The beautiful Kluane National Park and Reserve located in Canada’s Yukon Territory is almost 22,000 square kilometers of protected land filled with untouched wilderness. Home to vast wilderness of glaciers and towering snow covered peaks, Canada’s highest mountains as well as some of the world’s largest and the world’s largest non-polar icefield. With virtually no development beyond Kathleen Lake Campground and a few scattered backcountry campsites, Kluane National Park and Reserve is one of the world’s greatest nature preserves. Kluane National Park & Reserve is a must-see for adventure seekers, hikers in search of grand vistas, a place that offers unlimited solitude and boundless nature.
Here is our guide to visiting Kluane National Park & Reserve!
Information about Kluane National Park & Reserve
Kluane National Park is combined with Northern British Columbia’s Tatshenshini-Alsek Provincial Park and Alaska’s Wrangell St. Elias and Glacier Bay National Parks to form the world’s largest tract of protected land. This massive area of untouched wilderness has been dubbed Kluane/Wrangell-St.Elias/Glacier Bay/Tatshenshini-Alsek UNESCO World Heritage Complex. This area is home to the world’s largest non-polar glacier icefield, an active earthquake zone that averages 3 tremors a day (which largely go unnoticed) and has one of the most famous landmarks in the area – Canada’s tallest peak. Mount Logan, Canada’s tallest mountain, standing at 5,959 metres high is a must see for adventure seekers and one of the only ways to see this snow covered giant is by taking a flight like we did into the heart of the mountain range.
Getting to Kluane National Park & Reserve
Located in the southwest corner of the Yukon, 160 kilometres west of Whitehorse lies Kluane National Park & Reserve. Access to the national park from Haines Junction a good place to call basecamp for your adventures while in the area and it makes for easy access as it is located right on the Alaska Highway. There are multiple pulloffs along the Alaska Highway that are starting points for both day hikes and multi-day trips but to access the parks interior is not as easy as driving through it. Kluane National Park & Reserve’s interior is only accessible by a multi-day hike along rugged trails or by taking a flightseeing tour.
Where to Stay in Kluane National Park & Reserve
There is only a 39-site campground located at Kathleen Lake for accommodations within the park. The campground runs on a first-come-first-serve basis and reservations cannot be made ahead of time. All 39 spacious sites can accommodate tents and RV’s of all sizes. Amenities include bear boxes, pit toilets, water for cooking and views that are unlike any other place you have stayed before. To read all about our experience camping at Kathleen Lake click here!
What to do in Kluane National Park & Reserve
There are so many activities to do in the national park you could spend days here and not do them all! Of course all activities are outdoors but they can be done rain or shine if you choose. The hiking is by far the most popular activitiy to do in the park that range from 0.6km to 98km. A list of all the day and multi-day hikes can be found here on Parks Canada’s website.
Another great activity to do in the park if you have a few hours is take a flightseeing tour into the heart of the St. Elias Mountains. This is one of the only ways to see Kluane in its entirety and the best way to do it if you only have a few hours! We went up with Icefield Discovery and it was hands down one of the best experiences of our lives. Here is our photo guide of our tour with Icefield Discovery flightseeing over the St. Elias Mountains and landing on the world’s largest non-polar icefield in front of Mount Logan. Make sure to watch our video below of our trip up in the Helio Courier soaring 6000 feet in the air!