Day 9 In the land of Permafrost


Dawson City

Click Here To See Map

We’re finally in the land of Permafrost.  To be truly accurate, Dawson City is in an area of  “Extensive Discontinuous” permafrost.

Permafrost, or perennially frozen ground occurs when the ground remains at or below 32 degrees for a minimum of 2 years.  There is an amount of soil that thaws and freezes every spring but the lower layers remain frozen.

The permafrost is what’s (partially) responsible for the change in fauna here in Dawson (and as we continue further north).  The Black Spruce has a shallow root system and scan survive being frozen.

Permafrost is extremely sensitive to any soil disturbances.  This had lead to a lot of environmental problems due to road and building construction.  In a few of the pictures below you can see how the houses are tilting.  Despite the attempt to d construction to accommodate for permafrost… the permafrost always wins (or should I say looses because once the ground is thawed by construction the terrain is forever changed.


One of the ways to help prevent the soil from thawing is to build off  the ground.  You can see in the first picture below that there is a ‘lattice’ covered by a faux foundation.  I’ll have more pictures to illustrate this from Inuvik.

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Fishing is a prime source of subsistence living here.





Just a weird fly i saw…..



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From Dawson (fill up with gas and groceries) and finally……


From here on out it will be dirt road

for the next 360 something miles!


End of pavement







Our objective for the night is

Tombstone Territorial Park




This is what I have to look forward to… for the next 3 weeks….

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We settle in for the wet night.  Hoping tomorrow will bring some sun for a full day of exploring the area.  I hope to spend a few days here.

4 thoughts on “Day 9 In the land of Permafrost

  1. Don Cox says:

    I’ve often felt Extensive Discontinuous after a long night of drinking. Good to know there’s a whole region in Canada especially for my ilk!


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