Day 18 - Fish instead of spaghetti!

Distance: 51.6mi | Time: 4:14 | 1723 kcal | 1627ft

130821-extreme-dusty-condition-on-alaska-highwayWe just ate our first self-caught fish and it was really delicious! We fished it in the Pickhandle Lake about 45mi after Beaver Creek, through a tip of an old couple, who lives next to the Highway in the middle of nowhere. The landscape today was as promised amazing. We rode through a valley with tall mountains on the sides. Thanks to tail-wind and a smart planned road (relatively flat) we made some fast progress. Section wise the road was unpaved, but only about 1/2mi. Signs warned us of the “extreme dusty condition”. The road-workers probably were never on the Dalton, which was way worse than that! Next to the road we saw many untouched lakes. In one of them we discovered a bathing moose. Tomorrow we will try to reach the Kluane Lake to find a nice place to camp right next to the lake, since today we stay another time on a governmental campground. Actually we wanted to stay next to the nearby creek, but Caro heard noises and got scared because the noise was from a big animal. That made us nervous and we decided to go on one of the campgrounds.130821-along-the-alaska-highway

Day 19 - destructed in Destruction Bay!

Distance: 69mi | Time: 7:08 | 3051 kcal | 2454ft

130822-cycling-alaska-highway-yukonDestruction Bay, that’s where we currently are and also feel. Having head strong head wind for 65 miles really brings your energy to its limits. Although we were riding through amazing landscapes with incredible views on this lonely road along the way, we could not really enjoy it today. Sometimes we stopped, just to stand and not do anything. We were trying to find different excuses, just so we don’t have to ride any further. Both of us was pushing the other one further after a too long break and so we finally made it to this bay, were we are now. After arriving here, we stopped at the gas station to ask for a good place to set up the tent e.g. next to the lake and the lady just said she cannot recommend staying in a tent in any of the places here. She said there are very many bears around here and after asking her where she would recommend staying. So she basically said what we already knew, that bears are around. Well not exactly, after we went down to the lake, we saw Grizzly Bear tracks also, so this time they might be a bit closer than usual. Therefore we decided to put both bear sprays inside our tents. People are reacting very different when it comes to bears here. We will write about that phenomenon later. Afterwards we had a late night beer in the nearby bar. If you ever make it to the Yukon, you should try the beer from the Yukon Brewery, it’s really good especially after such a day!130822-white-river-bicycle 130822-kluane-lake

Day 20 - Kluana Lake: Little Paradise in the Yukon!

Distance: 67.7mi | Time: 6:54 | 2434 kcal | 2625 vertical feet

blue-colour-kluane-lakecar-destruction-bayToday we realized how large the Kluana Lake actually is. From Destruction Bay we rode another 25mi along the lake. On some spots the water was so clear and smooth, that it acted as a mirrow to the mountains in the back. At the last part of the lake there were many good spots for camping, it’s a pity that we had to keep going further. Behind the lake we rode through incredible high mountains with glaciers on the top. The wind, which came of course again front the front, it got really cold at the top of the passes we had to cross that today. Just around dawn we reached Haines Junction. On the way we met a bicycle rider, who started his ride from New York. He told us he had seen a bear just a few miles before, but somehow we still didn’t get him in front of the camera. Our bear-sighting-chart is still on zero. We were wondering why this is and yet took another shower in the Kluana Inn Motel in the Haines Junction.cycling-along-kluane-lakemirrors-kluane-lake

Day 21 - Bear Time!

Distance: 99mi | Time: 8:18 | 3391 kcal | 2788 vertical feet

After 1100 ridden miles we saw the first bear today! A car going the other direction stopped to warn us about a Grizzly standing about one mile on the shoulder of the road. So we made the GoPro’s ready and removed the safety bars from the bear sprays just in case and kept riding. After a bit over a mile we also saw him. He was sitting in the bushes eating berries and was not interrupted through the traffic on the road. From the lane we would have used he was only about 15 feet away so we decided to ride by on the other side of the road. And that’s was when the bear had seen us, he stood up to his rear legs only to get a better view of us. And he was so tall! He was looking right and left and kept eating the berries next to the road. We waited until two cars parked directly between us and the bear and made a small barrier between the animal and us. We somehow had to get past the bear somehow because we already had head wind again. In this case our bear sprays would have been more affective on us than the bear. The cars were now directly between us and the bear and waved their hands to us that we keep riding on the other side of the road. We slowly were riding on the other side observed by the bear, which was looking up again, but did not do any actions to walk after us. Further up the road we stopped again and videotape the situation a bit, where you can still see one of the cars which stopped. It was an amazing experience to see one of these animals in their natural environment.