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Whitehorse, Yukon 528a1 | by DB's travels
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Whitehorse, Yukon 528a1

Park outside Whitehorse, Yukon. The rest of this narrative (below) is about the trip and not specific to this picture.


I intended to stay in Whitehorse for a couple of days -- partly just to get the truck cleaned-up and the oil changed, but also because I had a contact there with a gay man.


Whitehorse was somewhat of a surprise -- it's 2800 kilometers (1736 miles) north of Vancouver. Considering its northern location, and after driving through very remote countryside on the way up, I was expecting a fairly rough and tumble city. But, it has the feel of many smaller cities in the Western U.S. -- a nicely maintained, historic downtown with good restaurants and shops, surrounded by suburbia and the standard strip malls and businesses. I've no pictures of the city (my camera had stopped working and was getting fixed), but did later get some pictures of a park just outside town.


My gay connection worked with the Canadian government. His work frequently took him out in the wilderness documenting rituals and working on social issues with native people, and he was also part of a group of gay men who had regular social events in Whitehorse. He invited a group of gay men over for one of the nights that I was there, and about 10 of us sat around talking about gay life in the Yukon. I learned quite a bit in the conversations, but the main thing that I got out of the conversation was a reaffirming of what I had learned in Prince George -- that there is vast distance between the lives and expectations of gay Canadian men in the far north, and the lives of American, urban, gay men.


These experiences in the north served to remind me of two very contradictory impulses in myself -- a strong need to be in less hectic and more 'natural' environments, but an equally strong need for the energy derived from urban life. To some extent I envy those who can settle down in the wilderness, but have to acknowledge that I need 'fixes' of both wilderness and urban.


From 1994 San Francisco - Arctic Ocean camping trip. Scan of an older picture. Best viewed as part of the NW Canada set.


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Taken in June 1994