Dawson Creek to Fort Nelson – 453kms
As I said in yesterday’s blog, we’d probably be packing the tent this morning in the rain and that’s exactly how the day started. You can’t really see it in the pictures, but the rain was was light but steady right up until we hopped on the bikes and pulled out.
It rained pretty much all night with a few breaks and both Louise and I slept on and off. Louise I think had a bit better sleep than I did because she had earplugs in!
We had three things on the agenda for the morning before heading out on the highway: breakfast, fuel, and the Mile 0 monument. Last night I had a look on the internet for the best breakfast place in Dawson Creek and more than a few sites agreed that Le’s Family Restaurant was the best. So we went there as soon we had everything packed.
Le’s is a pretty small place, really just an a-frame shed tied into the end of a motel, but the food was good. However the server sure had better things to do than work the tables – zero personality.
Next up was gas, just some random PetroCanada, then on to downtown Dawson Creek for a couple of pictures at Mile 0!
The curse is officially lifted!
Just outside of Dawson Creek, there’s stretch of Old Alaska Highway that runs for about 10k and goes over the old Kiskatinaw Bridge – for more information on the Kiskatinaw, check out this webpage: Tourism Dawson Creek – Kiskatinaw Bridge. I’ve had this bridge on the “list of things to see in the North” for sometime now and I talked Louise into taking the detour to see it.
It’s a timber bridge with wood planks for the deck, which in the rain, was a bit slippy.
By this time the rain had started up and got steadier and heavier as we left Dawson Creek. Thankfully it never got to the downpour stage, but it was wet all the same. It wasn’t so bad until we got to areas of construction, where it turned into a dirty sandy slime that coated the bikes, our gear, our suits and our helmets. By the time we reached Wonowon (located at mile 101, get it?), we had to pull over and clean up the helmets so we could see again.
Eventually the rain let up once we reached Buckinghorse River Lodge, about halfway between Dawson Creek and Fort Nelson. The picture below shows the delivery end of the gas station …
… and this picture shows the business end.
There are three containers on skids; one not really in the picture but on the left of the picture above is diesel fuel; the one that Louise is stepping out of with the credit card machine and activation machinery; and the third which is labeled AFD, which is the gas. The process is you go into the “booth”, insert your credit card, which activates the pump for the gas. then you go out to the corner of the other container, turn on the pump and fill your tank(s), making sure to shut-off the pump when you’re done. Then you go back to the booth to get a receipt.
The Buckinghorse River Lodge Cafe had a lunch special – BLT sandwich and Bean & Bacon soup with endless coffee or tea, all for $9.95! Possibly the best meal deal so far!
The skies finally started to clear and it warmed up over the course of the last 160kms to Fort Nelson, all the way to 21 deg! We were going to camp again, but we’d used up a lot of batteries during the previous night, and we both wanted a shower so we opted for a super-cheap motel – the Shannon Motel. Not great, but not too bad.
Tomorrow is breakfast at the Fort Nelson Hotel, cinnamon buns at Toad River, and the Liard Hot Springs, before calling it a day at Watson Lake in the Yukon!