Day 1: Your guide will pick you up at your accommodations in Whitehorse between 6:30-7:00 am. Please finish eating your breakfast (not included) by this time. Any unnecessary gear or luggage can be left with our staff for lock-up in our secure storage facility. Our drive will take us south from Whitehorse along the Klondike Highway. This is a spectacular drive with views of Tagish and Tutshi Lakes, before climbing through the Skagway Pass. At the summit of the pass we will cross into Alaska. You must have your passport with you for the border crossing!
From there we will descend more than 914 m (3000 feet) to the town of Skagway, situated at the northern terminus of the Lynn Canal, the worlds largest fiord and the northern destination of many who travel Alaska’s famous Inside Passage. We will take a short trip into Skagway to go to the trail office and pick up our permits. Next it is back into the vehicle for a short trip to the town site of Dyea and the Chilkoot trail-head. Our first day of hiking is shorter to accommodate the travel from Whitehorse. Tonight we camp at Finnegan’s Point after backpacking 7.7 km (4.8 miles). Includes: (L), (D).
Day 2: On your way to Sheep Camp today look up into the surrounding mountains. Many of the valleys have spectacular hanging glaciers. We will travel 11 km (7 miles) and gain around 225 m (750 ft). Canyon City campsite, Canyon City Ruins and Pleasant Camp are potential places to rest, snack and explore this day. Once at Sheep Camp we will have a chance to set camp, enjoy dinner, then listen to an entertaining park ranger talk on the trail conditions, history, ecology, wildlife and safety concerns of the area. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 3: This will be an early morning and a big day. Right out of camp you will notice the beginning of the climb to the pass. You will cover approximately 14 km (8.7 miles) and climb around 840 m (2750 feet). Pay close attention to the rapidly changing environment. Today you will hike out of the Pacific Northwest Coastal Forest, through the tree-line and into the alpine tundra. “The scales”, the “golden staircase”, and the international border are today’s highlights.
Depending on the time of year you may experience walking on snow pack that has not melted from the winter’s heavy snow-load in various places near the summit of the pass. From the summit you can look behind you to see the lush coastal forest of Alaska and forward to the alpine tundra of Canada. Take a breath and enjoy your accomplishments. Feel the relief of not having to pack one tone of gear up and over the pass like the stampeder’s had to. Once you arrive in tonight’s camp you will understand and appreciate its name “Happy Camp”. Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 4: Today is an easier day. Relax and enjoy your hike through the treeless alpine tundra to the sub-alpine Borealis forest below. The views are spectacular as you follow Long Lake high up on a ridge and drop down into Deep Lake. Take a moment to rest and soak your feet in the crystal clear water of Deep Lake. For the brave souls this is also a spot for a quick dip in the cold mountain water while others may opt to sit and enjoy the beautiful rapids while having a snack. Our destination tonight is Linderman City. There is an interpretative wall-tent here maintained by Park’s Canada. You can spend some of your leisure time here reading and viewing pictures of the trail's colorful history. You can also get your official “Chilkoot Trail” hiking certificate. Today you will hike 8.8 km (5.5 miles) and make an overall descent of 244 m (800 feet). Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 5: Today is your last full day of hiking. Leaving Linderman City you will climb onto a high Borealis ridge. As the trail continues north you will get glimpses of both Linderman Lake and Bennett Lake. Bennett was the gathering place of over 20,000 stampeders as they built wooden boats from the surrounding forest and waited for the lake ice to go out. Bennett was a large and busy town with streets, hotels, stores, warehouses, and offices. The only remaining building at Bennett is St. Andrews Presbyterian Church. The demise of this town was the completion of the White Pass Yukon Railway to Whitehorse, leaving it economically without purpose. Today you will travel 11.3 km (7 miles). Includes: (B), (L), (D).
Day 6: Rest and enjoy a leisurely morning. Chat with your guide or sip a freshly-brewed coffee and read the interpretive info while waiting for a truly unique trail of 1898 experience. In the early afternoon we will catch the White Pass and Yukon Route Railway to the town of Carcross. The train will travel along the eastern shore of Bennett Lake to Carcross. “Carcross” is a short-form for “caribou crossing”. This was the historic place that the Carcross/Tagish Caribou Herd crossed the Nares River. Your group will be met in Carcross by our driver, but before the trip comes to a close why not take a visit to the Matheson General Store in Carcross and enjoy an ice cream cone for the ride back to Whitehorse. Dinner and hotel not included. Includes: (B), (L).
- All meals included in this itinerary are listed as (B=breakfast, L=lunch, D=dinner)
* June 18-23
* July 26-31
* Aug 16-21 (custom dates available)
- Skill level: Intermediate
- Fishing opportunities: Poor. There is an option to fish on Bennet Lake with a BC fishing license, but this is only for the last day of the trip.
Also see tour packages in:
Canada Yukon Alaska Outdoor: Land Rambler Hiking & Trekking
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