Tom & Charlene's Excellent Adventures travel blog

Ferry across the Klondike River

Top of the World Highway


Snow on TOW

More Snow

Chicken, AK Post Office

Chicken, AK

Big Chicken, AK

End of the Alaska Hwy, Delta Junction, AK

Wednesday, July 16

Another long day on the road. Day started with filling up the RV - $1.599/L = OUCH! Will be glad to get to Alaska for the cheaper gas prices.

The only way to get to the Tops of the World Highway from Dawson City is to take the free ferry across the Klondike River. We were the 4th RV in line and made the trip across in about 5 minutes. Cars were lined up on the other side ready to head over to Dawson.

This is one of the most scenic drives in Canada but unfortunately it was raining. The highway is 78 miles long from Dawson City to the Taylor Highway in Alaska. The road wasn’t too bad – dirt and gravel with very few spots paved. And of course no guardrails – it was a long way down. The higher we traveled the colder the temperature and rain seemed to fall harder. We saw snow in several places as we climbed higher. The closer we drove to the summit the lower the visibility. Crossing the summit we were driving in the clouds – as thick as any fog we’ve driven in. It took us 2 hours to reach the border (65 miles). A great surprise was that the first 13 miles in Alaska were newly paved. After those first 13 miles we got a big disappointment – most of the 96 miles of the Taylor Highway is a dirt & gravel washboard road. Dirty and bumpy. Our poor RV was a mess by the time the trip was over. We (Tom!) has driven 19 days and 4176 miles to reach Alaska.

We took a break in the trip and stopped at Chicken, AK. Chicken was a boomtown during the gold rush. Now it is a place for gas, food and T-shirts along the Taylor. We had soup & sandwiches at the Chicken Café. The Chickn Café complex included a gift shop, liquor store and saloon – whatever the countryside needs! Lots of people making the stop. Gas was an almost reasonable $4.899. On the way out of town we had to stop at the log cabin Chicken Post Office. Tom talked to the Postmaster. They get mail delivered twice a week by plane. People come in to pick up their mail, no local or rural route delivery. She has 64 lock boxes that are rented and has a waiting list of people wanting a box. If they don’t have a box the mail is general delivery and she hold it until they come in. Her farthest customer lives 80 miles away.

The Taylor followed a pretty little creek that turned into a fast moving river as we proceeded south. We passed large sections of forest that had been destroyed by a forest fire. Grasses & shrubs were coming back but no trees of any kind.

Reached Tok and were excited to find gas for $4.269 – woo-hoo! Back in the good old USA! With the fill-up we received a free carwash. That means a sprayer with cold water – no soap. Washed off the dirt and most of the gummy bugs – RV almost gleamed.

Checked at the Visitors’ Center at Delta Junction. We had planned to eat at Rika’s Roadhouse at the Big Delta Historical Park but found it was closed today. Instead we opted for a very good pizza at Bella’s Restaurant.

It was time to find a parking spot for the night. We stayed in the parking lot at the Big Delta Historical Park for $5.00. Dry camping – no facilities but that didn’t bother us since we are self-contained. Fell asleep listening to the rain.

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