Yukon Trails

Yukon Trails

 

Below is a series of short write ups about some multi-use trails around the Yukon.  For current trail condition reports, please see our Trail Conditions page.

The Great Trail
Bonneville Lakes loop
Coal Lake Road
Copper Haul Road
Dawson Overland Trail
Mt. McIntyre Trail

 

The Great Trail

The Great Trail (started in 1992 as the Trans Canada Trail, and rebranded as The Great Trail in 2016) is a multi-use trail that connects Canada from coast to coast to coast.  It is made up of hundreds of individual trails linked together to form the world’s longest recreational trail, stretching over 24,000 km and passing through all 13 provinces and territories. The Yukon is home to approximately 1,600 km of The Great Trail.  For more information on the Trans Canada Trail, The Great Trail, and the trails that make up the Yukon portion of it, please visit our Great Trail page at www.ksa.yk.ca/trails/trans-canada-trail.

 

Bonneville Lakes Loop

The Bonneville Lakes loop trail is a beautiful afternoon snowmobile ride just a few minutes west of Whitehorse.  It is a class four wilderness trail between the western shore of Fish Lake (approximately half way down the lake) and the trail network between Fish Lake and Jackson Lake.  Starting and finishing where Fish Lake Road meets Fish Lake, this loop is approximately 30 km.  The route includes frozen lake riding across Fish Lake, hill climbing and descending to hop over to Bonneville Lakes (don’t forget to look behind you for amazing mountain views), a trail across alpine and sub-alpine terrain, and finishes with a winding trail through the forest back to Fish Lake Road.  This route offers travelers a wide variety of scenery and terrain in a relatively short distance.  A variety of wildlife such as caribou and moose frequent the area, and in the Jackson Lake/Fish Lake Road area please slow down and give way to the many horse riders and dog teams that use the area.  Travelers are advised this is a class four wilderness trail with very limited signage and no services, and the trail can easily be obscured by blowing snow.  It is highly recommended that you go with someone who knows the way.

 

Coal Lake Road

The Coal Lake Road is a multi-use class four destination trail from the Copper Haul Road to the Coal Lake area. The trail starts right at the Sima Creek crossing on the Copper Haul Road, and immediately begins climbing through the forest and up into the alpine terrain between Golden Horn mountain and Mount Granger. Just above the tree line there are some information signs about various topics of interest in the area.  This area of the Yukon is home to two herds of Southern Lakes Caribou, which are often spotted from the Coal Lake trail.  In the 1990s numbers of Southern Lakes Caribou were found to be rapidly declining, and since then great effort has been put into an extensive recovery program.  Recent counts are coming back with good news, however the Klondike Snowmobile Association still strongly encourages everyone to please help protect the caribou by staying on designated trails whenever possible and to keep a large distance from any animals to avoid unnecessarily scaring them.  At the information signs just above the tree line the trail splits, left to Golden Horn mountain and to the right is the Coal Lake trail which winds south through the alpine area and eventually to a site not far from Coal Lake where a small coal mine was operated long ago.  There are many coal deposits in southern Yukon, however at this site it was found the coal was low grade and the small project was ended. The trail continues south and west and eventually links up with a route trail between Fish Lake and Rose Lake.  From here snowmobilers can turn north and it’s a short ride directly to the bottom of Fish Lake, making a loop ride suitable for day trips from Whitehorse.  North of the coal mine site there is also a trail branching off and leading directly to the eastern shore of Fish Lake.  Please note from the Copper Haul to the signs just above the tree line is a relatively easy and well marked trail, but beyond that point the trail becomes a remote wilderness trail with very limited signage and extreme conditions possible. Travel beyond that point is not recommended unless you are with someone who knows the way.

 

Copper Haul Road

The Copper Haul Road serves as the “main line” of The Great Trail in the Whitehorse area.  It is a year-round class three multi-use trail that runs north/south just west of urban Whitehorse, and connects several multi-use trail networks. The Copper Haul Road was originally constructed in the early 1900s as a spur line of the White Pass and Yukon Route railway to service several copper mines in the area, and when the last mine closed in the early 1980s the road was recycled into a multi-use trail.  For more information check out our Copper Haul Road page at www.ksa.yk.ca/trails/copper-haul-trail.

 

Dawson Overland Trail

During the Klondike Gold Rush, and for years before and after, the only way to travel between Whitehorse and Dawson City was via the Yukon River.  In 1902 the Yukon government contracted the White Pass & Yukon Route to build a winter road between the two communities, which was both shorter and safer than using the river.  The Dawson Overland Trail has long since been replaced by the North Klondike Highway, but the Takhini to Braeburn section remains open for adventure!  This approximately 100 km section is a class five wilderness trail running from the Takhini River Road just outside of Whitehorse to Braeburn Lodge on the North Klondike Highway.  For more information please visit our Dawson Overland Trail page at www.ksa.yk.ca/trails/dawson-overland-trail.

 

Mount McIntyre Trail

Mount McIntyre is a mountain guarding the west side of Whitehorse and stands a little over 5000 feet tall.  It’s known locally as “Mount Mac”.  Located near the peak is a VOR site, which is a key navigation aid for aircraft coming to and from Whitehorse as well as international air traffic passing overhead on their journeys between North America and Asia.   Nav Canada has placed a fence and do not enter signs around the VOR site, please respect this and do not enter as it is a hazardous place for the public to be and also being too close to their equipment can interfere with aircraft navigation.  That being said, there is an access trail from the Copper Haul Road to the VOR site, and this trail is open for recreational adventure!  The trail begins on the Copper Haul Road just a few metres south of the Copper Haul / McLean Lake Road intersection.  The trail starts through the forest but quickly ascends up the east side of the mountain, with beautiful views of Whitehorse on the way up.  As the trail comes through the tree line it crosses over to the west side of the mountain and offers outstanding views of Fish Lake and surrounding area.  As the trail continues along there is an intersection where travelers can either continue straight and go up to the peak near the VOR site, or turn west and go down to Fish Lake.  This trail is a class three trail with limited signage and no services, but it is a well traveled area.  From the Copper Haul to the top is approximately 12 km.  The Fish Lake turnoff is approximately nine km up from the Copper Haul and is a class four trail approximately five kilometers from the Mt. McIntyre trail to the shore of Fish Lake.  This loop is popular with winter tourists so please expect to encounter tour groups on both snowmobiles and dog sleds when travelling this area during winter months.

 

 

Don’t see the trail you were looking for?  Have something to add?  Let us know!  We are working on expanding this page to include more trails, so if you have an idea for a trail write up or you are interested in submitting a trail write up, contact us today!

 

 

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