Dawson City, Yukon Territory
We started the day with a walk around town with a Park Ranger. We were soon joined by a young lady dressed in 1900’s style. The walk was called Dawson then and now. The young lady was then, and the ranger was now. She played various parts as we went along, and was very good. It was a well spent hour and a half. We visited the old bank, the mortuary, the old post office, and a saloon. Inside the saloon she was talking about what the different gold miners did with their money. She asked me a question, which I didn't hear, so I just kept smiling. Cindy spoke up, “The answer is NO”. Everyone laughed and they probably remember that part of the walk over all the rest. I found out later the question was “would you spend your gold on ladies of the night”? We really did enjoy the walk and lots of good information was given.
|Post Office customer.|
Bar Maid when she asked me "The Question". I swear I didn't hear her.
Cindy and I then walked up to Jack London’s cabin or the half of it here in Dawson. The other half is in Oakland, California. It is there because Oakland financed the trip to find the cabin. It was located about 75 miles upstream from Dawson. Someone found a cabin in the woods with his name written on the wall. They cut his name out of the wall and sent it to 2 hand writing experts, who said it was his signature. Prior to finding the cabin in the woods, no one knew where he had stayed for sure. The other half of the cabin was moved to Dawson. The Park service has a museum by the cabin, and we got a very good talk on his life. He was in the Yukon for only one winter. We found out he died at age 40. He got scurvy while he was in the Yukon, and lost all his teeth. He also had kidney failure, and was on morphine for the pain. They feel he may have accidentally overdosed on morphine.
We found some old buildings that had fallen victim to thawing perma-frost. Earlier I had asked the ranger why some of the buildings were on blocks. He told me that all the buildings were on blocks, you just couldn't see some of them. He said that if they were not put on blocks, the building would melt the perma-frost, making mud which would then settle the buildings and cause lots of damage.
We also found out that the reason for gravel roads and board walks is because of the perma-frost. From walking around town, we found many old interesting buildings. From the history of the town, it went through many boom and bust periods depending on the price of gold. The big mining company moved out in 1960, and the town died for a while. The town now seems to be a thriving tourist destination, with about 2000 year round residents.
|Where we bought the gold pan.|
|Victim of Perma-frost.|
|A rather elegant looking house.|
After lunch we went to claim #6, which is a place where you can pan for gold. On the way there we pass a place called Claim #33. They give panning demonstration, and guarantee you will find gold. They charge $15.00 for this, and we felt that they probably salt the dirt so they can guarantee the gold. We passed by dredge #4, which is a very large gold mining machine. We also came to what the sign said was the place where the original gold strike was found. We tried panning there, but didn't find any gold. We then drove up to the free gold claim, and tried our hand at panning for gold there. I didn't find any, but Cindy found, what might be several small flakes of gold. While she was panning, it started to rain quite hard, but she had gold fever so bad that she didn't want to quit. LOL
|An old miners' house on the way to the gold claims.|
|It Was raining, but she didn't want to quit.|
We came back to town to town, I wanted to look in the grocery store to see prices, and guess what? The prices for most things are much worse here than anywhere we have been so far. The only exception we found was the meat prices seemed to be about the same as at home.
|Looks like Costco!|
Thanks for visiting.