Wednesday, June 8, 2016

The road from Nugget City to Whitehorse continued to charm us with scenery. There were a few long stretches of gravel due to construction but the road was good the majority of the way.
Our first full day in Whitehorse we visited the Fish Ladder and the Yukon Wildlife Preserve. The Fish Ladder is operated by Yukon Fish and Wildlife and was interesting. Basically it consists of chambers of sequentially connected Yukon River water that increase in elevation allowing the fish to travel from below the dam to above the dam. Of course the reverse is also possible as the Chinook Salmon migrate from the Bering Sea to the Upper Yukon region to spawn. We were told by one of the employees that the Chinook Salmon makes the longest salmon run in the world.
Fish Ladder facing up river
Inside there are several viewing windows and a live camera feed. They actually count all the male and female salmon as they migrate. We were informed that the salmon were not good to eat once they start the migration because they starve themselves.
 We saw a few Grayling and one baby Chinook. The salmon making the migration are still in Alaska and only travel about 30 km per day. The following map shows where they were yesterday.

Next are a few of the animals we saw at the Wildlife Preserve.
Elk with velvet on antlers
Mule Deer
Mountain Goats
Musk Ox
The Musk Ox supposedly has fir eight times warmer than wool. They do not have any blood vessels in the lower portion of their legs. This enables them to endure long periods standing on ice without loosing body heat. As seen from the photo they are quite ugly and we were told very unfriendly. The author has no plans to pet one.
Arctic Fox
Today we are off to a sled dog training facility and will report on that later.

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