Yukon Road Trip
Replies: 8 - Last Post: May 29, 2013 7:56 PM Last Post By: north_boy
May 11, 2013 9:34 PM
Yukon Road TripHi,
We plan to drive to Chetwynd to visit family. After we plan to travel 97 to Watson Lake, Ross river, Carmacks to Dawson city and return via highway 1 to Haines Junction Whitehorse, Watson and follow 37 to 16 and back to Prince George.
We are driving a 4x 4 but need to find sleeping accommodations. We are open to any style that is low priced but clean and safe.
Any accommodation suggestions are welcome as we enjoy hostels, motels or B& B as breakfast is in the price.
Suggestions as to stops that we might make would also be appreciated. Hikes of a few hours, tour company, fishing camps, vistas, easy water trip or what ever you have enjoyed would be great to help with our planning.
We will be leaving mid month and are aiming for 2 weeks but not fixed on this an it could expand as activities present themselves.
John and Mary
May 12, 2013 4:10 AM
May 12, 2013 6:42 AM
May 12, 2013 8:11 AM
May 12, 2013 8:42 AM
May 12, 2013 10:27 AM
May 14, 2013 1:27 PM
May 15, 2013 4:24 PM
7In Dawson City you can hike the little mountain just south of the town (you will know it when you see it, the one that experienced a large landslide.) It's a pleasant walk lasting just a few hours up and down. At the town visitor center they have maps for that and other local hikes.
North of Dawson in the Tombstone Mountain range there is some great hiking (Mt. Goldensides is a fantastic day hike.)
Have heard excellent things about Kluane but haven't been there myself.
I second the camping suggestion. It's very pleasant to camp in 24 hour sunlight.
May 29, 2013 7:56 PM
8Marydoreen -- first of all, you have chosen a good route.
Dawson City: we found a campsite near town, but I can't recall exactly where. While there you should make sure you get out to the the "Number Nine Dredge." It's a fascinating insight into our mining heritage and changing attitudes to the environment. Not to mention just awesome. Dawson City requires a day or two.
I've spent 10 days hiking all over the Tombstones. If you are pressed for time, Kluane entirely trumps them. Making Haines Junction your base will allow you to do lots of day hikes in the region. There is a campsite right in the Junction and relatively cheap beer and a laundromat at the "Gateway" pub.
Whitehorse deserves a day or two. You can stay in the Robert W. Service campsite, which is walking distance (along the Yukon River) from downtown. It caters to the international backpacker set and has a very nice vibe. (It's a place for tents, not RVs).
BTW: Although Watson Lake doesn't really offer much it does have two things worth seeing: the signpost forest and the museum, which provides great info on the history of the Yukon and the highways you've been driving.
Once you are in BC, you can keep your eyes open for both provincial parks and BC foresty campsites. Often the forestry campsites are free (if off the beaten track). While doing your research on this, consider buying the British Columbia Recreational Atlas. (http://www.recreationalatlas.com/) It will be a great resource for you as you drive, hugely informative.
When you reach the junction of 37 and 37A at Meziadin you might want to consider a side trip to Stewart and Hyder. There is a campsite in Stewart and a nicer one right at the junction (Meziadin) on the lake.
Stewart is a currently active frontier mining town. On the other side of Hyder you can drive up to then along the valley above the Salmon Glacier. It's an awesome experience even for locals who do it regularly.
Then just as you are approaching hwy 16 you will pass two first nations villages; Kitwancool (Gitanyow) and Kitwanga (Gitwangak). They are both tiny villages but host some wonderful totem poles. I think Gitanyow has the oldest totem standing on its original site in North America. Emily Carr made the Gitwangak totems famous in her paintings.
An hour from Gitwangak you'll be in Terrace where you can camp at the rather urban Ferry Island campsite. It's nice, yet just across the river from a Walmart. In Terrace you will only be a couple of hours from Prince Rupert.
The drive from Terrace to Rupert is very scenic -- even for the jaded eye that has driven so much beautiful highway.
Very near Prince Rupert is the Prudhomme Lake campsite -- it's tiny but pretty standard Provincial Park. They guy who manages it offers kayaking into the local fjords (guided or bare boat rentals).
Give Rupert at least one full day. In other words, don't just rush there for the ferry — Cow Bay is a nice stroll and you can't go wrong having a coffee at Cowpacinos.
Too bad there is no more PMs here — I've travelled this route dozens of times and love it.
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