Alaska Trip Day 23: Dall Sheep, Moose and a Bear Sighting in the Yukon… 05/08/17

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Are you ready for a day full of magic and beauty, folks?

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After Tracey and I got all of our chores done, we hit the road… We went for a quick grocery shop and filled the tank with gas… The next gas station is quite a ways away, so we weren’t taking any chances…

You also have to remember that we use this gas to run our generator also… It gets pretty cold at night out here, so we like to run our heater and that eats a lot of battery power…

So, I sometimes wake up to a high pitch squealing which tells me the power has run out… I have to run the generator to get that power back… It takes the generator at least four hours to recharge everything… We always have to make sure we have enough gas for our #generator and #travels… #TheMillenniumFalcon’s engine and the generator take from the same gas tank… The generator will not run after the gas tank is less than a quarter tank full, so you won’t eat up all of your gas and be left stranded with nothing for the drive…

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Right away, we started seeing #wildlife… And right away the roads became extremely rough…

I tried my hardest to snap a shot of these little #PrairieDogs… They were all up along the road…

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Cautiously popping out of their holes…

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#TheTravelingMac couldn’t resist parking and trying to get a closer picture of these cute little things… I never thought I would see prairie dogs up here… I thought they only lived in deserts and places like Australia…

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I found one of their holes and it appeared that they tunnel under the road and pop up at the other end… Pretty ingenious… They eliminate having to cross the deadly roads…

They were too elusive to get a close picture… And as I was looking in one of their holes, I could here a prairie dog in the woods alerting his friends… So, they even have lookouts for their complex roadside operation… I am completely impressed… As soon as that dog in the woods would make his high pitch warning, all of the dogs along the road would disappear… Wow, what survivors!

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Well, with #TheFalcon vibrating like crazy, #TheTravelingMac was holding onto the steering wheel for dear life… It was perfectly fine that the road was slowing us down though because we were already hitting huge patches of #permafrost… Most of them marked with signs yet some not…

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So, its better off that we are on a rough ride that forces us to slow down because an easy ride just may lead us to disaster…

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It’s that momentary collapse of sense and reason that can do you in up here… The roads could be perfect, the view magnificent… You could be having a real #SpiritualMoment, with your favorite tunes blaring… So you naturally speed up and enjoy the free coasting ride, as you take in everything around you…

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Then Whaaaaam!!!! The whole vehicle and house lurches… You suddenly realize you have hit permafrost as your vehicle tries to veer off of the road… You hear a huge thud as your vehicle bottoms out and objects fall out of the cabinets… the pilot is grabbing onto the steering wheel for dear life as the co-pilot tries to keep from falling out of her seat…

It is petrifying folks! And its always on the back of your mind… But right when you forget about this nasty stuff, that’s when it catches you sleeping and you get the shock of a lifetime… We hit permafrost so badly one time, The Millennium Falcon actually stalled and lurched back into reverse… Luckily I got the gears back into drive before any real damage was done but it was definitely a huge wake up call… Tracey and I thought our trip was over right then and there… We just sat for a few minutes after and just enjoyed the relief… My heart was racing… I didn’t want this to become one of those trips…

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But as we all know, The Millennium Falcon is a beast!!! She can never be conquered! She may be a huge pain in the ass but she gets the job done… And when she does eventually conquer the #ALCAN to #Alaska and back, she will be well on her way to becoming a legend…

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There are much newer and well built vehicles that have become victims of the ALCAN… Broken axles and broken windshields are its signature scars…

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Well, after a really bumpy, vibrating, hellish couple of hours the #world began to open up… Hardly a car on the road, we were heading into the deep #wilderness of #NorthernCanada by now…

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And it started to get really #magical up here… The wind was blowing dust which masked the road… it was almost like a film, as the dust blew by and the road slowly revealed itself…

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It looked like something you would see in Yellowstone National Park… There were vast flat lands for miles that were met by mountains in the distance…

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It gave you a real sense of space and time as you drove along this huge stretch… The mountains getting larger as you got closer… Dust and dirt whipping by your vehicle as she sways a little towards the the shoulder from the blast of the sudden wind that hits and tries to take her…

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Then to top it off, Tracey and her trusty guide told us to pay attention to the mountains for little white dots… This is where the #DallSheep reside…

