No Throwing Fish.

Monday, June 30, 2008


There are a lot of bugs. A whole lot.

I'm starting to get used to them, though. Just like an african child.

This update is from Dease Lake, BC - where a liter of Ocean Spray is $7.99.

Poor internet here, so no photos today.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Magic Bus Day

A lot of people compare this trip to "into the wild." One of the things going on in that kid's story was the "magic bus" which served as his shelter while he was in the alaskan bush.

Last night, I was in my car outside Houston BC's chamber of commerce, borrowing their internet, when a white former school bus pulled up. The driver, a 22 year old canadian stoner and aspiring musician, asked me the password for the internet (my face was illuminated by the unmistakable computer screen blue glow). He called the bus his "summer home," and would be staying the night in that parking lot, because his bus' headlights didn't work.

Only drove from Houston to Hazelton today, just shy of 150 km. Stopped at a farmers' market in Smithers, and was surprised no old people crashed into it.

Those of you looking at where I am on a map are probably thinking "that isn't the alaska highway." I've decided to take the Stewart-Cassiar. I'm on highway 16 right now, officially known as the "Yellowhead Highway" and unofficially known as the "highway of tears" because of the large number of hitchhikers who've been murdered on it. Good thing I'm not hitchhiking.

Friday, June 27, 2008

holy shit, bears.

I am a talented videographer who has taken the following videos

Bears (I hope pointing the camera the wrong way is excusable, there were three of them)

Crow eating frog (graphic?)

Seagulls are predictable

Road conditions

Also there are a couple more pictures here, nothing too special though.

Houston, BC

632km from my last update. Things have been a bit less interesting on this part of the trip. Prince George, despite calling itself "british columbia's northern capital," is pretty lame. 70,000 people and nothing but big box stores and chain restaurants. Quesnel, though, had a neat museum. It's interesting how history around here is written with first nations people in it, like "The Haida nation was here prior to Canadian colonization" instead of US history which tends to read more like "we claimed the empty lands of Oregon."

I drove past Lac La Hache, and don't have a clue how to pronounce it.

I did come across some opinions about my trip in a bar in Prince George. Person A suggested I go east to Newfoundland instead of to Alaska, though Person B (after person A left for the restroom) suggested I stick with my original plan, if only so I wouldn't have to drive through the canadian midwest.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A lot of driving

Drove from Pemberton to 100 Mile House yesterday. That's 275 km, and possibly more than I've driven the entire trip. I passed by a couple of small towns, Lillooet and Clinton, which didn't really have a whole lot going on. Shortly afterward, I came across a sign reading "Chasm." NOW YOU'RE TALKIN'.

I camped last night, at a campground which was deceptively far from where the "camping, turn right" sign led me to believe. Only about 25 miles after the signs saying "this way" did camping finally exist.

Attempting to do laundry today, I repeatedly failed at inserting a canadian $10 into a change machine, only to have someone instruct me to insert the bill face-up. I believe I lost about a thousand cultural literacy points at that moment.


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Things Happen In Stanley Park

I spent four or five hours walking around Stanley Park on Tuesday, great place. Photos here.

This place has an unnaturally high population of animals - all of which are very accustomed to humans, and being fed by humans. I'm sure it's these supplements to their diet allowing so many animals to survive there. Everywhere you looked there would be animals asking for handouts. I could not resist the cuteness of these guys though, and so here's a video of me feeding a raccoon (pardon my inane commentary).

I was walking along one of their trails, and I saw a woman in her 70s or 80s digging around in some bushes, and as I'm headed in that direction, she falls over into them. It was an odd sight, she fell like a tree which had just been cut down - slowly, entirely in one direction, and without any motion or attempt to catch herself. I checked on her to see if she was ok or needed help, and she responded by showing me a styrofoam cup full of salmonberries, which miraculously hadn't spilled. She then resumed picking berries from her newly discovered prone position.

Later that day I went to the Capilano Suspension Bridge, which is neat, but pricey - $32 or so for an adult ticket and parking. It's cool to walk around on their bridge which is suspended over a river, but it requires walking around the entire population of British Columbia since they're all on that bridge as well. I took a video of the bridge right before closing, when it was less crowded. The camera I was using has image stabilization so, the wobbliness of the bridge might not come across so well.

The Sea to Sky Highway is getting the holy crap torn out of it, I imagine in preparation for the Olympics. This results in sections where the entire highway is one lane - they have stop/slow people guiding lines of 30 or 40 cars through these sections, meaning I was stopped for ten or fifteen minutes at a time. I did get some neat pictures from out my car window while stopped, though.

Today I stopped by Nairn Falls. While it was some cool nature and an impressive waterfall, they fenced off all the "unsafe" parts, which of course are far more interesting. This didn't stop me from finding a way around this fence and scrambling around the forbidden, but awesome, rocky territory.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Goin' up the country

Crossed the border into Canada yesterday. Crossing guard didn't ask for my ID or birth certificate or anything. This is part of the reason I took the Alder Grove crossing instead of Peace Arch.

On the way up through Lynden, there was a guy holding a sign saying something like "jesus is the way." This, and the stink of cow manure, gives a person a good idea of the kind of town Lynden is.

I stopped at a bar and grill kind of place last night. Struck up a conversation with the bartender, and one of the first things he talks about how great his weed is, and whether I wanted to buy some. This gives you an idea of the kind of place "Van" is. It makes sense that's the nickname for this city, though I hadn't heard anyone call it that until then.

Pictures here:

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

This blog's title

Apple changed the name of their ".mac" service to "mobile me." Associated email addresses now end in rather than, so I quickly created the cleverest email address I could muster: "no throwing fish at me, dot com."

I'm often asked how I'll deal with high gas prices.
Gas isn't going to get any cheaper. I might as well take advantage of what I'm sure we will look back on as low gas prices, just as we now see 2004's $2 gas as quite a deal. My car gets something like 25 combined mpg according to the EPA, so it will take about 90 gallons of gas to get from Seattle to Fairbanks. Despite gas costing about $900 round trip, it will be well worth it.

Last day in Seattle

click to enlarge

Friday, June 13, 2008