Fall Colours & the Yukon Suspension Bridge

I had to make a quick trip to Skagway yesterday to pick up some stuff for the motorhome at the post office and Wings, but with Fall colours at their peak, a great lunch at the Yukon Suspension Bridge and some other fun, it turned out to be a much longer but wonderful day.

The light in the morning was dark and flat, and not even the bright colours along the South Klondike Highway made any photo stops worthwhile until I reached Windy Arm, when the sun came out for just a couple of minutes. That’s more like it, Mother Nature!
Fall colours along the South Klondike Highway
I got stopped for 10 minutes by a scaling crew bringing down a lot of loose rock from the cliffs along Windy Arm, but had a nice chat with the flagwoman, who loved my dogs 🙂 You can see one of the scalers above and to the right of the loader.
Rock scaling along the South Klondike Highway
The Fall colours faded quickly once the highway went over the low pass to Tutshi Lake, but the light started to improve in the White Pass.
Shallow Lake, White Pass, BC
With the season rapidly winding down, there were only 2 cruise ships docked at Skagway. One was the Norwegian Sun, which my Dad and I had sailed on from Vancouver to Los Angeles last September.
Norwegian Sun in Skagway, Alaska
Gulls on the quiet Ore Dock, which was a good place to take Monty and Bella for a walk and get some shots of the ships.
Gulls at Skagway, Alaska
Some of the buses at the Railroad Dock picking cruise ship passengers up for tours. The kids and I spent quite a while at the dock meeting people. Monty and Bella each seem to attract different people – Monty initially because of his blue eyes, Bella just because she is so cute. We’re more than happy to give dog-people a little “fix” while they’re far from home 🙂
Tour buses and cruise ships at Skagway, Alaska
Don’t trust photos – this looks like a really quiet camping spot, but they’re in the busy parking lot for Skagway’s Pioneer Cemetery.
Camper and glacier at Skagway, Alaska
Heading back home, I stopped at Summit Creek with a purpose, but got sidetracked by the wonderful colours at my feet.
Fall colors in the White Pass, Alaska
Fall colours in the White Pass, BC
My actual purpose was to get rid of the most obnoxious of the rock graffiti that’s become so popular. When I was driving up from Phoenix, I noticed a sign at the Columbia Icefield saying “NO” to building them, “YES” to kicking them over. I was glad to see that there’s an official policy in some places about this. To me, those are no different than spray-painting your name on the rocks – simply disrespectful of the environment and in the case of these “inukshuks”, of the culture being copied.
Kicking over rock piles in the White Pass
I was going to stop in Carcross for a late lunch, then as I reached the Yukon Suspension Bridge at 12:40, decided to try their new Cliffside Restaurant instead.
Cliffside Restaurant at the Yukon Suspension Bridge
The bison burger with a Yukon Gold beer for $21 looked like it would fit the bill nicely. There were only a few people at one table in the large facility, so I got a stool at the window to enjoy the spectacular view into the Tutshi River canyon directly below.
Cliffside Restaurant at the Yukon Suspension Bridge
The architecture with its soaring 40-foot ceiling is very impressive, but there are lots of really nice small touches as well, like these rails along the base of the bar and the table I was sitting at.
Cliffside Restaurant at the Yukon Suspension Bridge
The view of my table and beyond. The bison burger was exceptionally good, but I’m a big a fan of garlic. If you’re not, the menu has lots of other interesting options.
Cliffside Restaurant at the Yukon Suspension Bridge
Having lunch, or showing a Yukon or Alaska drivers license, gets you half-price admission to the suspension bridge. People who do neither but have a copy of my $5 guide to the South Klondike Highway with them, get $4 per person off.
Yukon Suspension Bridge
Looking back at the restaurant from near the suspension bridge.
Yukon Suspension Bridge
The bridge is quite impressive to walk across, and the property as a whole gets better every year.
Yukon Suspension Bridge
The view up the Tutshi River from the bridge. It would be great to see rafters going down the river, but my timing hasn’t been that good yet.
Tutshi River from the Yukon Suspension Bridge
It takes some work to get a broad photo of the property. This panorama was created with 4 photos shot vertically at 18mm. That’s the restaurant to the right – to get the main building in would require 2 more shots added to the left!
Yukon Suspension Bridge
Photo-bombing the North West Mounted Police! As well as the stunning scenery, there are several fun paintings and photos like this for photo ops around the property.
Photo-bombing the NWMP at the Yukon Suspension Bridge
Dropping back down to Windy Arm, the light had improved enough to make several photo stops worthwhile.
Fall colours along the South Klondike Highway
Dail Peak, at the BC/Yukon border.
Fall colours along the South Klondike Highway
Looking up some of the slopes, there was a wonderful variety of colours.
Fall colours along the South Klondike Highway
Looking back to the south.
Fall colours along the South Klondike Highway
The scaling crew was still busy and I had another 10-minute stop. There’s a job that every boy wants – climbing and rolling rocks! 🙂
Rock scaling along the South Klondike Highway
I had planned on a short stop in Carcross to see friends, but it turned into a lengthy series of visits. Among them was a tour of the historic Caribou Hotel, which the owners are determined to have open next year. From what I see now, it’s going to be a great addition to the community.
Caribou Hotel

I didn’t get home until after 5:00 pm, a good 3 hours later than I’d planned. Now I need to focus on getting everything in order for our next big trip on Sunday 🙂


Fall Colours & the Yukon Suspension Bridge — 6 Comments

  1. Stunning pictures Murray,I didn’t realize the beauty of late summer in the Yukon!

  2. Gorgeous pictures. We just got home from 2 weeks in Alaska, and it was our first time to see fall colors such as these. Different from my area, but no less gorgeous.

  3. Gorgeous pictures!
    That countryside around this time of the year makes me miss the North so much and just makes me wanna pack my bags and leave … Well, once the Army kicks me out in 10 years I will 🙂
    and until then Imma enjoy your great blog! (and some vacations over there)

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