#5 – Tombstone Park and Dempster Highway

After a great time in Dawson City. we headed north for Tombstone Park, 70kms up the Dempster Highway. The Dempster Highway is well known for blowing tires, huge pot holes and long distances between fuel stops. It traverses the arctic for over 700kms through the Northwest Territories to the Arctic Ocean.

We wanted to explore it a bit, but not go all the way. Plus, the Northwest Territories were closed to non residents. We decided to just go to Tombstone Park, a beautiful valley 70kms north of Dawson City.

Our Camper all setup for the sun!

We stayed for four nights as the weather was phenomenal and our site was fantastic. We were right beside the early North Klondike River, when it was still more of a creek. Every day was sunny and hot, above 30 degrees Celsius. We loved every moment there.

A panorama of the valley we stayed in.

We did lots of hiking from this camp spot. Just above us was the Goldensides Trail, and it provided amazing views.

Staying cool beside the North Klondike River.

We saw lots of wildlife during our stay in Tombstone. We saw a cow Moose just 400meters from our campsite, as well as a flourishing beaver den with a beaver swimming around collecting dinner. We saw marmots, foxes and thankfully, no grizzly bears!

Looking north from the Goldensides Trail
We harvested a bunch of wild blueberries and made some Jam. Delicious!

We were at the right place at the right time and the wild blueberries were in full harvest. Everywhere we hiked, we snacked as we went. One night we collected a bunch and made some Jam. It was my breakfast of choice for the next few weeks!

Looking west towards Tombstone Mountain (in the middle) from the Grizzly Lake trail lookout.

South of Tombstone Park, we hiked the Grizzly Lake trail, or at least half of it. We hiked up into the alpine to the “lookout” and were rewarded with this amazing view, looking over Grizzly Lake to Tombstone mountain.

After these hikes, we were a little sore and ready to head south, back towards Whitehorse to resupply, shower and map out our exploration, into the Kluane region and Haines Junction.

Here are some photos from this part of our trip! https://photos.app.goo.gl/aL6rcCuiaD4gZsU19

Here is the video we’ve put together of our experiences from this amazing place:

#4 – Dawson City!

Riding our bikes into Dawson City

We made it! Dawson City was a big part of our Yukon trip and what we were heading for right away. We had a long weekend planned for lots of fun, exploration and some gold panning! We stayed at a RV park on Bonanza Creek, just out of town, and we took full advantage of the programs and tours that were available around town.

Lots of good advice around Dawson

We settled into our site and were enjoying the very sunny hot weather. The drive up was a little bumpy with a couple of construction segments and small detours. Our first full day was spent exploring Dredge #4, one of the largest dredges from its era and very well preserved to this day. We got a guided tour as a part of a small group.

Dredge #4

We also got a tour of the SS Keno, a much smaller paddlewheeler that will go from Dawson up to Mayo to collect ore and other resources. It was a interesting tour through the boat and our guide, a local paddler was very informative and entertaining!

SS Keno

The other big historical site outside of Dawson is the Bear Creek worksite. This was a huge village of workers who would build, maintain and support all these dredges and equipment. They also cleaned up the gold and kept everything locked up. It felt like a time capsule into a long past era of hard work, lots of noise and dirt to produce thousands of ounces of beautiful gold.

Some gold we panned on Claim #6

The other important things to do in Dawson are more entertainment based! We explored the town, did some shopping, biked all the streets. We happened to be in town for the very famous Dawson International Outhouse 5km Race and Dirty Limerick Contest! We saw the launch and were impressed with the creativity of the teams, the “Harry Ploppers” vs “Skid Row”. It was hilarious and a fun activity.

The other big activity for a lot of people who visit Dawson is to have a drink with the Sour Toe at the Downtown Hotel. I made sure we did this, as Caroline was not interested. A shot of Whisky with the Toe and the famous call: “You can drink it fast, or you can drink it slow, but your lips must touch the Toe!” I enjoyed it and am fully certified if you need to see my certificate!

Earned my certificate!

Our four nights in Dawson went by so quickly. We tried to make it into Diamond Tooth Gerties, but with Covid restrictions, they were at capacity, so we did not get to catch their popular show. All the more reason to come back again. We got to see Moose swimming across the Yukon river, we explored the old cemetary on top of the hill, and we got a good feel for the town and met some locals. Overall, we loved it and would come back in a heartbeat.

Next we are off on the Dempster highway to Tombstone park for some hiking!

Click here for some photos from Dawson City and of our trip!

Here is our video from this segment, enjoy!

#3 Into the Yukon!

Rancheria Falls, Yukon Territory

We finally made it to the Yukon Border! We’ve been pushing to get through most of BC quickly as we’ve seen a lot of it, and the wildfires were not good. We decided on the Cassiar highway, definitely the road less traveled to get to the north, but we appreciated the views and experience.

We crossed over the territory boundary and went through a checkpoint to register us and fill out some forms. It was quick and easy. We were happy to be fully vaccinated and elgible to enter!

