Dawson City, YT at the quiet pre-tourist time is a largely empty, sleepy town. The people are friendly, and the pace of life is slow. There are no traffic signals, concrete pavements or chain-owned shops to break up the atmosphere of this century old mining town.
I chose to make most of these photos black and white because it suits the character of the place.
Severe subsidence due to melting permafrost is evident in parts of town.
With the snow melting, water pumps are running all day to drain the bodies of water that collect around the town.
The clock on Front Street from the riverside.
The prominent CIBC building has been left to deteriorate for years due to an ownership dispute. It’s now been settled, and restoration is underway.
The SS Keno originally transported metal ore for processing. It’s now a historic site, much like the SS Klondike, and was the last sternwheeler to navigate the Yukon (Whitehorse to Dawson) under its own power in 1960.
A signalling light on the SS Keno.
The Klondike and Yukon converge just south of Dawson; ice on the former has already cleared, but the Yukon remains icy. Meltwater is collecting on the surface, but that doesn’t stop locals from crossing it on foot.
You can place a bet on the day and hour that the “Yukon breakup” of ice will occur every year, in a form of winner-takes-all lottery. Until that happens, there’s no ferry so crossing on foot is the only option.
The restored SS Keno is maintained on the dry dock beside the Yukon river as a tourist attraction.
The ice is thinning, with the river flowing fastest beneath the darker portions of ice.
This rope is attached to a yellow tripod on the ice, and is part of the annual “Break Up” event. When the tripod moves, ice on the Yukon River at Dawson has officially broken up.
Front Street from the CIBC building, with Moosehide slide up on the hill in the background.