Thursday, May 10, 2018

Our Favorite Yukon Day

Bob and I didn't have to debate our favorite day.  We were unanimous (if two can form unanimity) that the day we spent at the Yukon Wildlife Preserve and Takhini Hot Springs was the best.

Liz knew the route.

The Yukon Wildlife Preserve is a 750 acre park with thirteen species of northern animals.  Some of the animals are bred; some are not.  Some of the animals are rehabilitating and will be returned to the wild; some will remain in the preserve.  Examples of ones that live there permanently are the three-legged lynx and the three-legged fox.  This preserve is contacted when people find injured animals in the wild.  The goal is to release the animals back into the wild, but that is sometimes impossible as the animals wouldn't survive.

Before we started the tour at the Wildlife Preserve, it made sense to use the facilities.  They were newly built and hadn't yet acquired the outhouse smell.

First stop was the elk area.  Lifting the antlers wasn't easy and we think all elk must have perpetual headaches.
Notice the gopher scampering in the next photo.  They were everywhere except for in the fox and lynx compounds.  Apparently there they are eaten just like we would scarf down M&Ms.
We went on a two hour tour and we were the only ones except for our information-filled guide.  People can hike in the preserve and we saw many families ambling along on this sun-filled day.  The benefit of the tour was collecting all the information the guide could give us.
We got up close and personal with some mountain goats.
Better than that, was spotting some mountain goats on a ridge.  We watched for quite some time and saw how cleverly and elegantly they can pick their way over the rocky terrain.
The Preserve has two moose and the moose have an extremely large enclosure so often they aren't seen.  However, this fellow was happy to visit with us from his side of the fence.  I like how this photo contains him, the mountains, and pussy willows.
He seemed to be saying, "pleased to meet you."  
Liz had never seen a moose, but the next day on her trip to Dawson City one crossed right in front of her vehicle.

I didn't get a good photo of the musk oxen, but I was very happy to see them as I hadn't ever seen any before.  They were sleeping in a huddle but two obligingly rose up as we watched.

The preserve has a photo op area.
We drove a little further to have lunch at Bean North.  The day was so lovely that we ate on the deck. 
The resident dog was happy to sit with us.  He didn't realize that we had just been at the Preserve where we learned that we weren't to feed the animals.  Sorry, doggo, no crumbs for you.
Who brings a swimsuit to the Yukon in early May?  Not me so that necessitated a $23 stop at WalMart so I could soak in the Takhini Hot Springs.  It was lovely to be soaky hot whilst looking at snow on the mountains.  Liz definitely has an old-time Hollywood vibe in this photo.  
Elizabeth was here when there was still snow around.  The lobby has photos of people with frozen hair and it reminded us of her synchro days when she would come out of the Weyburn swimming pool.  She wouldn't dry her hair thoroughly before she left the building and she would have "rice hair" which was crunchy and cold.

This day was so special and we loved every minute of it.

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