Journal of Dan T. Cook - Fly Fishing the Globe
Traveling 75,000 miles around the world in search of fish and friendship.
Yukon River Trip
Wednesday, June 7, 2006 - Day 1
I waited all day for a UPS package to arrive. I had ordered some extra latches for the dory lids on Monday and had them shipped “Express Overnight.” I assured all the local naysayers that they would indeed show up on Tuesday. “UPS ships WORLDWIDE overnight!” I said. “Not in the Yukon” was the retort. Well….they didn’t even arrive on Wednesday. I decided to get on the river anyway. Sandor would send them up to Carmacks to be waiting for me when I arrived in 5-6 days.
We dumped the dory in to the river at the Rotary Peace Park. I began to untangle the anchor and anchor line at the rear of the boat. The anchor dropped from my hands and in to the water. “No worries” I thought, it’s attached to the rope. As the anchor disappeared in to the murky water without a tug on the line, it became apparent that it was not. Luckily, I was still at the boat ramp and the water was only 3 feet deep. Then I found that one of the oarlocks didn’t fit completely in to the oarlock stand. Perhaps this is why people do “gear checks” BEFORE the trip begins.
I couldn’t have asked for better weather in which to start the trip. It must have been near 70 degrees. Many of the Yukoners were having difficulty coping with the “heat.” It felt great to me. With the late start, I hoped to row the 20 miles to Lake Laberge. After a couple of miles, my familiarity with the boat returned, as well as my rowing stroke. Unexpectedly, the first four miles of Lake Laberge is extremely shallow. As in 6-12 inches shallow. I wanted to get clear of this area before camping so I rowed another 4 miles and anchored near Joe’s Creek. After a rather shaky start, I ended the day confident and optimistic.