115 Creek, milepost 403, British Columbia
Thursday, June 21, 1973
Directions on the Alaska Highway were, in 1973 (I don’t know if they still are) given with reference to the milepost markers beginning with Mile 0 in Dawson Creek, and Mile 1523 in Fairbanks, Alaska (the official end of the highway is actually in Delta Junction, a few miles shy of Fairbanks, but a large sign in the middle of Fairbanks says (or said back then) that it’s the end). At any rate, that’s what’s with the “milepost 403” notation in the location of today’s entry. Sometimes I put that in my diary entries, sometimes I didn’t. I don’t know why 115 Creek is named 115 Creek, but apparently it was a provincial park that must not exist anymore, since googling it is not bringing up an official website. We also went through a small community called Wonowon that day, which was, appropriately enough, situated at milepost 101.
The highlight of the day’s drive was a moose sighting. A cow and her calf, apparently. We also stopped to add a bug screen to the front of the car. I do have vivid memories of the mosquitoes in that part of the world. It seemed that the farther north we went, the more there were and the bigger they got. But I suspect that at least part of the reason for the bug screen was also for its gravel-fending properties, to keep the windshield from getting hit. We had long since lost the pavement by milepost 403, since only the first 70-something miles of the road were paved at that point. We were well into the 1200 miles of gravel. The next pavement would be at the Alaska border.
We also bought postcards at a gas station/general store and mailed them from the in-store post office, which makes me wonder how many cell phone towers and/or wifi hotspots there are along the Alaska Highway now.
We also seesawed back and forth with a German gentleman in a VW Vanagon whom we’d met the night before, and one of the families with kids.
It’s amazing how little I wrote about the scenery. What I remember of it along the early parts of the road was an unending forest of scrubby evergreens with a few lakes along the way. But that would change soon.