The Klondike gold rush
Kluane National Park and Reserve, Chilkoot Trail, S.S. Klondike, Dawson Historical Complex, S.S. Keno, Discovery Claim and Dredge No. 4 National Historic Sites
Distance: 1,695 km round trip from Whitehorse
Venture to Canada’s North! Walk in the footsteps of gold-seekers who made it to the Klondike and feel awe-struck by Kluane, home to 17 out of the 20 highest peaks in Canada. From rugged mountains, to charming northern towns, this 10-day itinerary is one to add to your bucket list.
Distance: 70 km from Whitehorse then take the train to Bennett
Travel back in time and follow the footsteps taken by the dreamers of the era along the Klondike Highway. Explore majestic Carcross, then board the White Pass and Yukon Route train where you can step into the Northern Wilderness of Bennett. Explore the intriguing ruins of the town which lived its glory years during the gold rush.
Recommended accommodation: Camping, Bennett Lake campground
Location: Chilkoot Trail National Historic Site
Ready for another day of discovery? Explore the legendary Chilkoot Trail and walk in the footsteps of gold-seekers who made it to the Klondike region. Board the train back to Carcross. When you arrive, check out a modern-day First Nations commercial village known as The Commons. End your day by returning to Whitehorse, a former gold rush town.
Location: S.S. Klondike National Historic Site
Climb aboard the S.S. Klondike, a restored flagship of the British Yukon Navigation Company sternwheel fleet. From there, stroll the banks of the Yukon River, which will take you to the McBride Museum and the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre. Watch the water and you may see a family of beavers building a lodge. Keep an eye to the sky for circling golden eagles!
Distance: 550 km from Whitehorse
Travel north to Dawson City and check out the magnificent Five Finger Rapids along the way. Take advantage of the midnight sun to wander streets where historical buildings blend into the living town. Imagine thousands of gold-seekers-of-old milling about the busy streets. Feel the history which infuses every aspect of modern life in this iconic gold rush town.
Location: Dawson Historical Complex and S.S. Keno National Historic Sites
Tour the “Paris of the North” and get a behind-the-scenes look at Dawson City, a charming town famous for its gold rush boom! Visit Robert Service’s cabin and bring his poems to life as you learn about the “Bard of the Yukon” and his quirky personality. Board the S.S. Keno. Visit the stately Commissioner’s Residence, or test your mettle in the Escape Room. Can you do it all?
Location: Discovery Claim and Dredge No. 4 National Historic Sites
Explore the Klondike goldfields! Visit the Discovery Claim, follow the trail and stand in the spot where the nugget that started the Klondike gold rush was found in 1896. Visit Dredge No. 4, the enormous machine that dug up creek beds to bring gold to the surface. Despite its fierce efficiency, several million dollars in gold would have been abandoned by miners and researchers at the time of the gold rush.
Day 7 and 8
Kluane National Park and Reserve
Distance: Haines Junction, 850 km from Dawson City, passing through Alaska
Travel along the aptly named Top of the World Highway through Chicken, Alaska and back along the Alaska Highway to Kluane. Don’t forget to stop by the Natural History Museum in Burwash Landing. Stretch your legs on the Soldier’s Summit Trail, located near the Thechàl Dhâl Visitor Centre. Keep your eyes peeled, you might get lucky and catch a glimpse of some Dall sheep. Make a stop to plan the rest of your trip in Haines Junction at the Da Kų Culture Centre.
Recommended accommodation: Camping, Kathleen Lake campground
Location: Kluane National Park and Reserve
Already up? Get your hiking gear together, put on your shoes and set off to discover the amazing Kluane landscapes on foot! How about a hike up the King’s Throne? Perhaps a paddle on the crystal-clear waters of Kathleen Lake is more your thing.
Recommended accommodation: oTENTik, Kathleen Lake campground
Location: Kluane National Park and Reserve
Wake up and spend a morning soaking up the scenery at Kathleen Lake. Go birdwatching along the Dezadeash River Trail. There’s still time to enjoy the views from the Rock Glacier Trail before heading back.
Distance: Return to Whitehorse, 155 km