Our first day driving in the Yukon on the Alaskan Highway was great. Good weather, empty roads and lots to see. We saw a moose and 4 Chinook Helicopters fly over us.

We stayed at Teslin Lake Campground that night and also were able to reposition our camper on the back of the truck as it had shifted to one side a little bit. We’ve gotten pretty good at it now!

Testing out her bug helmet. This was the only time its been used.

Our next day was a drive into Whitehorse and some touring of the SS Klondike, a massive paddlewheeler parked right as you enter Whitehorse from the south. We had a great day exploring Whitehorse and we were staying at an RV site, so we could shower, get some laundry done and recharge the camper batteries!

SS Klondike

Here is a video of this part of our trip. You can follow along on YouTube and subscribe for notifications when we publish new videos.

As well, here is a photo album of our adventures during this segment. Click here for Photos

#2 – Famous Places – Bear Glacier, Stewart BC, and Jade City

Our second and third days on our journey north went through some pretty famous spots. We started on the Cassiar Highway, famous for being a very picturesque highway with lots of beautiful lookouts and stops. Its also known for being a little rough or ‘bumpy’, we which can confirm. 100% correct. We bounced and bumped our way along, visiting Stewart, BC a quirky little city with a big past and a close town, Hyder, USA, that we wished we could visit.

We also drove past Bear Glacier, which has been retreating away from the highway over the last few decades, but still provides a beautiful view of ice and power to move mountains!

Caroline checking out the Glacier

We drove through Dease Lake on our way north and ended up spending the night boondocking in the Jade City parking lot, which offered “FREE RV PARKING” which immediately appealed to us, of course. I also happen to be a huge fan of the tv show “Jade Fever” which explores a family Jade mining operation nearby. During our travel through, we followed Scrappy Larry, a scrap dealer from the show for a while, and saw Larry himself and his son at the Jade City store. We also got to watch Gary fire up “SixPack” their old, broken down work truck that is a big part of their mining operation and show.

Our video below shows some of these explorations and more, with some bonus footage of the Jade City work truck “Six Pack” from the tv show “Jade Fever”

Here is a link to some more photos from this segment of our trip!

A&C

#1 – Heading North!

We are ready with out first video from our grand adventure! We have been exploring northern BC and the Yukon for the last two weeks now and have seen so many beautiful and amazing places. We have driven over 3000km so far and everything has been going great. We are spending lots on gas, but we are appreciating every moment we have.

I’ve got a couple of videos completed and ready to share of our trip so far. Wifi is rare up here, and wifi with any kind of upload is even more hard to find! We are settled into an RV park in Whitehorse for a night to do laundry, have showers and upload a couple of videos!

Our first video is from the beginning of our trip, as we left Vancouver and headed north, with route unknown, as the forests were on fire in southern BC. We drove the Coqihalla #5 highway until 97c and then headed north through Williams Lake and then onto the Hundred Miles Houses. We drove almost 800kms that day!

We hope to be sharing videos and posts a little more frequently going forward. Its been so good to disconnect up north, where the cell phone signal is non-existant. We’ve been enjoying being in the present more, and to slow down lots. We have been to some remote spots, rough roads and beautiful vistas and can’t wait to share them with you.

We’ve got lots more fun content, videos, and photos to share over the next few weeks as we continue to explore the Yukon!

I’ve got some photos from this leg of our trip that you can view here in this link!

Follow along on my twitter account if you want to see a few more up to date photos of where we are! @aaronmueller

Check out our Camper!

Hi Everyone!
We hope you are well, staying cool, and enjoying the start of your summer.

Below is a video tour of our camper. This camper and truck will carry us north to the Yukon, east across Canada, and hopefully south, through the USA on our way back home to British Columbia by December 2021.

Our camper is a older Northern Lite 9-6 “Lite” Camper from the mid 90s. Its got everything we need, as you’ll see in the video and provides us with a home away from home, in the back of our truck.

Check out our Camper!

We are spending this first part of our trip visiting with Family that we haven’t seen in a while. We have been to Gordon Bay, Cowichan Lake, Chemanius, Burnaby, and Gibsons, and will be heading north in a couple of weeks. More videos to come of our adventures!

Hope to see you sometime soon!

#A&C

https://twitter.com/aaronmueller

Our Youtube Channel

Here we Go!

We made it! After a unique year, when we all wondered what was going to happen, what we might be able to do, and where we might be able to go, we think we have a solid plan for our sabbatical year ahead.

Our original plan was to travel around the world last year and obviously it was no longer possible. We have spent the year teaching, and watching, to see when the vaccines would become available, and what options we might have. We’ve had to pivot, and pivot again, multiple times and we still need to be flexible and accomodating in where we go and when.

With all that said, we are super happy to be heading out soon and starting our year of adventure. We both are at mid-points in our teaching career and are looking forward to the break and opportunity to see lots of new places and people, and to visit with lots of family and friends. We’ve been planning and saving for this trip for over 5 years now and it felt like this last year was one long over-time period!

Where are we going first?

