The Chilkoot Trail, AK

The Chilkoot Trail is the 33-mile historic trail of the Klondike Gold Rush through the Coast Mountains. It starts in Skagway, AK and completes in Bennet, B.C. Although not a very long trail, it is a difficult trail and was comfortably done in about 5 days. Consider yourself lucky to have good weather–and be prepared for wet and COLD conditions! We saw several people struggling to stay warm, and one man in pre-hypothermic conditions. Be prepared, or go with someone experienced.

I was lucky enough to be able to join a crazy group of Alaskans through my friend Sierra, which left no moments boring.

To prepare:  Get a permit online. You will have to collect your permit and get the talk from the forest ranger at the permit station in Skagway. Permits are issued at the Trail Center in Skagway. The Trail Center is on Broadway between 5th and 6th Avenues.

You will also want to buy a train ticket from Bennet to Skagway for the last day of your hike, so you aren’t stranded there (as there is nothing in Bennet besides a lake, campsite, and some old buildings). You buy a cheap ticket to sit in the back of the scenic railway tour to return back to Skagway.

Our Itinerary: (thanks to Rain for making a kickass itinerary)
DAY 1: Hike 7.7 miles to CANYON CITY CAMP
DAY 2: Hike 6 miles to SHEEP CAMP
DAY 3: Hike 7 miles over Golden Staircase to HAPPY CAMP
DAY 4: Hike 9 miles to BARE LOON LAKE CAMP
DAY 5: Hike 4 miles to BENNET—DONE!

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Thankful for wood stove fires after long rainy days
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Thankful for boxed wine after long rainy days
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Day 1 Campsite
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Sav in the aftermath
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A history lesson from the ranger made more fun by our groups interesting and thought provoking questions
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Sun breaks = dry everything ASAP
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The Golden Staircase! No joke in poor weather
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1 mile, almost vertical
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Fog makes it easy to forget about heights
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Golden Staircase (Thank you Zach and Jacob for tag teaming my backpack in the sketchy part!!!)

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Screw happy camp and it’s severe lack of space. Look how happy they look…
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speaks for itself. Happy camp has one large shelter that makes it difficult to find sitting room and enough room to hang dry your wet clothes. No fire either.

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Beautiful lakes revealed themselves on the 3rd and 4th days!
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Sierra transformed into a beautiful homeless bag lady
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Bare Loon Camp
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People loved camping near us because we weren’t obnoxious at all
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Look for our pad with our names!

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Last morning coffee at Bare Loon Camp

 

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