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The Book, the Exhibition, the Stories behind the Images / by Ron and Lori Erwin

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Tombstone Viewpoint

On our last night up the Dempster Highway in the Yukon we limped back into Tombstone Territorial Park with the van's low-gas alarm on and a flat tire. We had failed in our attempt to take the highway all the way to its north end across the Arctic Circle into the Northwest Territories. In fact we only made it about 100km south of the halfway point and its gas station before a guy in a truck told us to turn around. The road was just too rough due to washouts. At camp while Ron changed the tire, we decided we would head back down to Dawson the next morning. But first we hoped to get one more chance to photograph the scene from the Tombstone Viewpoint in sweet morning light.

By 5:30 am the next morning we had a glimmer of hope. So we left the nearly out of gas van sitting at our campsite, grabbed the gear and hiked the 2.5 kms up the mountain road to the Tombstone Viewpoint. Our speed up that hill seemed in direct proportion to the rate that the sun peeked over the mountains to the east and lit up the opposite mountains. On flat land I'm normally known as the fast walker between us. But Ron really wanted that shot! With his long legs he ran up that road leaving me in his dust. I struggled along with my short legs knowing he would need some of the gear in my pack. I kept pushing and managed to puff into the viewpoint a few minutes behind him. We were even in time to see light on Tombstone Mountain off in the distance in the valley between the Tombstone Range (left) and the Cloudy Range (right).

The light didn't last long. It was cloudy and threatening rain once again as we walked back down the mountain road to our campsite. The other still-sleeping campers were unaware that there had even been a moment of nice light. Timing is everything!

More about our trip up the Dempster Highway see my blog posting: "How Many Roads?"

- Lori Erwin

Last updated: January 05 2013 Website © 2011-2014 Ron Erwin Photography
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