Alaska '08 day 18, Skagway AK
Sun June 29, 2008
We rode the White Pass and Yukon Route railroad to the summit and back. We had a beautiful clear, warm day. Great views, few clouds. We even saw 2 black bears and some mountain goats way off. 2 cruise ships are in today so they had lots of people riding the train today. It was a 3 hour trip to
the top of White Pass and back. I shot 70 pictures on the trip,
Like it or not the cruise ships saved Skagway and the WP&YR. All the money coming in from the cruise ships has allowed them to restore many buildings along Broadway and allowed the railway to maintain the route and buy more engines and passenger cars. The railway station is like brand new, they must have a dozen diesel engines and 100 passenger cars. It is unfortunate that most of the store are jewelery stores but at least the city buildings are restored. Skagway is nothing like I remember it. There was nothing here in '82, most of the buildings were empty and or falling down.
After the train ride the kids had finished their junior ranger books so we went and got their junior ranger badges. We stopped and got a beer and a t-shirt at the Red Onion. Alaskan IPA Beer is really good! Bought a 6 pack of Alaska IPA at the liquor store across from the WP&YR station.
After dinner we drove out to the goldrush cemetery, along the river behind the railyard. The cemetery is all in the woods on a hillside, I imagine there were no trees there in 1896. Most of the headstones are wooden and the city has no records for 40 or so of the graves. Soapy Smith and Frank Reid's graves are there, Frank Reid's headstone being one of the stone headstones.