Whitehorse, 2339 km from Calgary

As the story goes, Whitehorse is named after the violent rapids of the Yukon River. It is said that in the late 1800s the rapids in the area looked a lot like the flowing manes of charging white horses and the city was named for this. There are numerous works of art around town that depict these charging horses.

We made it into the city without any problems; it was so easy that I thought we’d missed something. Whitehorse is definitely not as big as I thought it would be and is roughly the same size as Greenwood (Nova Scotia) complete with PMQs and a military airport.

We are staying with Lynn and Lawrie. They live in a refurbished PMQ, with a hot tub in the backyard, a Zen garden and many very beautiful plants. It was a little weird at first not having everything flying by at 100km per hour but after soaking in the hot tub under the midnight sun we were quite relaxed. I really like Lynn and Lawrie; they are kindred spirits. We talked a lot about travel and they have convinced us to go to Roatan in Honduras rather than to Cuba.

The midnight sun thing is a little weird. We went to bed shortly after and when I woke up and looked at the clock it said 12:30. I was confused: did I sleep for half an hour or was it 12:30 noon the next day. Or had I slept for 24 hours? It was definitely weird. It turns out that the clock had stopped and it was 10am the next day. It is hard to tell when the sun is out all the time.

We spent our first full day in Whitehorse just wandering around and doing touristy things. Whitehorse has Sunday shopping so there was no problem with us wandering around and picking up a few souvenirs. I thought there would be a large price difference (because of the cost of shipping goods to Whitehorse) and some things were expensive (like touristy things) but prices were generally on par with the rest of Canada.

The main strip is really quaint and small; there are lots of outdoor and camp shops. The key places on Main Street are the bookstore and a few galleries. The government definitely has a presence in Whitehorse; I have never seen so many government buildings in my life!