Alaska to Florida Adventure: Days 3 & 4
If you’ve been following along, you know my best friend and I magically made it from Fairbanks, AK, to British Columbia without any major mishaps.
The weather was still gorgeous, His Highness hadn’t escaped to play with nature, the car worked and we had plenty of sustenance (our stash: Goldfish, Wheat Thins, Belvita, and Gatorade/water). At this point, Washington (WA) was so close we could taste it and, while we were still a minimum of 2 days out and one of our drivers hadn’t slept in 2 nights (that would be me), our motto quickly became, “Let’s just get to America!”
We didn’t get negative or anything, we were just tired. Besides, with or without sleep, it was still going to be fun. No matter what happens when you’re with your best friend, whether it’s “good” or “bad” doesn’t matter because in the end the experience will simply be “ours”. And make a great story one day, naturally.
Alcan: Round 3!
It was funny. In the daylight, we didn’t find a single bottomless ravine or any pits of death that we thought we were going to drive into the night before (mysterious…) but our trek along the fabulously isolated Alcan came to an end when we reached its starting point in Dawson Creek.
Dawn Creek was a little town of awesome. It’s main street actually resembled a main street with businesses, PEOPLE, signs everywhere and traffic (who knew I could miss traffic? My brain: “Ah! Traffic! My old friend!”). First things we did were hit the visitor center to stretch and use the facilities (Megan bought some postcards and I regret not getting a t-shirt or something, I totally should have) after which we took some photographic proof of our arrival and crawled to a nearby bakery.
Dawson Creek Old Fashioned Bakery (Swedish, actually) was adorable. Small tables and stands sported their pastries (come in cute wrapping) with a wall of bread behind the counter and, as you can imagine, it smelled fantastic! Oh and they also sold sandwiches (Megan remembers she bought a cucumber sandwich. I have no idea what I ate...). It was neat because it felt like a fun treat and we didn’t have to go hunting for it. We sat down at a patio table and ate leisurely (His Highness was allowed to join us). If/when we do this insanity again, I’d like to stop there again.
To the Land of Chainsaw Art!
After Dawson we came upon a place called Chetwynd where we discovered 2 things that made us smile: (1) a 7-11 (Megan hadn’t seen one in 5 years), and (2) an army of ridiculously cool chainsaw sculptures (of everything from hockey players to mermaids, how do you even do that with a chainsaw?!). We want to revisit Chetwynd, too.
The Bee of Luxury
We started passing through more town/city-ish places and became one of many travelers who enjoyed the terrifically smooth roads. Our last night in Canada, we debated over RV resorts and went with one that was advertised as having bathrooms and showers (showeeeeers! –You have to sing that word to get the correct effect). The place was called the Bee Lazee RV Park & Campground in Prince George and oh my goodness it was like Heaven we were sooo happy we found it!
The Park offered private parking areas with picnic tables and also had a few small buildings. Aside from the main office, there was what looked like a pump house for a tiny pool (closed, seasonal use) and two others that served as men and women’s facilities. The facilities felt 5-star to us: think large bathroom stalls, large vanity stalls with sinks, rugs, stools, mirrors (obviously) with plenty of hooks to hang your bags on, and also enormous shower stalls (there was a standing shower at the end but there was so much room to change, you could’ve brought in a pony with you). Anyway, a great choice.
We settled in with plenty of daylight (no more whimsical night menageries for us), leisurely showered, set up mosquito nets in the Jeep windows so we could keep them cracked, made dinner out of whatever was in our stash and then fell asleep to a Dresden files audiobook. (I actually slept!)
In the morning, we stopped at gas station for caffeine and goodies and found these funky potato chips (we’d never seen steak flavored Lays and the idea of a potato chip tasting like meat was so wrong that Megan had to get them; yes, they tasted like steak).
The Last (Canadian) Hurrah!
I was happier driving on roads with cars, gas stations and people however Megan was not a fan of the weird bridges, tunnels, blind turns on steep inclines and random Jeep-shoving wind gusts. The fix: strategic seat swapping.
We reached Hope and were pleased to immediately find a Dairy Queen. Since it was the only chain restaurant sign we recognized, we stopped (good thing they have more than just ice cream now) and were warmly received by the cashier thanks to Megan’s “Always Keep Fighting” shirt. And then we got the heck out of town because WE WERE ALMOST TO AMERICA.
Arriving at the border about 5PM on a Friday, we anticipated some wicked traffic at the customs checkpoint that may or may not resemble a parking lot. Megan thought we’d get stopped or have to unpack and then somehow need to repack the Jeep (a daunting feat to attempt a second time). But the worry was needless because it was more like a Wendy’s drive-up window. Brief. Then we cruised into a little historic area on the other side, already scoping out the directions on how to get to Megan’s relatives in Bellingham.
Thus concludes the Canadian leg of our Alaska to Florida Adventure. Next? Well, the rest of the United States. To Florida! Next: The Green Queen
[Did you wanna read the AK to FL mayhem from the beginning? Start here: Road Trip Manifesto: Go Big or Don’t Go.]