Alaska 2023

Day 05

July 12

BlueBelle and me are already to head out for Stewart and Hyder.  
As I head out of Prince George proper there's someone else that has decided to also leave out a bit early to avoid city traffic.  
Finally I come a place where I can get around them and escape to the open road.  
But unfortunately, the open road turns into a gravel one that ...  
goes on and on through Vanderhoop. As I tell people, a lot of the roads in the Yukon, British Columbia and Alaska are paved - just at different times of the year and in different places.  
The sun is trying to peek through the overcast but it looks like a bare light bulb in a smoke filled room right now.  
I finally arrive at Fort St. James which boasted of its 'World Class Chicken Racing' back down the road. But this sign talks about horse racing so I have to wonder what happened to the chickens.  
The overcast is starting to lift so I can get a little bit clearer view of some of the lovely scenery surrounding me.  
I'm beginning to make out some mountains in the far distance but not ones with snow on their mantles.  
I skipped breakfast as I did not want to wait around for a restaurant to open. When I get to Burns Lake, there's an A&W open and they serve breakfast of a sort. Gas is nearby, so I take advantage of that before I hit the A&W.  
It's kinda like a hamburger but with an egg patty and a sausage patty instead of a burger. Not bad just a little different but it fills the empty spot and that's the main goal.  
With BlueBelle and me both fueled up now, we get on down the road to enjoy more of the lovely views from my two wheeled recliner.  
I don't think the moose are reading the signs as there are none to be seen ...  
and I don't think the rest of the animals are reading the signs either for they are conspicuous by their absence.  
Finally I get a glimpse of some snow covered mountains in the distance. That is one of the sights that has brought me back to this area for the fourth time.  
Last time I was through here there was some sort of protest sign hanging on that bridge. I guess either the protest ended or the sign blew away.  
The rugged terrain strikes an interesting contrast to the rolling hills back home.  
I always enjoy riding alongside a running river and this is no exception.  
When I get to Kitwanga, the old 'North To Alaska' sign has either been removed or fell over. It's a bit of disappointment as I had gotten one for ...  
Redbird ...  
and SweetTreat ...  
  and Frost. But looks like BlueBelle is out of luck for this shot.  
  As I turn on to the Cassiar, I am amazed at how good a condition the roadway is right now. Usually it's pretty rough but this looks like recent pavement.  
Before long I'm at the turnoff that will take me into Stewart, my stop for the evening, and then on into Hyder.  
It's lovely run and I enjoy the beautiful solitude it provides.  
I slow down and keep my eyes open so I can stop and get a picture of BlueBelle at the Bear Glacier ...  
like I did for Redbird ...  
and for SweetTreat...  
And Frost. I don't want the other girls to give BlueBelle a hard time because they did and she didn't.  
The numerous waterfalls that come tumbling down the mountain sides have a special beauty all their own.  
I decide instead of stopping at the motel in Stewart I'll just ride on through to Hyder and get the pictures that I want and stop at the Boundary Gift Shop.  
At least now I have an Alaskan state line sign for BlueBelle but hopefully there will be some more before this trip is over.  
This old building was one of the first in the area for the United States. The Alaska/Canada border has since been moved and it is technically on Canadian soil now. The obelisk in the background marks where the boundary used to be located.  
It is known as 'Storehouse #4' and it was constructed by the Army Corps of Engineers in 1896. There have several restoration efforts over the years to insure that it remains in good condition.  
I pass by what was once the Boundary Gift shop before Miss Caroline lost her husband and relocated.  
Her new shop has her living quarters upstairs and the shop is really nice inside.  
And she has some of the best fudge in world here so I stock up on emergency rations should I be stranded on the road somewhere.  
She is quite the lady and always fun to talk to. She never remembers me until I start talking about my past visits. But it's no wonder as many people as she has stopping by the store.  
While I'm there a group of ladies riders from Canada have stopped by. My hat (and helmet) goes off of to ladies that are willing to learn ride and travel by motorcycle.  
With that bit of business taken care of, I head back to the King Edward Hotel where I usually stay when I am in this area.  
I check in and get BlueBelle all set up for the evening and make my way up to my room.  
Evidently the place has changed hands as I notice of lot of differences but the bear is still where it always is.  
When I get the road crude washed off and go back downstairs the restaurant, it has really changed. It used to be quite spacious and roomy but it has been totally remodeled and the eating area is much smaller and more modern. I order the halibut and fries and it is pretty tasty,  
On trips past, I would take a day to run up to the Salmon Glacier but with my freshly 'installed' shoulders I decided I would pass on it this time. It's a rough construction road and would beat my shoulders up quite a bit based on my previous years experiences. I figured discretion is the better part of valor so I'll only be spending one night here. And it's not long until I'm off a road that needs no introduction and has no construction.