Arctic Winter Explorer | Ice Road to The Arctic Sea


  • Duration: 8 Days / 7 Nights
  • Whitehorse – Dawson City – Eagle Plains –Arctic Circle - Inuvik – Aklavik – Tuktoyaktuk - Aklavik
  • Individual guiding and transportation during the entire tour.
  • City sightseeing tour in Whitehorse & Dawson City.
  • Historic First Nation City Tour in Tuktoyaktuk.
  • Overnight stay with First Nation Family in Tuktoyaktuk.
  • Arctic Circle Ceremony.
  • Flight tickets from Inuvik – Whitehorse.
On this tour, we will travel overland from the Pacific to the Arctic, along snow covered highways and roadways built of ice along ancient wildlife corridors, and traditional trading routes of First Nations traders and later on used by Klondike Gold Rush prospectors and NWMP patrolmen. 

The journey to the Arctic offers some of the greatest geographic diversity in the country; the Tombstone Mountains in the central Yukon are among the youngest mountain ranges in North America, while the low rolling Ogilvie’s with their naked spines were not glaciated during the last Ice Age, and thus are among the oldest. North of the Ogilvie Mountains, the landscape gradually flattens out into low tundra and just after crossing the Arctic Circle the Richardson Mountains, the Northern-most extension of the Rocky Mountains, come into view. 

From there, the roadway will begin its descent into the impressive Mackenzie River Delta; 12th  largest in the world, to arrive at Inuvik, known as the Place of Man. We will travel to the isolated community of Aklavik, once the region’s administrative centre, locals were slated to be moved to Inuvik, but refused – hence their motto, “Never say die.”, on the Arctic coast, accessible only by a winter “ice-road” constructed out of the frozen ice of the Mackenzie River and the Arctic Ocean. Exploring this remote village we will visit the grave of the Mad Trapper, the mysterious backwoods killer who led Mounties on one of Canada’s greatest manhunts. 

The tour ends with an exciting excursion to the Inuvialuit village of Tuktoyaktuk, on the Arctic coast, where we learn about the local history and culture.

Note:  
This tour does not accept children below 19 years.
The tour itinerary is in reverse every second departure

Note : Operation of this tour is subject to the evolving COVID-19 Situation.

Please contact our Canada Destination Specialist for information and assistance.

Arrive in Whitehorse.  You will be met on arrival by our representative who will transfer you to your hotel in downtown Whitehorse (4 AM to 8 PM only). Enroute, our guide will offer a city highlight tour that includes SS Klondike National Historic Site, the Old Log Church, and the Log Cabin Skyscraper. Later this afternoon, you will meet your fellow travellers, and tour guide who will review the itinerary and your equipment.

Overnight in Whitehorse, YT.
Before late 1950’s, the only way to travel to Dawson City in summer was on a majestic paddle-wheeler like the SS Klondike. Today, cover the 550 km distance from Whitehorse to Dawson City in just a few hours. Our route today takes us through the heart of the Yukon interior pretty much the Yukon River valley.  Enroute, we will stop for a coffee in the morning at Braeburn Lodge, famous for its massive cinnamon buns, before continuing northbound on the Klondike Highway.  We will pass through several small native villages and settlements including, Carmacks, Pelly Crossing and Stewart Crossing. Close to Carmacks, the road offers great views of famous Five Finger Rapids.  Approximately, an hour outside of Dawson, we will stop at the Tintina Trench overlook for views of the expansive Yukon interior with the Ogilvie Mountains. After check-in, we’ll have a bite to eat, and then we’ll keep an eye out for the Northern Lights, which can often be seen right over the town.

Overnight in Dawson City, YT.
Dawson City is home to world’s greatest Gold Rush. Some 50,000 gold seekers arrived here in 1898 making Dawson City the largest town west of Winnipeg and North of Seattle (USA) at that time. The entire community is now a national historic site, and the romance of the Old West can be felt on every corner. Dawson’s unpaved streets and wooden boardwalks are still roamed by miners, hunters, and trappers. Parks Canada has restored many of the original buildings including the Palace Grand Theatre, the Commissioner’s Residence and the cabins of Jack London and Robert Service’s cabin, among many others. 

Today, we will also drive-up Bonanza Creek Road to the actual claim where gold was discovered in 1896. Discovery Claim is located near the impressive Dredge #4 National Historic Site, and we will pull off the highway for a photostop. 

Spend the evening to discover Dawson City’s small but authentic bar scene.  You will find many long-time residences who can tell you more tales of the far north.

Overnight in Dawson City, YT.
Today, we get to an early start.  We will get on “the Dempster”, one of the truly great Canadian roadways. Constructed in the late 1970’s, the Dempster is still the only fully public road in all North America that will cross the Arctic Circle. Today’s drive is considered one of most scenic; Tombstone Territorial Park encompasses the jagged peaks to the West that give the park its name and further along, the Ogilvie Mountains offer superb scenery and stunning vistas. You will see wildlife quite often along the roadsides.  Keep a close watch for foxes, the occasional wolf, and caribou.  We’ll stop for a picnic lunch along the beautiful scenery of the Dempster Highway. Our tour will pull into Eagle Plains late afternoon/early evening.   Eagle Plains is a small settlement with a modest hotel, a fuel station, and highway maintenance station – the only civilization for approximately the next 300 km in either direction, it feels a little alone.