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And what a location they have picked for a home…

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I guess they live in this area year round… They keep to themselves up in the mountains, free from any predators considering the trip to get them isn’t worth the reward…

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I wish I had a better camera but I got some pretty impressive shots here considering I’m only using an iPhone and these sheep are miles and miles on top of the mountain…

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They were definitely aware of my presence… they kept on peering over the ledge at us… I took a good look at them through a pair of binoculars… I wonder how they keep so white in this dusty, dry area…

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We were now experiencing the real magic of the #Yukon… I like to imagine what was going through the #explorers’ minds, discovering this area for the first time…

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It’s so vast and gorgeous its scary… For when you stand out here in this enormous, massive area with inspiring sights in every direction, its like your mind goes into overload, trying to suck it all in…

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You just realize how much you don’t know out in these amazing areas…. You realize how long it took for this place to be… You realize all of the turmoil, destruction that created this gorgeous area over millions and millions of years…

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And this is the result folks… And yes, I am a part of the result because I am now experiencing this area for the first time… Now I am apart of its history… It’s like visiting a long lost relative considering I came from its cousin across the sea…

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There’s the face of a #HardenedTraveler folks… I definitely have it a lot better than my ancestors who tackled this once unforgiving area… But there are still risks today, even with all of our technology…

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For there is no way to tame this and why the fuck would you want to in the first place?

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Just look at that! Being in the middle of this hodgepodge of mountains, snow, desert, water, trees, flat lands… It makes you schizophrenic… Your head starts to hurt from the massiveness of it all…

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It’s a good pain… A pressure you feel pushing on your skull and body as you experience the complete enormity of it all…

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Your mind quickly transforms into a meditative mode… It’s almost like you can’t help but meditate because your mind can’t register its regular thoughts out here…

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My thoughts seem so minuscule and frivolous out in this simple yet complex environment… There’s no room for them out here… They just get lost in the vastness of it all…

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What I was planning on doing in the next hour didn’t seem important out here… The whole trip seemed like a child’s attempt at fulfilling a simple task that we do everyday compared to what this whole area has done and seen over millions and millions of years…

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I believe this would be the best place to heal from a horrible tragedy or loss in life because its so hard to conjure up a regular thought out here…

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If you just stand still and look around… that’s all you have to do… #Nature does the rest… It feels like your mind has been taken over by a motherly figure of sorts… It’s like #MotherNature knows you are hurting and immediately tries to heal you with her sounds, smells, sights and touch….

The most amazing feeling of it all is when those tears start to run down your cheeks and the soft, chilly breeze dries them, plastering them to your face, as you feel the long cold path of where they once formed… I am crying right now describing this feeling, it follows me to this day… And I hope it follows me for the rest of my life…

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For its an addictive feeling… The Yukon is now apart of me… The experience is now permanently stuck in my head and the feeling of it all rests deep in my heart…

And wouldn’t you know I would see one of my favorite creatures during this #SpiritualDay… The cherry on top folks… I admire this #Raven so much! If I was to come back as another creature, the raven would be my definite choice…

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So, we hit one of those gas stations we had to stop at considering there wasn’t another one for quite sometime…

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And it wasn’t just a gas station, it was an all out #RestStop… So, Tracey and I decided to get a bite to eat…

But The Traveling Mac met someone before he went in… It was an actual #NativeIndian from this area… He asked me if I wanted to smoke… I of course jumped at the chance considering I had no #weed at all…

So, I went in and ordered my food and invited my new friend inside of #TheFalcon… And boy, what an interesting character he was… and he had some good #B.C.Bud also… We smoked and talked about the area… He drives trucks up and down the coast… We also talked about crossing the border with bud… He agreed I was better safer than sorry…

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So, now after a huge spiritual moment in the #YukonTerritory and smoking some bud with a #native, I was extremely hungry… I’m pretty sure I got the Fish and Chips and Tracey got a burger… Tracey eats like bird, which is beneficial to me considering I eat her left overs all of the time… lol…

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And we couldn’t resist playing a game of #Cricket… Then this odd thing happened also… Tracey’s dart just popped out of the board and hung on the other dart… You don’t see this everyday… Another strange occurrence on a really weird day…

