Robert Carlin Donahue Jr. (August 16, 1951 – October 14, 2019), better known as "Buckwheat" Donahue, was an American folklorist, storyteller, entertainer, historian, adventurer, and three-time gold-panning champion, best known for his involvement in many different aspects of life in Alaska's Inside Passage.
Beginning on October 1, 2005, Donahue walked 5,300 miles from Miami, Florida to Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, Canada, paddled a canoe on the Yukon River 2,200 miles to Kotlik, Alaska, then walked the remaining distance to Nome, Alaska as a fundraiser for The Heartbeat Trail, an effort to provide necessary equipment for the Dahl Memorial Clinic, the only hospital within 110 miles of his native Skagway. The adventure took 327 days.
Donahue was the Executive Director of the Skagway Convention and Visitors Bureau. A captivating storyteller, he often entertained crowds of Skagway's many tourists with his tales of the Klondike Gold Rush of 1898. "He is a teller of tales that keep the spirit of Alaska alive," wrote Floridian Larry Ferguson in 2004. "He is a devotee of Robert Service whose poems paint the picture of Alaska during the Gold Rush. And he is, when you see him, the very visage of an Alaskan Sourdough."
In the mid-'80s he founded the Buckwheat Ski Classic, an event which has grown into a popular local ski festival that includes 50K, 25K, and 10K ski races, as well as a 5K snowshoe race.
Donahue was recognizable to television viewers as a frequent guest on many shows and travel documentaries on Alaska. In 2004, he was a featured guest on the History Channel's award-winning documentary Big America: Alaska.