Day 1: Thursday
Arrival at the airport in Whitehorse. We will pick you up and bring you to a downtown Hotel. The City is already vibrant with Yukon Quest atmosphere and numerous dog trucks are to be seen all over town. Each participant gives a little speech and draws her or his official starting number. It is a great time to socialize and get to see the Mushers live. An usually “all you can eat” buffet will finish of this nice evening. Overnight in Hotel. Included: (D)
Day 2: Friday
Free morning in Whithorse. Race officials will prepare the starting chute for the Yukon Quest right in front of the River View Hotel on First Avenue. There are many mushers, handlers and Officials in town and busy with last minute preparations. Not far from Whitehorse are the Takhini Hot Springs where we will drive in the afternoon for a nice soak, followed by a visit of the Wildlife Preserve. Return to Whitehorse and there is live musik in many of the bars in town this evening, free evening. Overnight in Hotel
Day 3: Saturday
You will meet up with your guide in the morning. This is the big day the mushers have been training and waiting for. The adrenaline runs high and all the teams are prepared for the start, the sleds are packed, the dogs are massaged and bootied up, till if finally says: “three, two, one, goooo”. After the start the teams drop onto the Yukon River before crossing under the Takhini River bridge, where we will be waiting to cheer them on. Now it is time to meet your own Huskies. We drive to the base camp on Fish Lake. Here you will move into one of the cozy cabins or a nice double room in the main lodge. The dogs are waiting to meet you. We show you how to handle and harness the dogs. After taking care of the dogs we enjoy a hearty meal. You might want to take a sauna or just relax on the couch beside the stove, and of course listen to the dogs howling outside. Overnight in Cabins in Base Camp. Included: (D).
Day 4: Sunday
This will be your first day of own mushing. We practice once again how to harness the Huskies. Once that is accomplished we hook them up the sled and the Adventure begins. The dogs will pull us on a trail east of the Ranch. We are continuously climbing in elevation as we are heading on an abandoned mining road on MacIntyre Mountain. On occasional stops we can enjoy unprecedented scenery of the Costal Mountain with Fish Lake nestled deep in the valley. Return to the Lodge Overnight at Sky High Valley Ranch. Included: (B), (L), (D).
Day 5: Monday
Today we head towards beautiful Bonneville Lakes, west of the Ranch. The trails are narrower with some challenging up and downs. The Coastal Mountains are always in view to the South and West. Part of the trip we travel above tree line and easily cover between 20 and 30 km. Slowly, a new feeling of life will creep in. In harmony with the running rhythm of your team you will enjoy nature in a way you've never experienced before. Overnight at Sky High Valley Ranch. There is a gravity fed indoor shower waiting for you in the main lodge. Included: (B), (L), (D).
Day 6: Tuesday
Now you leave behind the last remnants of civilization and head out to a real wilderness. The trail follows Fish Lake and climb and heads into the Costal Range to the south. After aprox 2.5 hrs of running time we reach our trapper's wall tent camp at dry creek. Overnight in Wall tent. Included: (B), (L), (D).
Day 7: Wednesday
From the wall tent camp, weather permitting we will make a run to the top of the mountain above tree line to Ptarmigan flats where there is a good chance of seeing large flocks of these beautiful white birds and having some wonderful sledding on miles of wind blown snowy hill tops, before heading back to the wall tent camp. Included: (B), (L), (D).
Day 8: Thursday
After a musher's breakfast, we will start for our mushing back to Sky High Valley Ranch. The dogs pull us steady westbound with the Coastal Mountains in plain view ahead of us. Way too soon we return to civilization and most of all, you have to leave your new friends, the dogs. We try to get home early, as in the afternoon we drive to Dawson City, a 500 km drive, arriving late at night in the Gold Rush Town. The Checkpoint is not far from the Hotel in the Visitor Center. Under normal race circumstances the first mushers have arrived in Dawson. It is hard to predict the progress of the race. If the pace is really fast, the front runner will prepare to leave through out the night. The checkpoint is the Visitor Reception Center downtown. Overnight in Hotel. Included: (B), (L).
Day 9: Friday
This day we experience first hand the checkpoint atmosphere of Dawson City. There will be Mushers arriving right on Front Street all day, some only minutes, others hours apart. They rest their dogs in the “dog camp” across the frozen Yukon River in the Governement Campground. The frontrunner will already be leaving on a 150 mile stretch to Eagle Alaska, which has no road access in the winter. Visit of Diamond Tooth Gerties Casio in the evening. Overnight in Hotel.
Day 10: Saturday
In the morning we have time to spend in Dawson to watch the mushers embark on the next leg of their journey. Around noon, we start heading back towards Whitehorse, a 6 hr road trip along the scenic Klondike Highway, with stops in Pelly Crossing and at the frozen Five Finger Rapids of the Yukon River. Arrival in Whitehorse in the evening and overnight in Hotel.
Day 11: Sunday
The hotel van (or taxi) brings you to the airport for your southbound flight … Or better yet, complete your Yukon winter experience, by joining another tour offered.
- Transfer from and to Whitehorse/ Dawson City;
- Accommodation in Whitehorse (3 night double room);
- Hotel accommodations in Dawson City (2 nights double room);
- Accommodation in cabins (4 nights double room) or heated tent outpost camps (2 nights, group accommodations);
- All meals including non-alcoholic beverages, (except day 2, day 3 breakfast and lunch, day 8 dinner, day 9-11);
- Use of personal sled and 3 to 6 Huskies;
- Yukon Quest (or Iditarod Presentation) one night from accomplished musher (not during race season);
- Musher Certificate after Tour;
- Winter Boots included, all other equipment see below;
- Entry Fee Takhini Hot Springs
- Yukon Quest Banquet Ticket.
- Alcoholic beverages (we buy jointly before the tour);
- Winter clothing rental of warm Northern Outfitters Jacket, Pants and sleeping bag $ 25 each item, mitts $ 10 payable upon arrival in cash or credit card;
- Meals in restaurants day 2, day 3 breakfast and lunch, day 8 dinner, day 9-11;
- All expenses of personal nature.
We supply you with the best equipment possible, teach you all the important aspects of mushing and prepare the trails as good as possible. To participate you must be healthy, enjoy working with dogs and have a good team spirit. Dog sledding is a comparable physical activity to cross-country skiing, so you should be in relatively good physical shape. We point out, that unforeseeable circumstances such as weather conditions, extreme temperatures, condition of the group or illness of the dogs may force us to change this itinerary. The safety of our guests takes precedence and our decisions are final. The camps have no power or telephone, showers are of basic gravity fed nature and not available in tent camp. You will be required to sign a “release of claims, and waiver of liability form” prior to the departure of this tour.
Possible add-on daytrips:
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Canada Yukon Outdoor: Land Rambler Dogsledding
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