Our four bedroom home (or 3-bedroom/one office) is located on 1 hectare of land. Dowtown Whitehorse is 15 minutes by car, 40 by bike (ok. ok, 50 minutes if you have a head wind). A king-size Tempurpedic bed should ensure the comfort of those who have sore backs or hips. Single beds are available in two rooms a queen bed can be placed in the office/4th bedroom or in a living area, depending on privacy and number of people.
There are 2 1/2 bathrooms, a kitchen stocked for all kinds of meals (sushi-rolling and cooking tortillas on a comal). Large, triple-pane windows offer a view of the stars, mountains, forest, sun or clouds. A 28x4-foot deck offers kids on scooters a chance to pick up some speed, and the adults enough room to safely sip their drinks.
There are upstairs and downstairs "living rooms"--or hockey room downstairs if you wish. A cedar-wood playground with slide, monkey bars swings & fort may engage the children, but maybe only if you agree to "push". Cable tv offers access to that universe and to high speed internet. Fresh well water will give you the most shocking trip through the sprinkler and the most magnificent glass of water you could ask for.
You can coax the kids to keep up with piano practice on our upright while the dishes get washed in the dishwasher and another load of laundry is done in the laundry room. The cat will demand some stroking and when let out, will happily pounce on the grass or the mouse trying to hide in the grass. You, of course, will lie in the hammock under the midnight sun.
Our "neighbourhood" includes @ 60 1-hectare lots. We have access to the TransCanada Trail (in its more "rugged" state) for skiing, mountain biking, hiking, berry picking. The neighbours are often transient wildlife (a fox this winter) sometimes coyotes, & bears briefly in the spring. Aurora borealis may be your most visible neighbour, Aug-March.
The elements aside, for the most part the immediate neighbourhood is made up of professionals (the Yukon has the highest proportion of post-graduate degrees per capita in Canada, & the lowest disparity in wages between men & women), many "empty nesters", others with kids. The Yukon River is nearby, & Wolf Creek, within walking distance. The historic White Pass railway (no longer active) built to bring gold rush immigrants to the gold fields, runs through the over-grown bush 1/2 km away. A 15-minute drive (40 mins on bike) downtown Whitehorse (pop. 25,000), offers modern ammenities, from all the ingredients for sushi to sports, arts, adventure & science camps for the kids & extraordinarily intimate world-class artistic performances. Ah yes, & the Canada Games Centre--built to house the first Canada Games north of 60--a world-class athletic facility.
The wider neighbourhood is entirely wilderness, with whitewater & flat water kayaking & canoeing; hiking, skiing; boating, fishing; ratio of dogs to people? 5:1. Oh, the Alaska coast is 90 minutes away. Modern treaties with First Nations--85% concluded.
Diverse artistic/cultural community, including many summer festivals attract performers to the refuge of "the north". Audiences are richly rewarded with intimate "jam sessions". The Yukon is a bit of a polyglot--young people converge from around the world & take advantage of summer employment & "the experience"--Yukon residents welcome this infusion as they will welcome you. Drawbacks: create you own culinary delight from the bounty of the land, waters and grocery; almost zero architecture or public transit.
We are a family of four--two parents (moonlighting as a lawyer and resource policy analyst) and a 7-yr old boy/hockey (soccer??) dude and 5-yr old girl. Parenting tips on temper tantrums always welcome.
We have invested in taking almost a year to spend learning and travelling as a family in Italy (most of our time), Slovakia, Czech Republic, Vienna, Budapest, London & Scotland; August 2008-June 2009. Our roots and passions guide us in these directions.
We intend to learn Italian (the language of Dante Alighieri, non?) and recognize the kids will quickly outstrip us. We are English and Spanish-speakers with rudiments of French.