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David Raithby… Raising Awareness

Monday, June 15th, 2009 at 02:20 PM

As I mentioned in my earlier post; part of the reason I am embarking on such an epic adventure is to raise awareness of the Three Rivers Region of the northern Yukon. I want to promote its preservation, hopefully bringing increased appreciation for this beautiful landscape and the need to protect it.


The Dempster Highway crosses the continental divide three times; providing a landscape with drastic and brutal elevation changes.  During my journey’s I will be riding at the top of the two major watersheds; the Yukon River and the Mackenzie River watershed. Because I will be at the top of these watersheds, the source where these rivers begin, the water will be the cleanest, coldest, clearest possible and will be abundantly available.

In stark contrast, at the summit of the passes there will be little to no water available. In fact, once I climb up to Eagle Plains, the Dempster follows the continental divide for quite some time and is devoid of a water supply. Before I leave the Ogilvie River, to begin a long, grueling climb, I will have to load up with enough water to last a day and a half; adding a lot of weight to my set up. It is imperative I stay properly hydrated along my ride, and at times it may be difficult to find the necessary water. It’s funny how we as a society readily take a resource that is key to our continued survival for granted.

There is no more water on earth now then there was 10,000 years ago. It is really a wonder that we treat it so casually and give little consideration to the people who live downstream. Part of the reason I am doing this ride is to raise awareness of the need to preserve the health of our water supplies.  There is some excellent information from the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Yukon Chapter website about the Peel River Watershed. Decisions on how this region will be managed are being determined now and the opportunity to share your voice is now. Follow the links from

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