Our Arrival in Dawson City

The Yukon Blind..... Canoeing the 'Big River'
Team "Imtiaz and Howard"
Sun 3 Jul 2011 08:45
Our Arrival in Dawson City
64:03.732N, 139:26.136W

Just on 11am we 'crossed the finish line' here at the iconic town of Dawson City.

I say finish line, as finally the racers did catch us and there was an official finish line, timekeepers and all, but we seemed to be strange participants who stopped just before the line, and "weren't even interested in their time...!"

We had been on a different journey though....a very special 15 days that will remain etched in both of our memories forever....They had been on a sleep deprived race to get there first. Both were no doubt triumphant in their chosen challenge.

The last two days were characterized by wild weather. On Friday when we left we would have put big money on a blue sky day, but two hours later we were in heavy thunderstorm conditions, verging on hail. I saw this as nature providing her final challenge that would make this adventure an even greater personal triumph. Team decision saw us take a brief sun patch opportunity and cut today's paddling short and seek refuge...! As fate had it the afternoon turned wonderful, providing us each with some good personal reflection time, next to the river.

Late afternoon, the first racers started coming through, breaking our special, solitary wilderness. By midnight it was raining again, and deciding on our first early morning start we woke at 5am excited about the 36 kilometre, 'final straight', paddle to Dawson... Far from straight the river had many channels and twists, and for the first time on the trip my navigation saw us get pushed onto a midstream, exposed tree trunk, spinning the canoe around, and there, to my embarrassment, we were going backwards down the river... At least we both laughed about it, as it happened....

Paddling next to a steep, rocky river cliff, I was surprised to see two seagulls come out to torment us, with loud cries, dive bombing and general aggressive behaviour. This continued for 500 metres, and then the mystery was solved: We caught up to their two weeks old chicks bobbing in the water as we sped past. Not happy that our threat had passed the parents escorted us for the next 800m. In the water, one either side off the bow of our canoe they stayed 10 metres in front till we were way out of sight of their chicks...

The approach to Dawson was full of emotion as I painted the picture for Imi, both of us sharing our different, yet similar perspectives of just how special the trip had been....

Dawson seems quite a town..... Something from a Hollywood wild west movie and we look forward to exploring its unique offerings....

The most gross of which is the "Sour toe" whisky drink. This consists of a human big toe, doused in Yukon Jack, the delicious local, liquor whisky. Hmm, initially I thought this was just a long story, but apparently it's all for real.... We shall explore, and report back! We both agreed that we won't be having one though..!

Imi's, from Dawson, Reflective Insight:

Heroic Love Today

Should we sacrifice all to eradicate human poverty as perhaps Mother Theresa, Ghandi, and Jesus would want us to do? But providing for good living for billions would result in depleted and degraded earth.

Our love should consist in leaving a fragrant and radiant earth so that future humanity can leave inspired lives. Some may object that unless people are fed and are well off they cannot be inspired.
I can concede that for many material well-being takes precedence over beauty.

I guess my love for humanity is my love for those heroic humans who would rather live simple, poor lives in the midst of a world shimmering with beauty.

We plan on putting up one final 'wrap up' post over the next few days, and will email the follower list once this is up....I think Imi's specific reflections on the whole trip, will be something very special.

Hope you have been able to get something of value, no matter how small, from our adventure.

H + I