Day 28 Mileage 8596.4 travelled 232.9 kms today from gravel pit near Fort Nelson entering the Northwest Territories to Fort Liard free recreation campground. There is a fire ban in effect here so no fires tonight even though they have free firewood. Nice recreation site with 12 free campsites, so far only two RVs here, pit toilets, fire rings and tables alongside Hay Lake just outside of Liard. We filled up in Fort Liard today for $1.90/litre so one of the cheapest so far. Our NWT experience is just beginning to unfold, drove through construction on the gravel section after crossing into the NWT. The drive from Fort Nelson has been beautiful spotting lots of buffalo along the way. Highway to the NWT is fantastic, BC really does have good highways. Very relaxing drive after the Alaska Highway, met probably four other vehicles in the 200 kms and were passed by two gravel trucks. At Hay Lake there is a lot of ground clover and I have never seen so many bumble bees, the ground is alive with them…perhaps no crop spraying here.
Fort Liard is at the junction of the Liard and Petitot rivers and has a population of around 600. The area’s relatively warm climate earned it the nickname of “Tropics of the Territories”. The South Slavey Dene have resided here for many generations hosting traditional gatherings and passing down oral history. They traded with Euro-Canadians in the 18th century and later the Hudson’s Bay Company.
Day 29 Mileage 5,889.5 kms today we traveled 293.1 kms. We drove from Fort Liard on Highway 7 or the Liard Trail to the Junction of Highway 1 which was all gravel. We then took Highway 1, a paved highway to the ferry on the Liard River and crossed to Fort Simpson. It rained all night in Fort Liard and throughout the morning and the mosquitoes were terrible. We drove close to 90 kms on muddy roads then into sunshine for the rest of the day, temp around 20C. We will spend the night at Fort Simpson Territorial Campground. Very nicely kept with pit toilets and showers that were closed, there are only a few of us here tonight. Fort Simpson is known as the “Gateway to the Nahanni” since it is used for a lot of people as a starting point for trips to the mountains by boat or by plane. Fort Simpson is known by the Dene as Lidlii Kue (“place where they come together”). Fort Simpson has a population of 1202 residents a community first formed as Fort of the Forks, a Northwest Company fur trading site. In 1882, their rivals the Hudson’s Bay Company built a trading post here and was named after George Simpson, Governor of what was known then as Rupert’s Land. There is a lot more history to be found here for those interested or just enjoy the beauty of the wilderness. Extra note when we were checking out and paid for our campsite at Fort Simpson the camp host gave us a very nice NWT lantern and a collapsible pail and some very helpful information on the NWT which was very good of him. A reader and truck camper traveller who lives in Fort Simpson also was very helpful in providing some local information and I thank him for that. The community information centre also provided us with potable water for free. On the topic of water I bought the blue carbon filter to fill with and it has been a great investment as it removes taste of chlorinated water and purifies it somewhat.
Day 30 Mileage 6,217.1 kms travelled 327.5 kms today from Fort Simpson to Fort Providence. We travelled Highway 1 on pavement to the Jean Marie River where it tuned into gravel until the junction of Highway 3 to Fort Providence. As per the course in our travels there was construction on 1 and on 3 the road was extremely rough on Highway 3 into Fort Providence and very dusty. On the way we stopped at Sambaa Deh Falls flowing through a deep rocky canyon. On the way we crossed the Deh Cho Bridge which is a 1.6 km-long cable stayed bridge across the Makenzie River that replaced the ferry. We will stay the night at the NWT Park here outside of Fort Providence right on the Majestic Mackenzie River cost $29.50 with power and shower facilities, time to charge up everything and shower. The campground was all pull through and all sites electric and very well kept with nice shower facilities and washrooms. I fueled up today here for $2.269/litre. Fort Providence has a population of 797 people and is situated 5 kms down an access road west of Highway 3. The community is located on the banks of the Mackenzie River. A major landmark in the community is the Roman Catholic Our Lady of Fort Providence church.
That’s it for this post, hope the ride was not too rough but glad to have you along. Next post our journey to Yellowknife and the end of the road. Subscribe to be notified of new posts it shows your interest and any questions on travel will be answered best way is to email me at email@example.com
Have a great day and those still travelling may the wind be at your back….see you down the road….Gerry and Charlotte