As we are fully vaccinated now, we are able to go north to the Yukon! Its been our dream to see the north and explore this vast, beautiful territory. Our first plan was to take the ferry from Port Hardy to Prince Rupert, but unfortunately, one of the ferries blew a main engine and is out for the summer, our reservation was cancelled and we needed to pivot once again.

So, now the plan is to head up through the mainland, after visiting family in Chemainus, Vancouver, and Gibsons first. We are aiming to be in Dawson City for the end of July and to spend about 2 weeks exploring the territory. After that, we want to point our truck south and start to slowly make our way across the country!

Our truck is a 2015 F-250 Super Duty Crew Cab Long Box with some interesting modifications (That HUGE front bumper!), airbags, torklift tie-downs, bed raiser, and lots of safety equipment. Our camper is an older Northern Lite Camper 9-6 “lite” series from the mid 90s. Its got all the features we wanted in a camper, with lots of space, storage, cooking setup, fridge, furnace, solar panel, batteries and comfort. It even has a very small ‘wet’ bath! It is a light weight fiberglass camper that has an excellent reputation and is in good shape. We were lucky to be able to find it as they are popular and rare.

We hope to be able to share short videos of our experiences, adventures and escapades over the next few months. You can subscribe to our blog here to get email updates when we publish new posts, and you can subscribe to my youtube channel here

Follow along with us and stay in touch. Our plan is to maybe come back through the US once the border opens up, and to travel internationally in 2022. Stay tuned for updates as we solidify our plans and pivot around obstacles. If we are coming near you sometime this year, we would love to stop in and visit, maybe even park outside for a night and mooch some electricity and boondock in our camper out front of your place.



We hope this post finds you well, and that you are also looking forward to this next post-pandemic period that is slowly opening up across Canada.

See you soon!

Little Qualicum Falls

Hello Everyone!


Little Qualicum Falls
Recently we were able to go camping on Vancouver Island, at a beautiful little spot called Little Qualicum Falls, near Qualicum Beach, and Coombs, a little north of Nanaimo. Its a nice little campground, with excellent trails that cross over the river multiple times allowing you to explore and enjoy the set of waterfalls!

We were there when there was lots of fresh melt from the mountains and lots of white water. The campground was busy, the weather was amazing and it was another chance for us to test out all the equipment and gear for our truck and camper! We really liked our new folding camping table, our new radio, and some other little bits of gear that should make our upcoming trip a lot more comfortable.

I made a short little video of our weekend, with some walks around the falls, and a day trip to nearby Cameron Lake, along an old railway line.

We are on the final countdown to our trip! With some good news on the horizon, more people getting vaccinated, and plans for opening up our province and country, things are looking good for our summer and fall adventures. Stay tuned for more adventures and fun times!

A&C

Update and New Camera!

Hello Everyone!

Well, its been a while since we’ve posted an update and rightfully so, its been a strange and confusing year in regards to our postponed trip. We’ve had to adapt, pivot and plan for multiple scenarios and situations, but we are still taking our delayed sabbatical next school year. Obviously, everything is dependant on our vaccines, travel opening up and opportunities to go visit our friends and families. We are optimisitic and hopeful that we will have the opportunity to drive north, east and across Canada this summer/fall and perhaps travel internationally for early 2022!

In the meantime, we’ve been planning, plotting and preparing for our trip and have recently purchased a new Camera to help capture fun moments and special places along the way. We got a new GoPro Hero 8 Black:

Its a pretty neat camera with lots of great features (Image Stabilization, Waterproof, 4K) and lots and lots of accessories to help attach it to different things and options for filming. It should allow us to easily capture our hikes, views, drives and adventures. In playing around with the camera, I made a few videos already:

Here is a short video of our evening walk around the neighbourhood. I used the GoPro app on my phone to automagically put this together with intros, edits and music in the background.
Here is a “Time Warp” feature of my morning commute on my E-bike.
And here is my bike ride home!

As well, here is a picture of our truck and camper setup we are using this summer to hopefully drive around Canada. We are so excited and hopeful our trip goes as planned, but we also know we need to be flexible and adaptable and patient as things slowly get back to normal.

We hope this post finds you all well, healthy and safe! We plan to be posting more often as we get into the summer and officially start our delayed sabbatical year!

Cheers!

Aaron and Caroline

Strathcona Park Summer 2020: Waterfalls, Bears, Caves, Boats and Whales!

Come along on our most recent summer adventure to Strathcona Park, near Campbell River, and Gold River, Vancouver Island.

We camped for 4 nights at Buttle Lake Campground, and visited many beautiful waterfalls throughout the park. Lady Falls, Lupin Falls, Upper and Lower Myra Falls, as well as many lakes and beaches!

We also enjoyed exploring the Upana caves, near Gold River and got pretty deep underground!

Finally, we also got tickets to cruise for a day aboard the boat MV Uchuck III out of Gold River, that delivers to a bunch of Logging camps, Fish Farms and remote communities around Nootka Sound.

https://www.getwest.ca/

Enjoy the video below of all our highlights.