Winter in Whitehorse.

This really is a fascinating place. Moe and I have had many discussions on why people choose to live up here. My description of some of the views being “bleak and desolate” was met with scorn. Her description was more positive – “raw and powerful”.

It truly is a beautiful place, and the weather is not really at its best, as it has remained overcast, so I imagine it can be absolutely stunning in clear conditions. But to me, life here just seems to be an endless battle against the cold.

The generator has to be brought inside the cabin when it isn’t in use, otherwise it probably won’t start. The fire has to be stoked before going out anywhere so that the cabin is still warm when you get back. A pot of water sits permanently on top of the stove – other than the gas stove-top, it is the only supply of hot water. And the car has to be plugged in to warm up – it has a special electric engine warmer – about half an hour before starting it, so that the oil isn’t like sludge in the bottom of the engine.

But despite the challenges it is still great fun. I try to remember to bring wood in for the heater when I venture to the outhouse. And I remembered that we had to stop to fill the seven water cans at the local community hall on the way back from town.

The town itself is small but busy, and has a great choice of coffee shops and nice restaurants, although many are closed for the holiday season.

I have had a busy few days here. I have been swimming at night in an outdoor pool, heated by hot spring water. It was about minus 25 outside, so wet hair froze solid within a couple of minutes, and had to be regularly defrosted by dipping it back in the water.

Yesterday I went into the local CBC radio station for an interview for a local chat show. I managed to record part of the interview from the “and finally” section on the local news, and left the machine recording afterwards, and managed to catch the local area weather too. I am quite amused by the weather forecasts here, particularly when they predict “a high today of minus 31 (degrees Centigrade)” !!

Press the “Play” button below to listen to the short interview clip and the weather report for today. The thermometer outside, near the outhouse shows -29 deg C, but is predicted to fall tonight!!

After the radio interview, I was asked if I could do a piece for CBC TV too, and headed back into town for another interview today, which was shown at 6pm this evening on the local Canadian news programme.

Once again, what a great adventure this all is!

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