Parks Canada

For the love of dog, leash up!

Having dogs off-leash in the great outdoors can ruin a good time—for wildlife, dogs and the humans who love them both.

Racing the clock

The only rule that water seems to obey is that of gravity. Parks Canada collects water samples of The Dezadeash twice per season.

Know before you go

James Minifie maintains one of the Yukon region’s remote weather stations. The data provided by these units is used to help produce the avalanche forecast. PHOTO: Jennifer Coulter If record-breaking snowfalls and COVID-19 cabin fever have you charging for the hills, come to a full-spray stop and make sure you know how to keep yourself, …

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Silver Linings

Artists and Parks Canada heritage interpreters, Justin Apperley (left) and Miriam Behman, with their field camera Photography played a key role in the history and mythology of the Klondike Gold Rush. The photographer’s lens bore witness to the thrum and commotion of the stampede, along with the turmoil it wrought. The impacts of this era …

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Changes are not always welcome, even if they are historically accurate

Sometime before the beginning of winter, the old CIBC building on Front Street will turn grey and I’m quite certain that some people will be upset. The building has been going through changes since the town bought it for $170,000 back in 2013. I don’t think we had any idea how much potentially toxic material …

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Rope wreaths and Yukon steamers

Ruth Treskatis, volunteer and Janna Swales, executive director, proudly display their creations in front of the popsicle stick model of the SS Klondike at the Yukon Transportation Museum on Oct 15/18 What a history-packed day November 3, 2018, will be at our local Yukon Transportation Museum (YTM). The special activities start at 3 p.m. with …

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Google the Top of the World

Located on the northeastern corner of Ellesmere Island in Nunavut, Quttinirpaaq National Park is Canada’s northernmost national park. Until recently it was virtually inaccessible to your average earthling. Quttinirpaaq just became a bit more reachable with the completion of a partnership project between Parks Canada and Google Street View, which aims to increase access to …

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A decade of experiencing culture and heritage

The Yukon portion of Culture Days will happen at numerous locations around Whitehorse on the last weekend in September as part of a national effort to increase participation in arts and culture. The event was created in response to the success of Québec’s Journées de la culture weekend that first took place in 2007. Michelle …

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Magic in Tombstone

“Art Magic in Tombstone” is a series of workshops hosted by the Friends of Dempster Country society, and Yukon Parks, and will take place in Tombstone Territorial Park/ Ddhäl Ch’èl Cha Nän, throughout the summer.

Finding the keys to safer camping

On the Canada Day long weekend in 2012, the Congdon Creek Campground, located on the shore of Kluane Lake near Burwash Landing, played host to a furry teenaged visitor. A medium-sized grizzly found its way into the campground and proceeded to lounge around in the central meadow, feeding on the tasty flowers.

A spooky pre-Halloween evening

Dawson City’s Old Court House on Front Street will be the site for this year’s Haunted House event, a yearly offering to the community sponsored by Parks Canada. For many years the RCMP took the lead in providing this Halloween celebration, but four years ago they needed to step down. Janice Cliff, with Klondike National …

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It’s over: Dawson Winter

It’s September, and as the leaves start to turn and the streets become empty of tourists, transient workers who have lived in Dawson City for the summer are hitting the road out of town. Being a seasonal community, Dawson has seen its fair share of young people coming up for summer work. Some are old …

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Turn Your Eyes to the Skies

Yukoners – and others – who enjoy celestial pursuits may want to follow the stars to Kluane’s “Northern Nights” Dark Sky Festival at Kathleen Lake this weekend. This is the second time around for this event, which is jointly sponsored by Parks Canada and the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC). Viktor Zsohar is a …

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SOVA at 10

When talking about the location of the Yukon School of Visual Arts (Yukon SOVA) in Dawson City, two issues are often raised: What does the location do for students? What does it do for the town? Kyla McArthur, who works at SOVA as the administrative officer and is also a town councillor, spoke of the …

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Celebrating the Klondike’s Literary Legends

During the week that leads to the Discovery Days weekend, the Klondike Visitors Association, Parks Canada and the Writers’ Trust of Canada celebrate the writers who have made Dawson City world famous. Part of this event, called Authors on Eighth, is a writing contest that began in June and ended in July, in time for …

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There’s Gold in Those Buckets of Dirt

Canada Day will be exceptionally busy in Dawson this year. Combining our nation’s birthday with a roster of events that normally occur on the first Saturday after that celebration will make for a packed schedule. The Klondike Visitors Association decided a few years ago that having the Yukon Gold Panning Championships in the afternoon, following …

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Camping Etiquette

Winter has released his icy grip on the Yukon, and that brings my favorite season: camping season. In early May I along with several friends pitched our campers and tents at Lake LaBerge. We lucked out and got choice sites along the lakeshore. As we settled in with dinner on the fire and a beverage …

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Gold Show: The Rush is On

Early in May, with the deadlines for the 2017 edition of the Dawson City International Gold Show approaching, Coralee Rudachyk was busy, but calm. As the General Manager of the Dawson City Chamber of Commerce, she has the primary responsibility of making sure everything works out according to plan. The plan is a pretty solid …

