JOURNAL : August 22, 2010
|Series||Biking the Klondike Highway|
From Fraser, British Columbia I disembarked the White Pass & Yukon Route railroad and met with the biking team at the station. Bundled into two vans we headed a few miles down the road to the Pass to begin our 15-mile downhill trip to Skagway.
A Valley near the BorderView All Sizes
Roadside WaterfallView All Sizes
At an altitude of 2,865 feet White Pass Summit is a great place to start. It's all downhill from there. After a brief orientation and safety meeting we were fitted with raingear and assigned a two-wheeled companion.
For about a mile we coasted downhill in single file, riding our brakes the whole time. We were instructed to keep a specific distance between each other and not to pass. Some in our group were seniors and our speed was geared for the slowest common denominator. After awhile this became very irritating. Often I was riding too close to the gentleman in front of me. Worse yet the group in front of us was even slower and soon we were scrunched up behind them and their van, inching down the mountain at an excruciating crawl.
WP&YR Railroad from Klondike HighwayView All Sizes
Should I make a break for it? Consequences were weighed and ultimately I simply released the brakes and streaked passed both groups. Outta sight within seconds on the misty road. The adventure had begun.
My Rented BicycleView All Sizes
I cannot begin to tell you how much fun this was. Several factors were important. First, this roadway is super clean. Constantly washed with wet weather, the surface has excellent traction. In Southern California it rarely rains and oil builds up so the roadways are slippery when wet. Second, as a mountain biker the fun is usually offset with a healthy dose of pumping uphill. Not this time! Also, the scenery was amazing: Waterfalls, forests, rivers, mountains and valleys. I even saw the same train that had taken me up to Fraser. And finally, traffic was very light. More cars would have meant more attention to the road and less on the view.
A few miles down the road at the U.S. Port of Entry the driver caught up with me and issued a pleasant warning. It was obvious he understood the situation and there were no hard feelings.
Because they were cool about my solo cycle, the folks at Sockeye Cycle Co. deserve a recommendation. Conveniently located in the center of Skagway, they offer exciting bicycling adventures in the vast area surrounding Skagway and Haines, as well as extended tours for cycling enthusiats. Check ‘em out!
About this day
August 22, 2010
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Pitchfork Falls from Klondike HighwayView All Sizes