Alaskan Cruise: Klondike Highway to Yukon

After walking around Skagway, it was time for our shore excursion! Independently, we had booked Frontier Excursions & Adventure’s Yukon Discovery Tour.

At around 9am we met out tour guide/driver, John, at the dock. We picked up a few more people downtown and then we were off! There were 14 of us on board the mini-bus and it didn’t feel crowded at all.

Loved this excursion! We could relax, take in the sights, and not have to worry about driving or dealing with car rentals. John, the tour guide/driver, was personable and knowledgeable about local history. He even graciously volunteered to take people’s photos.

The drive along the Klondike Highway is gorgeous and John pulled over at various scenic spots. We stopped at the Welcome to Alaska sign (even though we were leaving the U.S.– it happened to not be crowded, so we stopped here first).

Welcome to Alaska

Welcome to Alaska

We crossed into Canada at British Columbia where our passports were checked. And then we were off for more mountain vistas, lakes, waterfalls, and wildlife along the Klondike Highway. John encouraged us to shout “bear! bear! bear!” (or whatever animal we saw). Not too far into British Columbia, we spotted a bear and pulled over to observe.

bear!

bear!

The lakes and mountains are breathtaking!

Klondike Highway scenery

Klondike Highway scenery

After driving through a small bit of British Columbia, we passed into the Yukon Territory.

Yukon - Large than Life

Yukon – Large than Life

And we were treated to some more beautiful lakes and mountain scenery. Tagish Lake was one of my favorites.

Tagish Lake/Bove Island, Yukon

Tagish Lake/Bove Island, Yukon

Made a quick stop at Carcross Desert–the smallest desert in the world! I’ll put “desert” in air quotes because technically it’s just sand dunes.

Carcross Desert, Yukon

Carcross Desert, Yukon

From there, it was over to Caribou Crossing, where we enjoyed a lunch of BBQ chicken, baked potato, coleslaw, and fresh made donuts – all included in the tour price! Then we walked around the trading post, saw the sled dogs, and did some souvenir shopping.

Caribou Crossing, Yukon

Caribou Crossing, Yukon

 

Caribou Crossing, Yukon - sled dogs

Caribou Crossing, Yukon – sled dogs

Then we headed up a few miles (or kilometers since this is Canada!) to Emerald Lake with its (you guessed it) beautiful green colored waters.

Emerald Lake, Yukon

Emerald Lake, Yukon

Emerald Lake was the turn-around point. We headed back to Carcross, with a short tour around town and a stop at Bennett Lake. Then it was back down the Klondike Highway where we spotted a mama bear and two cubs.

Mama and her bear cubs!

Mama and her bear cubs!

Again, more gorgeous scenery. I can’t remember if this was Yukon or British Columbia?

Klondike Highway scenery

Klondike Highway scenery

 

Klondike Highway scenery

Klondike Highway scenery

In total, the tour lasts around 6.5 hours and is 150 miles (245 km) roundtrip . At the time of this writing, the Yukon Discovery Tour is $99 and includes pick-up/drop-off at the dock, plus lunch. Great price, small group, breathtaking scenery, and you don’t have to do any of the driving!

Below are some more photos. For the full set, check out my Flickr album.

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