Indian Summer Tour

Canoeing  and Backpacking during the  fall colors in the Yukon, Canada's northern wilderness

Canoe trip can be booked separately.
Details at the end of this page



Canoeing Big Salmon River, YukonPaddling an Old Town canoe









Unrealfantasticoverwhelming: those are the expressions we hear when someone sees those autumn colors throughout the Yukon Territory. From the snow capped mountains in a blue sky, to the fire red bear berries on the alpine slopes, to the golden leafs of the poplar trees, you will find all stages of colors in one single picture.
Sitting at the campfire on a crisp morning, you will see the mist slowly rising  above the water, making way for another fine day with blue sky. Geese and Swans migrate south and we watch out for their formations when we hear them honking.

The call of an Owl in the evening or the howling of Wolves and Coyotes mix with the crackling of the campfire. This unique  experience means wilderness in its  true sense. And we are right in the middle of it..

5 days Backpacking trip on the Cottonwood Trail through the heart of Kluane National Park. We cross two mountain passes, and wander through alpine meadows. There are several knee deep creeks to cross. 

 Kluane is the home of  Dall Sheep, Mountain Goat Moose, Black Bear and Eagles. Within this untouched wilderness area, which is 75% covered by glaciers, rises Mount Logan - Canada's highest peak which is almost 6000 meters high with the largest non polar icefield in the world

We start with the canoe trip on Quiet Lake. The following two smaller lakes give ample time to get acquainted with the new element. For the next 11 days we follow the path of the Big Salmon River. Every day we move on, to set up camp at different locations. Sweepers and faster water alternates with more sedate sections . Seasoned paddlers and ambitious beginners alike will be inspired by this untouched wilderness river.
As we float downstream we will be on the watch out for moose and eagles. Beaver lodges are a common sight, and if we are lucky we‘ll see the beaver himself 
 The beginning of September changes the color of the vegetation to a carpet of red and gold - Indian Summer we call it.

Besides the proper technique of canoeing, your guide will be able to tell you lots about wildlife, plants and traditional lifestyle in the wilderness.


Hiking Cottonwood Trail Kluane National ParkHiking Cottonwood Trail, Kluane Park












Day 1 - 2

Arrival in Whitehorse, pick up at the airport, transfer to your hotel. Time for discovering Whitehorse, last minute shopping before the trip. Instead of starting in a hurry, we use the second day to let you wind down and take in the atmosphere of Whitehorse and it's frontier attitude. 
You have time to explore Whitehorse on your own. Visit the sternwheeler, the fish ladder, historic buildings - and maybe Canadian Tire. You might want to do some last minute shopping or just sit on the banks of the Yukon River and wonder what lies beyond.

Day 3 From Whitehorse we drive for 250 km  with our van to Quiet Lake, the start of the canoe trip.
Day 4 - 12 Surrounded by the rugged mountains of the Big Salmon Range the small lake system makes us feel at home in the wilderness right away.

Starting as a small creek, the Big Salmon River has clear water and some tight bends with driftwood obstructions. The river widens and small tributaries with gravel bars invite for frequent stops. After each bend, the scenery seems to change. Slower sections are great to enjoy the vistas, while the odd log pile gets us back into action. Fishing and foto stops break up the day. Setting up camp at a new location every evening becomes a daily routine. On the campfire your guide will create a delicious meal.
We have one optional rest day for a short hike, relaxing in camp, or building a sweat lodge in a traditional way. By now, the Big Salmon meanders through more open poplar country. Swift choppy water on the last day on the Salmon River makes for some excitement.
Way too fast, it seems, after 250 km we reach the Yukon River.

Day 13 - 14

From here on, we float down the River, with occasional stops. Relicts from the times of the gold rush are always interesting to explore. Fallen in log cabins, gold dredges and other mining equipment are all that remain of those heydays, more than 100 years ago. A native cemetery at Little Salmon is a last stop. Just before reaching the Village of Carmacks we end the trip.
Here we get picked up by our van, and drive back along the Klondike Highway to Whitehorse. 
This evening we camp at the wilderness setting at Yukon Wild. here you can see what log cabin life is all about. Clients just taking part on the canoe trip, will stay in Whitehorse at the hotel.

Day 15 After sorting your gear for the upcoming hiking days  we drive 150 km to Kluane National Park, the destination of our backpacking trip. A brief stop at the visitor center in Haines Junction gives us an overview about the whole park. Close to Kathleen Lake, the start of the hike, we set up camp for the night. An evening walk along the lakeshore will open up the spirits for the following days.
Day 16 To get acquainted with your hiking boots we start our Kluane days with a day hike into sub alpine terrain. Snow covered peaks and ridges are the backdrop for the colorful tundra we reach after a short ascend. Birch and poplar trees create a pattern of red and gold. For the ambitious hiker King's Throne can be a lure to get a fantastic view towards Mount Logan and the lake system right below
Day 17 - 21

Along Kathleen Lake, surrounded by the steep slopes of the Auriol Range, we follow a historic trading trail . We have to cross some mountain creeks before we reach Cottonwood Pass. Now we are in the alpine, with far reaching views in both directions. Here it is easy to spot animals like Bears and Dall Sheep. For 2 days we will be above tree line with unobstructed views. In the distance we see the stretched out expanse of Mush Lake, before we descend Dalton Pass into the Alder Creek valley. 
At the end of day 5  we reach the end of the trail and move on to Whitehorse by Van. A hotel room and a hot shower waiting for you.

A Dinner with the group rounds of an amazing 3 week wilderness trip.

Day 22 Transfer to the Airport

The canoe trip on the Big Salmon River can also be booked separately.

Rate: Can. $ 2.495.-    + 5 % GST    out of Whitehorse
Date: August 21 - September 4, 2016
Included in price: 3 nights in a hotel in Whitehorse (double occupancy), all required shuttles and transfers from Whitehorse, introduction course in canoeing  canoes, paddles, lifejackets, complete cooking and camp gear, all meals during the canoe trip and the auxiliary program in Kluane,12 nights in 2 person tents 
( single room and tent  Can. $ 350.- extra), experienced licensed guide, satellite phone on the canoe trip for your safety.
personal luggage, not used on the trip, can be stored at our place ( Yukon Wild)
Extra cost: Transportation to and from Whitehorse, meals while staying in the hotel, alcoholic beverages, fishing license.

Equipment List for this tour