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Chilkoot Trail


The Wild Yukon!

A backpacking trip of a lifetime! Originally used as a trade route to the interior by the native Tlingit tribes, the Chilkoot trail later provided passage for tens of thousands of gold seekers during the Klondike Gold Rush. Today, this 53km hike provides an exceptional opportunity for modern-day adventurers to retrace the route of the Klondike stampeders.
From tidal flats at Dyea, Alaska, the lush path through temperate rainforest rises up through the sub-alpine, before ascending the granite boulders of the “Golden Stairs” and over Chilkoot Pass into Canada. The trail continues on to Lake Bennett by way of a rugged alpine landscape leading to a more gentle boreal forest, bejewelled with picturesque sub-alpine lakes. Finally we finish in the world's smallest desert. Your mind will be blown as 100+ year old artifacts from the Klondike stampede still line the trail, reminding hikers of the historical significance of the trail.

Dates and Bookings

Adventure Dates 2021:

  • We have decided not to run this program in 2021 due to the uncertainly of when the USA and Canadian border will open. If you are interested in being notified of when we run this adventure again email us and we will add you to a list
Adventure Rates:
  • Participants:

    CAD $1900 + applicable taxes

  • Information package will be given upon registration
  • We value small groups - limited to 6 adventurers
  • This is a co-ed group

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Itinerary and Gear

Planned Itinerary

  • (Pre-Trip) Day 0:
    Meet the group at the Coast High Country Inn, Whitehorse at 7 pm. We will make sure everyone has everything they need, introduce the group, laugh lots, and distribute the group gear.
  • Day 1:
    We'll wake up full of energy and start our adventure to the trailhead. In the morning we will board a motor coach in Whitehorse for a trip along the scenic South Klondike Highway to Fraser, BC, where we will connect with the world famous narrow gauge railway. Our 45 km rail excursion will descend over the White Pass Summit, the other of the two routes stampeders used during the gold rush. No verbal description can do justice to the spectacular train ride back into Skagway, Alaska. Here we will have our trail orientation at the trail center and catch our shuttle to the trailhead. Getting a later start, we will only hike 8km to Finnegan's Point - 100m elevation gain, approx. 3hrs hiking.
  • Day 2:
    After breakfast our adventure continues through the rain forest. Depending on water levels there can be a lot of creek crossings as we'll follow the banks of the Taiya River. Be prepared to get wet feet! This is a pleasant day with some easy and some fairly steep but short climbs. We will rest our heads at Sheep Camp - 12.9km, 200m elevation gain, approx. 6hrs hiking.
  • Day 3:
    Today is the day! This is where we fully experience the craziness of the prospectors. We will leave very early taking in the views of glaciers and mountains. The travel is pretty smooth until we reach "the scales." After the scales we will pick our way through a giant talus field, called the "Golden Staircase," bouldering hopping our way up to the Chilkoot Pass. As we climb we will think about the stampeders who had to do this stretch more than 20 times! When we reach the Chilkoot pass we cross the border between Alaska and Canada. Wahooo! As we descend your breath will be taken away as we cross streams, hike along turquoise lakes, and stare at hanging glaciers in the distance. We will certainly be happy when we are able to rest for the night at Happy Camp - 12.1km, 700m elevation gain, approx. 8-12hrs hiking.
  • Day 4:
    After a long day the previous day we will sleep in and rest our legs. Fulled by the sense of accomplishment we will enjoy smooth hiking, large vistas, gentle grades. Our route will meander alongside beautiful mountain streams and lakes as we descend to to Lindeman City. Lindeman City is a historic location where many stampeders spent the winter of 1897-98 building boats, intended to transport them and their supplies the 885 km downstream to Dawson City and the Klondike - 8.8km, 200m elevation loss​, approx. 4-5hrs hiking.
  • Day 5:
    Today we'll continue our trek to Lake Bennett, more scenic, sweeping vistas await us along the way. At Bennett, there are Parks Canada exhibits, as well as a gold-rush era church that served as Bennett’s community center. Bennett had an estimated population of 10,000 to 20,000 during the winter of 1897-98. When the ice cleared from Lake Bennett in May of 1898, some 7,000 boats were launched by gold seekers hoping to reach Dawson. Little did they know that the good claims were already taken! We will spend the night here - 11.3km, approx. 4-5hrs hiking.
  • Day 6:
    At Bennett, the original White Pass & Yukon Route Railroad Depot services hikers as a way back home. We board the White Pass and Yukon Route Railroad for its 11 a.m. departure to Carcross. We will have time to explore Carcross before reboarding the motor coach back to Whitehorse where we will become reacquainted with hot showers, soft beds, and a variety of food and beverage options.

    *Trip enters both Canada and the United States. Guests much have a valid passport to clear U.S. and Canadian Immigration. Canada and U.S. requires Visas from citizens of some countries, list can be provided.

 

Level of Difficulty

This trip chllenging and not for the faint of heart! Rough terrain, boulder fields, and long days create this trip. Physical training is required prior to completing this trip. Here is a 6 week hiking fitness program to help set you on the right path. However, we also recommend partaking in our Wellness Fitness Series to help prepare your body for the physical demands of this backpack. You should have the ability to carry ~40 lbs for up to 8 hours.

With the right physical preparation you will love this trip! The Yukon will steal your heart!

6 week hiking fitness program      Hiking Fitness Series  

Have questions swirling around, don't hesitate to contact me. I am here to help!

 

Gear, Food and Lodging

Included:

  • Backcountry skills learning
  • Wilderness pass for each night
  • Tents for camping
  • Amazingly delicious food from the evening of day 1 to lunch on the last day
  • The expertise from an ACMG Guide
  • An on trail physiotherapist

  • All group gear - stoves, pots, food storage materials, water treatment, sunblock, bug spray
  • All safety equipment - bear spray, first aid kit, emergency communication device, and tarp
  • Roundtrip transportation to the trailhead from Whitehorse

Participants must provide:

  • Accommodations the night before getting on the trail - recommend booking a room at the Coast High Country Inn (We have set aside a couple rooms for the first couple of guests)
  • Transportation to Whitehorse
  • Breakfast and Lunch of day 1 and supper on the last day
  • Personal Gear (Can be arranged for an additional fee)
    Personal Gear List  
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