Day 1: Arrival in Whitehorse
Welcome to Yukon! A Ruby Range representative will meet you immediately on arrival, and drive roughly two hours up the Klondike Highway to Carmacks. Here you’ll meet your guide and the rest of your group, some of whom have already paddled the first portion of the river from Whitehorse. We’ll review the itinerary, safety, and everyone’s responsibilities for the next thirteen days. (Overnight camping accommodation)
Day 2-10: Yukon River
Our campground is located right beside the Yukon River. We’ll break camp and get an early start this morning, and go through a crash course in paddling a Canadian canoe. Pay attention, because the Five Finger Rapids are not far from the put-in. These are the only real rapids on the river, and easily managed. With the help of your guide you’ll have little trouble navigating the standing waves. As we travel on, soaring cutbanks and high bluffs dominate the scenery. After three days on the river, Fort Selkirk is a major highlight. If time allows, the group may spend an extra day in this preserved trading post. The site is still actively used by hunters and trappers of the Selkirk First Nation, who are friendly and fascinating hosts. With its carefully maintained and restored historic buildings, this quiet village is as close as you can come to paddling back in time. The camping beyond is usually on gravel bars with sweeping views of the broad river valley. Bears, moose, and eagles are common. Several spots offer the chance to hike up to viewpoints at the confluences of major creeks, and cabins and mining relics appear more frequently as we descend into gold bearing creeks and tributary rivers, ending ultimately at Dawson City at the confluence of the Klondike River. (Overnight accommodation at wilderness campsites)
Day 10: Dawson City
After more than a week on the river, we arrive in the colourful boomtown of Dawson City. The city grew up almost overnight during the Klondike Gold Rush, becoming the largest city west of Winnipeg and north of Seattle. A National Historic Site, many of the false-fronted buildings and historic homes have been restored, and town holds on to its frontier flavour. During the long days of subarctic summer, Dawson is alive with festivals, live music, and contemporary art. We will spend two nights in a downtown hotel, giving you time to explore the town and surrounding historic sites. (Overnight accommodation in Dawson City)
Day 11: Dawson City
We have a full day to experience Dawson City today. Included in the program is a visit to Gold Bottom Mine. A tour of this working placer mine will introduce you to the history of Dawson’s famous gold fields, and show you how today’s family-run mines continue to search for the precious metal. You’ll have a chance to try your hand at panning your own pay-dirt, too. We may also pay a visit to Bonanza Creek, site of the great gold strike and home of restored Dredge #4. The rest of the day is free to explore the town itself. Depending on the time and the group’s interest, we may visit the cabins of Jack London and Robert Service, the Dawson City Museum, the Danoja Zho Cultural Centre, or take a walking tour of the town’s many historic sites. We will also take a drive to the top of the Midnight Dome, the mountain that dominates the town, where we can see Dawson City, the gold fields, the distant Ogilvie mountains, and the river we have just travelled spread out in an extraordinary panorama. We’ll cap it all off with a night on the town and a visit to Dawson’s famous gambling hall, Diamond Tooth Gertie’s Casino. (Overnight accommodation in Dawson City)
Day 12: Dawson City - Whitehorse
We will return to whitehorse by van, via the Klondike Highway, stopping to revisit the Five Finger Rapids at the scenic overview, before returning to Whitehorse for a last dinner together and another night in a comfortable hotel. (Overnight accommodation in Whitehorse)
Day 13: Departure Whitehorse
Ruby Range will provide a transfer to the airport or to your next tour program. (End of tour services) (This is an expeditionary trip, and changes to the itinerary may be necessary due to weather or other conditions. Any changes are left to the discretion of the guide)
Yukon River – The Classic (Carmacks to Dawson City)
This version of our classic canoe expedition brings you the quieter and more remote second portion of the Yukon River, from Carmacks to Dawson City. This is a place of abundant wildlife and quiet trappers cabins, some abandoned, some still in use. The river is wide and the bluffs are high as we travel the final leg of the original stampeders’ route to the Klondike gold fields.
Our final destination is Dawson City. The trip includes two days to explore this fascinating and vibrant National Historic Site, with a tour of an active gold mine included in the itinerary.
Prior experience paddling open Canadian canoes is not required.
Double Room/Tent: CAD 2,095.00
Single Room/Tent: +CAD 415.00
All Rates per person (+ GST)
3 – 12 participants per date
A background in camping and paddling is an asset but not necessary. These programs are open to expert and novice paddlers alike.
- Expert guidance on the entire trip
- Canoes and camping equipment
- Overland transportation
- 2 person tents (9 nights)
- 1 nights hotel accommodation in Whitehorse
- 2 nights hotel accommodation in Dawson City
- Historic tour in Dawson City
- All meals on canoe trip
- Airport Shuttle in Whitehorseà
- Meals in hotels
- Fishing license
- Personal extras