Overnight in Eagle Plains, YT.
This morning, departing Eagle Plains, our first stop will be at the Arctic Circle crossing.  We will celebrate our arrival at the Arctic Circle with a glass of champagne to commemorate this special occasion. Crossing a Richardson Mountain range and the Mackenzie and Peel Rivers), we arrive at the First Nations community of Fort MacPherson. The remains of the famed Lost Patrol, discovered here by RNWMP Corporal Dempster (after whom for whom the highway is named) is laid to rest here. A former Hudson Bay trading post, you will still find some native elders still wander the village in Hudson Bay print dresses. Inuvik is a relatively young community with an ancient history. The Canadian government commissioned the building of the town in the 1950’s when it became apparent that the nearby traditional village of Aklavik, was slowly sinking into the delta. Inuvialuit people (Inuit, once referred to pejoratively as Eskimos) were also moved down from various points on the Arctic coast. Appropriately, the name Inuvik means Place of Man in the Inuvialuit language.  Before we proceed to our hotel, we will go on a short tour of the village.  Later, this evening, you will have time to explore the town on your own.

Overnight in Inuvik, NWT.
Today will be a memorable day; at the rivers entrance into the Arctic Ocean, the road turns northeast and travels along the coastline of Arctic Ocean toward the village of “Tuk” as it is known by residents. Not far from town, you’ll see the first of several ‘pingos’. These are mountains literally made of ice; heaved-up season after season with the annual freeze and thaw. The tallest is over 100 meters! Local guides will meet with us and take us on a tour of their unique village.  Stops along the way include the historic Lady of Lourdes schooner and some of Tuk’s famous community buildings such as sod houses and churches. You’ll also see the Northern Early Warning site (formerly DEW Line) and even get a chance to dip your toe in the Arctic Ocean! You’ll also be invited to a local resident’s home for a glimpse at home-life in a northern community.

Overnight at Tuktoyaktuk, NWT.
Departing Tuktoyaktuk, we will travel by ice-road across the expansive Mackenzie River delta towards the isolated community of Aklavik, once the region’s administrative centre.  The inhabitants of Aklavik were slated to be moved to Inuvik, but refused – hence their motto, “Never say die”, on the Arctic coast.  Aklavik is only accessible only by a winter “ice-road” constructed out of the frozen ice of the Mackenzie River and the Arctic Ocean.  Exploring this remote village, we will visit the grave of the Mad Trapper, the mysterious backwoods killer who led Mounties on one of Canada’s greatest manhunts. 

Afternoon and evening free for optional sightseeing and tours in Inuvik.

Overnight in Inuvik, NWT.
This morning, we will transfer to Inuvik Airport, and board southbound flight to Whitehorse. Tour services end on arrival at Whitehorse Airport. 

Optional evening in Whitehorse or connecting flights.

End of Arctic Winter Explorer | Ice Road to The Arctic Sea

Inclusions

  • 7-nights accommodations
  • 1 night Whitehorse, YT.
  • 2 nights in Dawson City, YT.
  • 1 night in Eagle Plains, YT.
  • 2 nights in Inuvik, NWT.
  • 1 night at Tuktoyaktuk, NWT.
  • Individual guiding and transportation during the entire tour.
  • City sightseeing tour in Whitehorse.
  • City sightseeing tour in Dawson City.
  • Historic First Nation City Tour in Tuktoyaktuk.
  • Overnight stay with First Nation Family in Tuktoyaktuk.
  • All overland transportation.
  • Arctic Circle ceremony.
  • Flight tickets from Inuvik – Whitehorse.
  • Emergency equipment including First Aid, kit, satellite telephone.
  • Arrival transfer from Whitehorse Airport to hotel in downtown Whitehorse on Day 1.
  • Departure transfer from hotel in Inuvik to Inuvik Airport.
  • Resort fees, Taxes & HST

Exclusions

  • Airfare.  Offered as a supplement on request.
  • Meals including breakfast.
  • Arctic Winter Clothing Package – offered as a supplement.
  • Porterage at hotels. 
  • Bottled Water in hotel rooms.
  • Visa and Documentation Fees.
  • Telephone calls, Laundry, and other expenses.
  • Any personal expenses.
  • Gratuities for hotel staff.
  • Travel Insurance – highly recommended. If client declines your offer to sell Travel Insurance, you are required to secure a Liability Waiver signed by the client that you must provide us on demand.  We sell Travel Insurance to residents of Ontario.  Non-residents of Ontario as well as clients from abroad must purchase Travel Insurance in the province/state/country where they reside.
  • Optional Tours and activities.
  • Early Check-in and Late Check-out charges.  Charges will apply.
  • Gratuities for Tour Guides/Driver cum Guides (Expected)
  • If applicable, cost of any RTPCR/Antigen Test or costs related to quarantine.

Accommodations Featured

Please contact our Canada Destination Specialist for information and assistance.

Tariffs

Room Configuration Beds Occupancy
TWIN or
SINGLE or
TRIPLE
QUAD
TWIN + 1 YOUTH + 1 CHILD
TWIN + 2 CHILD

For more information on Rooming and how rates apply, please refer to Important Notes

Optional Tour

These optional tours can be booked with our package. Please contact our Canada Destination Specialist for rates.

Notes about this Tour

Operation Info

YearOperation Dates
202324 Feb 2023 to 31 March 2023

Note: Blackout dates may apply. Please check with us for more information

Note: Operation of this tour is subject to the evolving COVID-19 situation.

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