Saturday, June 16, 2012

Thursday, June 14: Up early and good internet, so I get caught up on the blog. Sometimes the text uploads well, but the photos just won’t go. Kind of a serve yourself B&B so I fixed us pancakes and off we go to explore Whitehorse, the capitol of the Yukon. There are lots of government buildings here, and beautiful murals painted on the sides of some of the buildings. The banks of the Yukon are fine soil rather than rock; winds off the glaciers blew "loess" from their end moraines and from rocky deposits of glacial meltwaters. to form thick soil deposits in this area. Spent three hours downtown: checked out the Visitors Center; the stern-wheeler that used to take goods up the Yukon to Teslin and down to Dawson City; found the “Baked” coffee shop/bakery where all the locals hang out—great scones!; visited the Old Log Church (1900), oldest building in Whitehorse still on the same spot; got gas and groceries; then south on the Alcan to the Beringia Interpretative Center. During the most recent periods of glaciation the sea levels dropped because so much water was going into the glaciers and not melting out. A huge area around the Bering Sea became dry land. They call it Beringia. This area became grassland and supported a lot of special animals and plants, and drew humans from Asia to North America. When the climate warmed and melted the glaciers, the grassland changed. Many species (like mammoths and giant beavers) became extinct, but the humans adapted and stayed. The Yukon (and parts of Alaska) were part of Beringia, so there are a lot of skeletal remains of wooly mammoths, etc. in this area. Miners unearth them all the time! Beautiful museum, and the prime exhibit is a cast of a wooly mammoth found near Kenosha WI. Long day, lots of fresh air. Read the latest Kay Skarpetta book and z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z-z.

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