navigating the yukon river
The Lewes River is the former name of the upper course of the Yukon, from Marsh Lake to the confluence of the Pelly River at Fort Selkirk.

Gravel bars are recommended for camping since they are often breezy and deter the infamous Alaska mosquitoes. Its organizational goals include giving voice to the village fishers that have traditionally managed these resources, enabling communication between fishers and fishery managers, and helping to preserve the ecological integrity of salmon runs and local cultures' Traditional Ecological Knowledge[22], In March 2001, the U.S. & Canadian governments passed the Yukon River Salmon Agreement to better manage an internationally shared resource and ensure that more Canadian-originated salmon return across the border.

And be sure to keep your camera ready in case larger wildlife, like a bear or moose, appears on shore. Trip length varies depending on weather conditions, type of boat, and whether visitors continually float during long daylight hours or if they stop to camp and explore. Canoeists are required to use the steel BRFCs, available free of charge in Eagle and Fairbanks. Write in the margins, highlight your favourite itineraries, or rip out the photos and sleep with them on the pillow next to you—whatever helps plan the trip of your dreams. A few areas around waterways provide taller and stronger poplar trees where this may be possible. [12] In 1843, the Holikachuks had told the Russian-American Company that their name for the river was Yukkhana and that this name meant big river. The Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council, a cooperative effort of 70 First Nations and tribes in Alaska and Canada, has the goal of making the river and its tributaries safe to drink from again by supplementing and scrutinizing government data. Access to the interior of Alaska and Yukon was hindered by large mountains and distance, but the wide Yukon River provided a feasible route. A little further on is Hootalinqua, from the Northern Tutchone word meaning “running against the mountain”. The villages along the Yukon have historically relied on and continue to rely on salmon for their cultural, subsistence, and commercial needs. It is recommended that visitors bring all necessary camping gear and supplies. Complete with notable location descriptions, this virtual tour of the Yukon River is for entertainment and basic orientation purposes. A product of true Yukon ingenuity, it was made from a stripped-down caterpillar tractor, a car motor and various other homemade parts. Gwich'in vowels may or may not be nasalized. Over the last 20 years salmon recruitment, the number of returning adults, has taken several shocks. As a result, Yukon River salmon are noted for their especially rich and oily meat. Minimum impact camping techniques are encouraged. After the purchase of Alaska by the United States in 1867, the Alaska Commercial Company acquired the assets of the Russian-American Company and constructed several posts at various locations on the Yukon River. Tribal organizations such as Association of Village Council Presidents (AVCP), Council of Athabascan Tribal Governments (CATG), and Tanana Chiefs Conference (TCC) work to sustain Yukon River salmon to promote healthy people, cultures, and communities.

After gear inspections and provisioning, this epic adventure starts right from downtown Whitehorse. After Mountain Village, the main Yukon channel frays into many channels, sprawling across the delta.

Carmacks to Dawson City: approximately 9 days. You’ll spend the long, relaxed days of summer paddling, camping in tents and eating by the campfire under the midnight sun. The river flows northwest through Yukon-Charley Rivers National Preserve for 128 miles. Visitors should be prepared for all weather conditions because conditions can change rapidly and may be extreme, even in July. The Yukon River has had a history of pollution from military installations, dumps, wastewater, and other sources. Visitors who float approximately 30 miles a day and camp each night usually take around 5 days to reach Circle. The upper end of the Yukon River was originally known as the Lewes River until it was established that it actually was the Yukon. Yukon-Charley Rivers provides both steel drum BRFCs with locking lids and smaller backpacker BRFCs. The Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Association was formed in 1990 by consensus of fishers representing the entire drainage in response to recent disaster years. The river passes through the communities of Whitehorse, Carmacks, (just before the Five Finger Rapids) and Dawson City in Yukon, and crossing Alaska into Eagle, Circle, Fort Yukon, Stevens Village, Rampart, Tanana, Ruby, Galena, Nulato, Grayling, Holy Cross, Russian Mission, Marshall, Pilot Station, St. Marys (which is accessible from the Yukon at Pitkas Point), and Mountain Village. Of those delta communities, Emmonak is the largest with roughly 760 people in the 2000 census. After following in the footsteps of gold seekers on the river, this is the culmination of the journey. The bluffs become less prominent as the river leaves the preserve near Circle. The river is 3,190 kilometres (1,980 mi)[3][4] long and empties into the Bering Sea at the Yukon–Kuskokwim Delta.

