Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada – 17-21 FEB 2010

What's more fun then a barrel of monkeys? To Tinky Winky, a bin full of Olympic mascots. We arrived in Whitehorse just as the Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race was ending.It starts in Fairbanks and ends in Whitehorse.
This is my "time travel" shot...vintage train station with futuristic transportation.
I was hoping to photograph the aurora borealis but it turns out it is a lot like whale watching...you pay your money and take your chances. They come in cycles, and this was a low period. This is what I saw...the moon.
We dressed in rented outfits, rode out to the woods, and had the choice of sitting in an over-heated tent cabin (sometimes filled with too many people)...
sit around a campfire...
or stand in the snow waiting for the show, which never appeared. The second night I got bored and decided to play with making ghost pictures.
I had done this with film, 30 years ago and was curious if I could do it with a digital capture. Basically, you put your camera on a tripod, make a timed exposure in a dark place and then have a person walk through the scene, with a small amount of light hitting them. There are two heads but one body.
Even without the Northern Lights, there were picture-postcard images everywhere.
TW with the S.S.Klondike, one of the largest sternwheelers that used to frequent the area.
The MacBride Museum.
Skyscraper Trading Post.
Yukon Wildlife Preserve.




TW didn't mind playing with dead animal parts...
...and neither did Kate.
I was getting into the shapes and textures.


While everyone else took a dip in a large outdoor swimming pool called the Takhini Hotsprings, I went looking for more nature shots.

TW gets too friendly with the moose head in the hotel lobby.
The only R.C.M.P. we saw.
We loved the Frostbite Music Festival so much that we skipped the third night of sky gazing to listen to more live music. I wouldn't let Tinky Winky hang out with any of the musicians after what happen last summer when she ran off with a flat picking banjo strumming bluegrass player (see May 17, 2009) and was gone for over three months. But I did let him visit with this saloon hall lady.
Saturday night turned colder and when we went walking between music venues (held in different buildings) I inhaled some very cold air and instantly remembered why I never regretted leaving Minnesota. The next morning I saw this meter which was just what my lungs felt like the night before.
But with the cold also comes beauty.

The Last Leaf.

Snow Adventure – 01 FEB 2010

There was a break in the weather, so I decided to drive up to the cabin to pick up some winter cloths for my up-coming trip to Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada...yes, I am crazy enough to visit the Yukon in February. I was not prepared for what I found...or should I say couldn't find, such as the water shut off valves. The red circle indicates where I dug out a hole in the snow, looking for it.
There are two shut off valves: one for inside the cabin and one for the outside water. I found one opening and had to use a hair dryer to melt the ice in order to insert the water key. To my surprise it was the right valve. If the neighbor had not been using our driveway for an extra parking spot, I would not have been able to attempt an overnight visit.

I should have known I was going to run into some challenges because the drive up the mountain was very claustrophobic. The snow was piled so high that there was no shoulder to the highway. It felt like driving through one very long tunnel. The streets in Sugarloaf were even more restricted as the two lane side roads only had clearance for one car. This is the snow pile made by the snowplows at the end of our street.

On the side of the house the dog nearly jumped the fence into the neighbor's yard by just walking over the snow.

This was Rudy's first snow experience and he seemed to love it.
The back deck was filled with snow...literally!
After two nights, it was time to return home before the next storm. The radio said the current snow levels hadn't broken the record set in 1979. That would have been the first winter we had the cabin and I don't remember snow this high, so it must be colder temperatures which have kept the snow from melting. In the past, we've driven up on a clear day, had beautiful, large snow falls and then seen it all melt away in time to drive home without chains.