Day 5: Lindeman City to Log Cabin
Today is the last day on the trail. There is not railway service this summer so we are walking out to the Klondike highway where we will rendezvous with our friend Alex. Another excellent weather day, wind calm and the bugs are having a great day as well!
Pre GPS day: Ron studies the map around Bare Loon Lake (yes, heard some loons). We dawdle, enjoying the weather, solitude and general surroundings as our meeting time is 6pm. The trail is well used and blazed with orange trail tape, especially useful when snow covers the trail. All too soon, we come to the train tracks and there, turn right.
Walking on the tracks is awkward as the timbers are set too far apart for a comfortable step. The gravel in between is uneven and moves underfoot. I test the alternative, walking on the rails. Not recommended unless your balance is superb and you have eyes on the bottom on your feet. Quickly, I gave this option up, preferring to keep my head up and look around.
It was great to enjoy views of wet soggy beaver country from the high and dry vantage point of the train embankment. The mix of old and new junk discarded beside the tracks provided an interesting cross section of rail road history and current human activity.
The rail line swings east for a long stretch through an open flat marshy area where only the beavers seem to around. A kestrel perches on a tree top before dashing off in search of quarry. Clouds start to gather, humidity builds and I start to think about my rain gear.
Abandoned fences, more telegraph lines in tatters, a few railroad maintenance shacks are relics from more recent eras but still interesting. Despite the warnings that the trail would be swamped with hikers, trekkers and general adventure seekers, except for the evening designated campsites, it was rare to meet many hikers during the day.
The Chilkoot Trail became our own ‘trail of discovery’: not of gold but of history as we learned and lived the same route of as those gold seekers 100 years ago. Only about 1/10th of the people who started at Skagway arrived in Dawson City. The next part of our journey would take us to Dawson where we would pick up the gold rush thread.