Day 14 Liard Hot Springs & off to the Yukon

Our starting mileage for the day was 5601 kilometres. Officially we had spent two weeks on the road. We had a couple destinations in mind, Liard River Hot Springs Provincial Park, then Watson Lake Campground in the Yukon.

When we woke in the morning the temperature was only 7 Celsius, which is not what we were used to for the middle of July, but then again, we were in Northern British Columbia. As we headed back out to the highway to start our drive, the sun was shining bright, and by 10:20 a.m. the temperature had risen to 17 Celsius. On our drive, we saw quite a bit of wildlife, our bear count rose to eight, six black bears, and two brown bears.

Bighorn Sheep
Bighorn sheep Lamb
Reindeer
We happened upon a Reindeer taking a tinkle.
Two reindeers
Black Bear
Brown Bear

We arrived at Liard River Hot Springs around lunchtime, and our first thought, was we wished we had booked a campsite there! Sadly the campground was full, but we were still able to visit the hot spring. This hot spring was completely different from Miette Hot Springs, in that it is a natural spring. First you take a walk along a boardwalk through a boreal spruce forest before arriving at the spring which is also surrounded by the boreal forest. The water temperature ranges from 42 to 52 Celsius!

As you meander through the river, the leaves in the trees are rustling, there are birds fluttering around, singing to each other, and if you are lucky enough you may see a marmot sunning him/herself on the boardwalk, which we did!

Enjoying the hot spring at Liard River Hot Spring Provincial Park.
Enjoying the hot spring at Liard River Hot Spring Provincial Park. I was unable to enter the top of the hot spring, it was just far to hot for me.
The much cooler end of the hot spring.
The much cooler end of the hot spring.
A marmot
A marmot.

After swimming around in the hot spring, we were exhausted from the heat of the water, and smelled horribly of rotten eggs! The water does not have the most pleasant odor, but the heat makes up for it. We felt totally relaxed afterwards, and actually dreaded getting back in the car again, when we both just really needed a nap.

The drive to Watson Lake Territorial Campground, took us up through British Columbia, into the Yukon, back into British Columbia, then up to the Yukon again. Two different time zones along a very curvy stretch of highway.

Sign post forest Watson Lake, Yukon

We camped at site #29 at Watson Lake, the campsite was fabulous, but at the same time it felt like I was in the Alfred Hitchcock movie The Birds with the extremely watchful ravens and grey jays encircling us. The ravens observed every move we made, until they were satisfied we were not a threat to them. It was weird.

As I walked around the camp, I met a couple from Albuquerque, New Mexico, and a talented woodcarver from Whitehorse.

Campsite at Watson Lake Territorial Campground
Campsite at Watson Lake Territorial Campground

Next destination – Whitehorse, Yukon.

I joined the senior’s centre!

I’m not sixty-five yet, I still have another nine years to go, but that has not stopped me from joining the local seniors centre. Our city has a 55+ program. This may be a way to start preparing us for the obvious inevitable “golden age” of sixty-five. Either way, I am having a damn good time as a young senior.

Twice a week I take yoga, one is a gentle yoga class, with an amazing instructor who tells me as long as I am practising breathing I am still doing yoga. The second yoga class is hot yoga, and I have been known to fall asleep near the end, and the nice lady beside me, lets me sleep for the last fifteen minutes or so, then wakes me up. She is a dear. I do love the hot yoga class, I tend to be a little more flexible in the heat.

The third class I am taking is woodworking. My husband is exceptionally talented when it comes to working with wood, either fixing things around the house or building a new deck around our pool. All of our children had the opportunity to take carpentry in high school, and I was always quite jealous of what they were able to learn. Now it is my turn. The first project each student has to construct is a shelf, because it gives us the opportunity to learn all the different machines in the class – a chop saw, table saw, joiner, planer, band saw, router, and belt sander.  I actually made three shelves, which are now stained and hung in my sewing room.My first shelf

Our kids gave me my own tool belt for my 56th birthday plus a level, and a few other handy tools.

My second project was a bat box not baseball bats, but a house for real bats. Bats need homes, and they eat a lot of mosquitoes. When I went to buy the wood for my bat box, I did not examine it very well, and it wasn’t until I went to use it, that we realized it was quite warped in places.  I still used the wood, but the bat box looks a bit odd in places, though I don’t think the bats will mind if of course they move in. Hopefully when the weather is nice, I can convince my son and husband to climb on top of our roof, then up the chimney to hang the it. We’ve had some nice days, but I am still waiting. I don’t think they like the idea of climbing the chimney.

Now when, not if, the bat house makes it to the chimney, I wonder who I will be able to convince to climb back up there and clean out the bat house occasionally?