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"two roads diverged in a wood, and I -- I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference." -- Robert Frost

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Heading north along the Alaska Highway in British Columbia, Canada

Fort Nelson, British Columbia
The town was established in 1805 as a fur trading post. When the Alaska Highway was built, Fort Nelson grew to match its importance as a center for goods and services along the route. Fuel was available and well-priced in Fort Nelson.

The Northern Rockies Regional Recreation Center gave a great afternoon driving stop. It houses the visitor information center, with a free opportunity to access the Internet and take a break in a beautiful multi-use community facility.

Caribou cross the Alaska Highway near Summit
The drive beyond Fort Nelson climbs in elevation through Steamboat and Summit. The grades are steep. Stone sheep, bear and caribou may be seen. The Milepost contains a note warning drivers of “dramatic and sudden weather changes.” We were surprised to see a couple of motorhomes pulled over in turnouts, apparently settling in for the night while snow was falling.

We opted to drive on and found a great haven at Toad River Lodge, where we camped for the night. Of all the places we visited along the Alaska Highway, we still marvel at the highest speed wireless Internet service we ever experienced. The ground was still frozen, so the lodge could only offer electrical power without water or sewer.

The caribou just keep coming across traffic
Our practice as we traveled along the Alaska highway was to keep our fresh water at about half full. And, when a dump station or sani-dump, as they are known in Canada, was available at a good sized town, we would use it. Because we traveled in the shoulder season when the ground in many places was still frozen, we tried to take advantage of opportunities when they arose so that we would not be caught in a “need-to-take-on-water” or “need-to-empty-tanks” situation.
Toad River offered great RV lodging

Getting ready for the Alaska Highway—easy shoe storage
For us to be traveling, exploring and working, we would need more changes of shoes than we would ordinarily take on an RV journey. For shoe storage, we found very lightweight three-pocket fabric shoe holders at a discount store. We fastened four of them around the edge of the bed. Suddenly twelve pairs of shoes had a home within easy reach and completely out of the way. These shoe storage devices are also available at camping stores.

With ground still frozen in May at Toad River Lodge, 
there were no water hook-ups. Come summer, this would
be an ideal stopover or destination

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