Exploring Yellowknife, Northwest Territories

Yesterday was my first “Explore Yellowknife” day. This was dawn at 6:10, with fog filling some of the distant bays of Great Slave Lake.

I started the day with Eggs Frobisher Bay, which is Eggs Bennie with smoked Arctic char added. Yuuum – a great way to start the day 🙂

I tried to dry my wet gear out in the shower but there was too much of it so the only answer was to set it up and hang the “Do Not Disturb” sign. So much for my nice hotel room! 🙂

The airport was the first stop on my tour. This Bristol freighter commemorates the fact that Max Ward got his start here.

Being a fan of the TV series Ice Pilots, I went over to Buffalo Airways and went on a tour. I had no idea that they have as many planes as they do!

Back into town and down to Old Town, I climbed up to the Pilot’s Monument on “The Rock” for a good view of the northern part of the city.

This engine outside the old Canadian Pacific Airlines building commemorates a 1932 crash that killed famous pilot Andy Cruikshank and his engineers Horace Torrie and Harry King.

Aviation has always been an important part of the development of Yellowknife. This is what Old Town looked like in the 1930s.

Here’s a plane that I’ve seen photos of for many years – certainly the finest float-equipped Beech 18 in existence! It’s a 1951 Model 3N, C-FWWV.

I went to the Visitor Centre several times today – I had lots of questions, they had just as many answers 🙂

Walking back to the bike after one of my Visitor Centre visits, I decided that couldn’t stand to ride a muddy bike anymore. There’s only 1 car wash in town, and the 10 minutes it took to wash the bike cost over $13.

The view across Frame Lake to downtown. The Explorer Hotel is the furthest building on the left.

At 1:30 I took a 1-hour tour of the Legislative Assembly building. This is the caucus room. The acoustics are amazing – a whisper can be heard by everyone in the room, which has become known as “the room with no secrets” 🙂

This is where the business gets done. The final session was yesterday, and those papers get dumped from the public gallery by employees as soon as the government is dissolved (so, once every 4 years).

The Speaker’s chair.

As little vegetation as possible was disturbed when the Legislative Assembly building was constructed. Trees are still growing a couple of feet from the building, which can just barely be seen in this photo.

After an excellent lunch at the cafe at “the Ledge”, I rode out to the NWT Mining Heritage Society’s display a few miles northeast of Yellowknife on Highway 4. This impressive beast, called an Alligator, was brought north in 1948 to haul mining equipment across the rocks and muskeg – it didn’t work, and the convoy was abandoned in the middle of nowhere.

I’d also never seen an underground-railway ditch digger. The society has an excellent collection.

I climbed the hill above the mining display for a better look at the property.

I find this country fascinating!

A glacial erratic that got carried many miles before being dropped here as the glacier retreated.

Within a couple of years most of the Giant Mine “remediation” will be complete and this massive complex on Highway 4, the Ingraham Trail, will be just a memory.

Dawn this morning was very nice but by the time I shot this at 6:20 rain was falling close by. Soon after, heavy rain started in town, and the day isn’t looking at all good now, weather-wise 🙁

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