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The Klondike Continues to Prepare for World Heritage Status

The nomination package has been prepared under the watchful eye of a local advisory committee, including representation from Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in, the City of Dawson, the Yukon Government, the Klondike Placer Miners Association and citizen reps from both Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in and the Dawson community. There is also a project management team, and much of the actual …

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Remembering Japanese Canadian Soldiers of WWI

Remembrance Day has taken more meaning for me lately.  Recently Yukon Archives shared some information about some Japanese from Dawson City who served in the First World War. This was a complete surprise to me. I wondered, Why would they serve? The Dawson Daily News of June 21, 1918 reported that there were five Japanese …

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The Yukon Culinary Festival Tells a Story of the Yukon, Through Food

The Yukon is filled with culinary hidden gems, according to Eric Pateman. A culinary expert, Pateman had no idea how rich the Yukon food scene was until Debra Ryan, manager of strategic planning for Air North, finally persuaded him to visit.  Now he is a main organizer of the Yukon Culinary Festival, running from August …

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Stories for Gold

Each year the Klondike Visitors Association works with the Writers’ Trust of Canada, Parks Canada, and the Dawson Community Library to put on the Authors on Eighth Walking Tour during the week before Discovery Days. Connected to that event is the annual Authors on Eighth Writing Contest, which challenges would-be authors to emulate the work …

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The Strange Story of Mary Hanulik Garden

Dawson City blooms in the summer. It’s a process that begins in some local commercial greenhouses and explodes after the horticultural booths at the Gold Show during Victoria Day Weekend in May. It then continues unabated as part of the Farmers’ Market during the summer, and employs several landscaping and gardening firms during the same …

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Celebrating Jack London’s Legacy

One of the stops along Dawson’s 8th Avenue Writers’ Block is Jack London Square, home of a part of Jack London’s Klondike cabin and the Jack London Museum, in a setting modeled after a painting by Jim Robb. This year marks the 100th anniversary of London’s passing and the Klondike Visitors Association is marking the …

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See The Yukon’s History Through Kids’ Eyes

My great great grandparents, Alexander Fraser and Jane Hastings Fraser left Dumfrieshire, Scotland in 1795. They settled in the Ottawa Valley with many Scottish immigrants. I have visited the cemetery near Renfrew, Ontario where they rest. In 2010, my sister, my husband and I traveled to Dumfrieshire, Scotland to walk in their footsteps. I love …

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Myth and Medium Focuses on Stories and Performance

This week shaped up to be a culturally ambitious one in Dawson City. The centerpiece of the week has been the Myth and Medium conference organized by the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in’s Heritage Department and focusing on the performing arts. It’s not too late to take in some of the culture. The week’s performance workshops continue on …

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Art Crawl Dawson Style

Blair Douglas and Carly Woolner are hoping you’ll join them outside to have some fun this weekend. They are organizing the second annual edition of The (s)hiver Winter Arts Festival, taking place in Dawson City on Jan. 30 and 31. “We want to get people out to celebrate when everything is shut down and quiet,” …

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Winning Awards with Husky Bus

Last month Jesse Cooke was the recipient of the Parks Canada Youth Tourism Entrepreneur Award, at a ceremony held in Ottawa on Dec. 2. Cooke arrived in the Yukon for the first time 10 years ago, studying glaciology at Kluane Lake as part of his University of Ottawa degree program. He says it was the …

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Twice A Day the Whistle Blows

It’s 5:00 and I’m sitting at the table in my summer office which, whenever possible, is our veranda. Seven blocks west and about two north the whistle mounted on the S.S. Keno lets loose with a blast that I can hear very clearly from here. It’s a tourist season feature, which Parks Canada arranges to …

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One River, Many Maps

At the beginning of his noon hour public lecture David Neufeld said he was working on his book but didn’t want to finish it because then he would lose his excuse to spend so much time on the Yukon River. He said when you say you’re working on a book, you get away with things. …

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Stay Safe in the Mountains

Michelle Christensen follows a routine before she heads to the backcountry for a day of skiing. It’s a safety routine, and it starts in her living room. She checks the weather and road forecasts, and logs into the Avalanche Canada website for trip reports — where skiers post conditions to a forum, like the Yukon …

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Myth and Medium are Coming Again

The bi-annual Myth and Medium symposium runs from February 24 to 28 this year, the week after the territorial Heritage Day holiday. Heritage Day originally inspired the idea of Myth and Medium about a decade ago. The first symposium tied in nicely with both a display of the Cameron Collection, brought here by Ken Lister …

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What is the Tr’ondëk-Klondike Project?