Either way, Atlin Lake flows into Tagish Lake (via the Atlin River), as eventually does Lake Lindeman after flowing into Bennett Lake. Common methods of fishing on the Yukon include set gillnets, drift nets, dip nets, and fish wheels. Enjoy a boat ride down the Yukon, regardless of your location or the weather! Visitors may bring their own vessels or rent canoes or rafts locally. The Yukon River is home to one of the longest salmon runs in the world. [17] This locale near the Seward Peninsula represents the near westernmost limit of the Black Spruce, Picea mariana,[18] one of the most widespread conifers in northern North America. Don’t miss out on up-to-date Yukon news, events and activities, customized to your interests. The first steamers on the lower Yukon River were work boats for the Collins Overland Telegraph in 1866 or 1867, with a small steamer called Wilder. As salmon do not eat during their spawning migration, Yukon River salmon must have great reserves of fat and energy to fuel their thousands-mile long journey. Visitors access Eagle by driving via the Taylor Highway or flying in on small aircraft. Just out of Carmacks, Five Finger Rapids is one of two rapids on the route (Rink Rapids is the other). The river is silt laden in summer due to glacial runoff, and it is completely clear in winter when glaciers are frozen. Fairbanks, AK [7][citation needed] However, the Environmental Protection Agency does not list the Yukon River among its impaired watersheds, and water quality data from the U.S. Geological Survey shows relatively good levels of turbidity, metals, and dissolved oxygen. For questions, contact the Eagle visitor center at (907) 547-2233. [14][15] Then, two years later, the Gwich'ins told the Hudson's Bay Company that their name for the river was Yukon and that the name meant white water river. Extra supplies should always be taken in case trip time is extended due to weather or other unplanned events. "[The Yukon] in the language of the Kang-ulit (, Thirty-nine pages of cited "Sources," representing over a century of research, did not verify, Klondike Gold Rush International Historical Park, Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council, Learn how and when to remove this template message, List of longest rivers of the United States (by main stem), "Environmental and Hydrologic Overview of the Yukon River Basin, Alaska and Canada", The Thirty Mile (Yukon River) National Heritage River, "USGS Water Quality Samples – 1 sites found", Pollock vs. salmon bycatch issue stirs waters at meeting, "Nat Geo sets summer premieres for adventure series", Canadian Council for Geographic Education page with a series of articles on the history of the Yukon River, Yukon River Drainage Fisheries Association,, Rivers of Southeast Fairbanks Census Area, Alaska, Rivers of Yukon–Koyukuk Census Area, Alaska, Articles containing undetermined-language text, Articles with unsourced statements from June 2012, Articles needing additional references from September 2009, All articles needing additional references, Wikipedia articles with WorldCat-VIAF identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, The Yukon River features as the setting for the 2015, This page was last edited on 21 October 2020, at 10:04. Axis of the region, the silt-laden Yukon here flows constricted and swift through a great geologic fault. There are also two pedestrian-only bridges in Whitehorse, as well as a dam across the river and a hydroelectric generating station. Carmacks to Dawson City: 415km/260 mi. For the safety of visitors, the NPS recommends that floaters file a Voluntary Backcountry Trip Plan with the preserve and a friend or relative. [10] White water river in fact corresponds to Gwich'in words that can be shortened to form Yukon.

Sadly, like all great expeditions, yours must come to an end. Whitehorse to Carmacks: 320km/200mi. Get into the rhythm of an extended canoe expedition on the mythic Yukon river.

[8] The Yukon and Mackenzie rivers have much higher suspended sediment concentrations than the great Siberian Arctic rivers.[9]. The town still evokes the heartbeat of gold rush times and you can feel the ghosts of those long gone adventurers as you stroll along the wooden boardwalks. Yukon River, Whitehorse to Dawson City Flip Stoker has posted a log of some of the most interesting points along the river. USGS 1:63,000 Maps needed to cover the trip from Eagle to Circle are Eagle D-1; Charley A-1, A-2, B-2, B-3, B-4, B-5, B-6, C-6, and D-6; and Circle C-1 and D-1. It was a popular gathering site for trade and visiting between the Tlingit, Southern Tutchone and Northern Tutchone people. It’s a stretch of water that presented real danger to river boats. [10][11] The contraction is Ųųg Han, if the /ųų/ remains nasalized, or Yuk Han, if there is no vowel nasalization. Gravel bars also allow ease of access, compared to vast areas of steep cutbanks, and for visitors to be out in the open where they are less likely to surprise or be surprised by wildlife. Navigational obstacles on the Yukon River are the Five Finger Rapids and Rink Rapids downstream from Carmacks. From prehistoric times until the late 1950s when all-weather roads arrived, the Yukon River was the region’s highway for settlement and development. The construction of the dam flooded the White Horse Rapids, which gave the city its name, and created Schwatka Lake. Back onto the river for the second half of your journey. At the confluence with the Big Salmon River, you’ll pass by the abandoned First Nations village of Big Salmon before reaching the derelict Cyr’s gold dredge. Option: If you’re interested in retracing the entire journey of the stampeders from Skagway to Dawson City then check out this itinerary. Do not leave food or scraps, as this may attract bears and present a hazard for the next traveler. The lower half of the river lies in the U.S. state of Alaska. The root cause of these poor returns remains debated, with questions about the effects of climate change on ocean food-supply & disease prevalence in returning adults, the methods of fishing used on the river, and the effects of the Bering Sea Pollock trawl fleet on food supply and salmon bycatch. Yukon Salmon Sub-Committee A public advisory body whose main concern is the conservation of Yukon River salmon stocks. As you travel along the shoreline of Lake Laberge, there are plenty of excellent day hiking opportunities before reaching the section of river known as the Thirty Mile. Combine all that with wildlife viewing, beautiful mountain vistas and gold rush history, and you have a wilderness experience you won’t soon forget.


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