After my adventures in mushroom picking, I was excited to return to the river especially after all that sooty air in the burn. I woke up early with plans to head to a cabin just past Minto.
The day was sunny and hot. The river took me past more mountains and cliffs and islands. I paused for lunch at an old Mounted Police Post and explored three rotting cabins set back from the river.
A few hours later I made it to Minto. There was a road there so I left my kayak to go for a walk and stretch my legs. Found a falling in cabin up on a hill and an informative sign by the road. Minto used to be on the overland trail route which was used to bring mail from Whitehorse to Dawson before air mail service.
I made it to the cabin just after Minto but the structure was up on a cut bank that rose over my head. I couldn’t figure out a way to get my boat up or secure it below, so after a quick dinner I decided it was best to continue down river to hopefully find a more kayak friendly site.
I went by the first site I saw because I felt like paddling just a little further. Big Mistake.
The following miles of river brought me past sheer cliff banks and thick forest. Nowhere to camp. I ended up having to paddle hours on all the way through the “Gates of Hell.”
“The Gates of Hell” is a quick moving section of river that is choked up by islands. No problem for my kayak but a BIG deal for the sternwheelers that used to travel this area. It was not uncommon for two boats to be stuck in the Gates of Hell at once during the gold rush days.
I finally made it to the ghost town of Selkirk to camp. Selkirk used to be an important trading post before the highway was built. The town has been maintained and many of the buildings (cabins, trading post, church, chapel) are still intact and really fun to explore.
I was a little spent but it was lucky to get to camp there. Such a cool place! Pretty busy for a ghost town too. When I arrived, a group of 10 Germans were hanging out around a fire.
Here is a picture of my wonderful Dad during a hike in the Gila after he flew all the way from the east coast to finish up the Grand Enchantment Trail with me last year. I am one lucky kid!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!!!!!! I miss you and can’t wait to see you when I get home!