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Then soon after we left with our bellies full, we see this mighty, mighty creature getting a meal herself… And she wasn’t as skittish as the other #moose we have encountered…

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All I can say is “Wow!” You don’t want to encounter this gorgeous lady if she is with her young… Moose are known to be able to rip your throat out with one quick bite… They are a big threat and should always be approached with extreme caution… Once they feel threatened, they charge…

I would joke with Tracey, hoping The Millennium Falcon would get a challenge… Imagine the story I could tell… The Millennium Falcon versus a Moose… I’m sure the Moose would win… lol…

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I didn’t dare get out of the vehicle… Well, actually the responsible #co-pilot stopped me…

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So, I hung my head out of the window and took some shots…

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Magnificent creatures! Just gorgeous! That came from our earth folks… Why would you want to disrespect or harm it… I know it’s in Man’s nature to hunt it but can we just respect it at the same time? Is that possible?

If I had my way, there would only be bow hunting allowed up here… That’s where the odds are the most even… If you’re going to hunt there should be a huge risk of you getting killed also… That’s called leveling the playing field…

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We were definitely traveling through the #GoldRush part of the Yukon by now… A lot of small towns and communities had signs in the shape of gigantic gold pans for panning… Out here most of the communities don’t even make it into the double digits, they are so small… We saw a town with the population of 8 people, believe it or not… I wouldn’t mind being apart of that…

#EagleEye strikes again folks! This time I spotted an American Eagle perched on a single branch in the picture above… I wish I could have gotten a closer picture but this picture is actually pretty damn good, now I really look at it…

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And if you have never seen a #SnowshoeHare before, well here he is… These rabbits are huge! And you could see how they got their name considering there feet are bright white…

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And the day just kept on getting better and better folks… Not a worry in mind today… Just free #traveling with no expectations in the way…

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So, why not take this perfect day and opportunity to give Tracey a stab at the wheel of The Millennium Falcon… I mean, #PrincessLeia pilots the Falcon at the end of #EmpireStrikesBack… Why shouldn’t Tracey?

I really got a kick out of this! I couldn’t stop laughing… It just tickled me so much seeing her behind the wheel… And she did an amazing job, folks… I’m not so trusting when it comes to letting others drive the falcon… I just know what mistakes I have made from inexperience in the past and don’t want others to suffer the same defeat…

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But to learn, you have to do… So, this was the perfect time for Tracey to learn… We were out in the middle of nowhere with hardly a vehicle on the road… It was quite nice sitting in the passenger seat for once…

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I of course took the opportunity of snapping a few shots while enjoying a care free ride…

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But then the roads started to get a little sketchy and it started drizzling out, so we switched back…

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Tracey had a nice rest stop for us to stay at that was set back along a #lake, far from the roads view… But we missed it and boy was I glad we did… Look at what lurks in the bush above…

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You guessed it! Another #bear!

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And this one looked like a young # GrizzlyBear but I’m not much of an expert on such… All I know is he/she was trying to pack on some weight after a long #winter in this ever unforgiving terrain… He was just nibbling away at #BirchTree leaves… Eating without a worry in mind… I even tried to call out to him but he didn’t give two shits about me… I was in his house and he didn’t feel he needed to pay me any mind… His language is a lot more complex than mine… It’s the language of the wild and if you can’t speak it, you will surely perish out here…

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So, we turned around and back tracked a few miles to find this beautiful rest stop right next to a huge lake… We were surrounded by #SnowCoveredMountains… Just absolutely breath taking and gorgeous!

It was going to be a peaceful sleep tonight, folks… We had one neighbor in an #RV parked behind us, so we felt a little more safe staying here… I wish this rule wasn’t on the back of our minds the whole way up here… It kind of sucks and prohibits our adventurous nature yet at the same time… its kind of thrilling…

I guess its apart of this adventure if we like it or not… We are definitely not in control out here… Another force commands our future out here and its a force we better respect… But when you surrender to this force and actually listen to it, even though its dangerous and unpredictable, it seems like the only proper way to live…

For I never feel more free than when I am out in this mysterious, ever unpredictable world… And my freedom becomes ever more important with every passing moment out here… This feeling is only possible out here… For it is where we come from and no matter how civilized we become, it will always be apart of us… If we recognize it or not…

Goodnight folks…

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