The push for home: Stewart to Whitehorse in 23 hours

Having decided to go home a few days early so that Cathy and I could go away for an extra-long Canada Day weekend, and with no good weather where I wanted to stop, I was home in Whitehorse 23 hours after leaving Stewart. The route is simply up Highway 37A (the Glacier Highway), then the Stewart-Cassiar, then the Alaska Highway.

I pulled away from the Bear River RV Park right after breakfast and a short walk, at 07:45 on Day 61 of the trip, June 25th. Home was 1,026 km away. Click on the map to open an interactive version in a new window.

Map, Stewart, BC to Whitehorse, Yukon
There are places where the bed of the Bear River appears to be a few inches above the level of the highway. The rock in the foreground was put there a couple of years ago to stop erosion when an overflow channel moved too close to the highway.

The Bear River near Stewart, BC
I was confident that I’d have the highway to myself for at least a couple of hours, so just stopped on the road to get photos of a couple of the best waterfalls along the Glacier Highway.

Waterfall along BC's Glacier Highway near Stewart, BC

Waterfall along BC's Glacier Highway near Stewart, BC
Low cloud and fog rising off the Bear River may have made the peaks vanish, but was still pretty interesting visually.

A misty morning on BC's Glacier Highway near Stewart, BC
At Km 40, the skies started to clear as I passed the Bear Glacier.

Clearing skies on BC's Glacier Highway near Stewart, BC
At 10:08, we reached the Km 265 post of the Stewart-Cassiar Highway, which is 106 km north of Meziadin Junction where the Glacier Highway meets it.

Northbound at Km 265 of the Stewart-Cassiar Highway
Along Eddontenajon Lake south of the community of Iskut at about Km 396, at 11:45. Rain showers were frequent enough to keep most of the bugs washed off the windshields, so I didn’t even need to stop to do that.

Eddontenajon Lake on the Stewart-Cassiar Highway
Dropping down from Gnat Pass to Dease Lake at Km 475. I’ve overnighted a couple of times at a pullout at Lower Gnat Lake, a particularly scenic spot on the Stewart-Cassiar Highway, just above the treeline. This time, I just stopped to take Bella and Tucker for a walk. My GPS said that I’d be home at 9:36 pm, so I was fairly sure that I’d push through.

Dropping down from Gnat Pass to Dease Lake at Km 475 of the Stewart-Cassiar Highway

I had a long fuel stop at Dease Lake, Km 488 – it was very busy. But while there, I had a long chat with a couple from Atlanta with a big motorhome towing a Jeep and dirt bike. They had just spent a few days in Whitehorse and couldn’t say enough about how much they loved it. That’s always nice to hear, and we do hear that sort of comment a lot from travellers.

I noted as I drove along Dease Lake that the Sawmill Point Recreation Area would be a good place to launch a kayak on a nice day to paddle over for a look at the ghost town of Laketon.

A scenic stretch of mountains at about Km 580.

Km 620, 6 k south of the small community of Good Hope Lake, at 4:20. A minute after taking the next photo, I was surprised to see a sheep alongside the highway.

Km 620 of the Stewart-Cassiar Highway
We stopped for dinner at the large Beaver Dam rest area at Km 649. Large fires burned through here in 2010 and again in 2012.

Old forest fire area at about Km 645 of the Stewart-Cassiar Highway
Heading west on the Alaska Highway at 6:05, I felt like we were almost home, but some of the storms were pretty wild and I was geting tired.

Storm on the Alaska Highway
At 7:10, I decided that the site of the long-vanished Message Post Lodge at Km 1111 would be a good place to spend the night. Bella and Tucker played and played and played in the large paved parking lot!

Message Post Lodge at Km 1111 of the Alaska Highway
It’s a lovely piece of property between two small lakes, but there’s only wreckage left now. It closed just before I started driving bus on the Alaska Highway in 1990.

Message Post Lodge at Km 1111 of the Alaska Highway
After 8:00 pm and Tucker wasn’t quite finished playing ball yet. But we were in bed shortly after that. I planned on a very early start so that we could see Cathy before she left for work the next morning.

My little dog Tucker in the RV
We were back on the road just after 03:30 on Day 62 of the trip, June 26th. I shot this right at 04:00 – back in The Land of the Midnight Sun.

04:00 on the Alaska Highway, the Land of the Midnight Sun
I pulled into our driveway right at 07:00. Our awesome Adventure was over!

Arrived home in Whitehorse with the RV after 62 days on the road

As I did after our 56-day Grand Adventure last year, I’ll be posting a summary of the costs and experiences next.


The push for home: Stewart to Whitehorse in 23 hours — 6 Comments

  1. Hi Murray;
    Thank you for sharing and allowing us on a great adventure. Glad that you all made it home safe and sound.
    Whitehorse being on a bucket list, I learned much about what to expect if we can ever get organized. I suspect that it needs to be done with some sort of RV to make the best of it.
    Have a great summer.

  2. Glad you made it home but sad the trip is over. I really enjoyed your posts with my morning coffee. Love hearing about life up your way, especially in the RV.

    • Thanks, Linda. We’re just getting started – there are many more Adventures coming this summer, all over the Yukon and into northern BC, hopefully as far south as Stewart and Fort Nelson.