Northern Adventures: 2-3 Day Guided Canoe Trip Yukon / Thirty Mile River

Described as “30 miles of magic” byNational Geographic, this is the most beautiful, historic and exciting section of the entire Yukon River (click here to see a map of the area). Its significance has been recognized by its designation as a Canadian Heritage River.

Emerald green in colour and crystal clear, it winds its way through endless forests of spruce and pine – around islands and gravel bars – under dramatic high clay banks – with bald eagles watching as we slip by below.

Wildlife seen along the river include moose, bear, caribou, wolf and wolverine. For the angler, the river offers the finest Arctic grayling fishing to be found anywhere. Large Northern pike and Lake trout are found in Lake Laberge while on the way to the river. Click here for more fishing information.

Along the river are many glimpses at the way people lived in the years following the Klondike Gold Rush of 1897-1898. At the head of the river is the now-silent community of Lower Laberge, where we’ll stop to explore the cabins and telegraph station as well as the remains of the sternwheeler Casca. She was one of 28 steamboats that worked the river in the first couple of decades after the gold rush.Click here for a map.

Several cabins and wood camps are passed, then at the lower end of the river is another abandoned village, Hootalinqua, where several buildings remain. Just downriver from Hootalinqua is the sternwheeler Norcom; pulled up on Shipyard Island some 90 years ago, she is intact to the point that you can still walk her decks today!

Itinerary

(This trip can also be done in 2 days, or extended to Carmacks for a 5-day trip)

Day 1:
We meet you at your hotel in the morning and shop for any last-minute needs.

A 45-minute drive will bring us to the dock at Lake Laberge. Canoes and gear will already be loaded on the Carolina Skiff. We head north, down the lake to the Thirty Mile – stopping at a beautiful sheltered bay for lunch. This is also an ideal time to check you out with the canoes and safety procedures – with instruction as needed, of course. We’ll take a short scenic paddle.

Afternoon finds us at Lower Laberge and the start of the Thirty Mile River. After exploring the historic site, you’ll head off downriver on your canoe adventure. Your guide will follow at a distance, out of earshot so that you get to experience the wilderness with no motor noise, but within sight for your safety.

In the late afternoon we’ll set up camp at a location selected for it’s view and great fishing. By then you’ll be ready more a gourmet meal cooked over an open fire by your guide.

Day 2:
After a hearty breakfast, we’ll launch back into the Thirty Mile. The river moves along at a good speed so paddling is very easy – allowing lots of time for looking around, taking pictures or doing a little fishing as you drift along.

For our lunch break we’ll pull into the 17 Mile Wood Camp, one of the dozens of spots along the river where steamboats used to stop to resupply wood for their boilers. We’ll take a short hike to explore the ruins of the historic camp, then continue the paddle down to our campsite at Hootalinqua, a beautiful location where the large Teslin River joins the Thirty Mile to become the Yukon River.

After another great meal cooked at the edge of the forest over an open fire, we’ll take a walk to explore this fascinating gold rush community.

Day 3:
After a leisurely breakfast, we’ll paddle a few minutes down to Shipyard Island and spend time exploring the old sternwheeler Norcom which was put up on the ways here in 1918.

Then we’ll load the canoes back on top of the power boat and head back up the Thirty Mile and across Lake Laberge. There will be time to explore the east side of the lake and stop at some of the spectacular beaches on that side for a snack and some beachcombing.

By about 6-7:00 p.m. you’ll be back at your hotel in Whitehorse.

Rates:

$395 per person per day for minimum 2 people. Discounts apply for groups and families – please inquire. Prices are in Canadian dollars. Prices do not include 5% GST.

  • All food and non-alcoholic beverages are supplied.
  • We also supply the finest in wilderness gear, including Woods tents, North Face sleeping bags and Therma-rest mattresses and pillows.
  • For information on what you need to bring with you on a trip with us, see our gear list.

Reserving a date for your Yukon adventure is easy – just contact us by email, phone or regular post at the address below and let us know when you would like to go. Click here for booking details.