site of Canada

Dredge No. 4 - National Historic Site of Canada - Dawson City, Yukon
Dredge No. 4 - historical site   More pictures of the dredge on my Dawson City page.

On previous visits we saw other sites, including the paddlewheel graveyard on the west side of the Yukon River and Bear Creek historical site (which was closed when we tried to visit this year). 

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