In two previous columns I have given some background behind Dawson City’s interest in UNESCO’s World Heritage Status designation. The Klondike region was placed on the national short list for this status in 2004, and I have outlined some of the earlier attempts to realize this goal. The latest project is called Tr’ondënk-Klondike: Future World …

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Proposing World Heritage Status for the Klondike

The headline on the front page of the July 24, 1997 edition of the Klondike Sun proclaimed, “Berton Proposes Dawson for World Heritage Site Status.” The Berton was Pierre Berton, of course, Dawson City’s most famous living son at the time and author of some 60 books. It wasn’t the first time anyone suggested the …

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Authors on Eighth

Taking a stroll along the Writers’ Block — from the corner of 8th Avenue and Hanson Street to the corner of 8th and Firth — you find yourself sandwiched between Berton House and Robert Service’s Cabin at the top end. Moving south and then west, you close the block at Jack London Square, with the …

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The Word is Art: Arts festival and publishing symposium take place in Dawson next weekend

The festival season isn’t over yet in Dawson City. From August 15-18, the 13th Annual Yukon Riverside Arts Festival will take place at various venues around town. The Festival features workshops, live music, guest lectures, artist talks, exhibitions, special events, public art projects and a gallery hop throughout the downtown core. Writers will also have …

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Federal Campground is Nice, Too

HAINES JUNCTION There are numerous campgrounds in and around Haines Junction. Your YTG Campground permit will let you camp at most of them … but the Kathleen Lake Campground is not one of them. The Kathleen Lake Campground is a federal campground that lies just inside the borders of the Kluane National Park: a “World …

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Signs, Signs, Everywhere Signs

Next week (March 25 to 27), we’re going to have the second instalment of last year’s popular Doors Open Dawson event, in which locals and visitors get to walk through a selection of Parks buildings, institutions, businesses and private homes that are not usually open to the public. Last year’s event was such a hit …

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Celebrating parks

“This is a celebration of all kinds of parks,” says Hillarie Zimmermann, external relations manager with Parks Canada. “Territorial parks, city parks, community parks … anywhere people enjoy the outside.” After 125 years of enjoying these parks, the 20th annual Parks Day will see celebrations across Canada on Saturday, July 17. With the help of …

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When Plaque is a Good Thing

Plaque is the subject of this week’s visit to A Klondike Korner. I’ve visited this subject before, but another one of our buildings is due to be plaqued on June 5, so it seems time to bring it up to date. Buildings, places or people that are plaqued by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board …

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Developing a Painless Pageant

BC Radio One has been running a survey to find out when people think it would be okay to play Christmas music, and a lot of the on-air replies seem to think that December 24 would be just fine. I suspect it’s not that people actually know the difference between Advent and Christmas, but that …

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A Celebration of Northern Words

I’m sitting in my trailer in Whitehorse as I type these words, but I can almost hear Buckwheat Donahue hoowwlliingg with delight all the way from Skagway, where I spent the last several days, attending the very first North Words Writers Symposium. Buckwheat likes to begin and end every event he’s involved in with a …

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Afternoon and Evening Delight on Commissioner’s Day

At the last of the Transients’ Weekly Suppers this year, one of the special speakers at the event made reference to the Commissioner’s Residence and the upcoming Tea and Ball, which take place there. At the word “commissioner”, blank looks passed over the faces of those summerdoughs who were here from Outside for the first …

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When the Whistle Blows

It seems only fair to warn strangers to the fair metropolis of Dawson City that there are certain hours of the day when it would be best not to be walking on or cycling past the boardwalk next to the S.S. Keno. This is especially true if you are easily startled. The hours in question …

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Klondike Catwalk

In a show of pre-season energy akin to athletes’ pre-game excitement, Parks Canada interpreters Carrie Docken and Carly Sims gallantly put on their copies of 100-year-old fashion and posed for What’s Up Yukon last week in Dawson City. Sims’ tea dress is a replica of the styles Martha Black and other Klondike pioneering women, of …

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A Dawson Virtual Tour

I discovered Google Earth a few years ago. Our son was spending the winter in Fort Nelson and we figured out that Google Earth would allow us to zoom in on the street where he was living, actually find the hotel and move, in a jerky, foreshortened way, between there and other places that he …

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Dawson and the Ted Harrison Effect

While doing what I call my Berton House exit interview with Sara Tilley, the latest writer-in-residence, she remarked that one of the things that made her feel comfortable and at home here was the colourful palette of our buildings. It reminded her of buildings in Newfoundland. That’s quite true. I noticed the colours, particularly in …

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Active Every Day

Dawson City has earned a place as the Yukon finalist for CBC’s “Live Right Now” competition, putting the town in the running to win a $100,000 “natural playground” courtesy of The Canadian Wildlife Federation, Bienenstock Natural Playgrounds and Parks Canada. Live Right Now is a CBC initiative launched in 2011 aimed at increasing the health …

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Picking the Greatest Klondiker

It has, unfortunately, been a number of years since a really top-notch piece of stagecraft graced the boards at the Palace Grand Theatre on a regular basis. Since the demise of the Gaslight Follies Parks Canada has been trying to find ways to bring people into this exciting old building and has sponsored a number …

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Putting the Giant to Rest

The Bonanza Creek Road winds through piles of dredge tailings—hills of gravel mounded like ground deposited by a gigantic earthworm—and abandoned, rusting mining equipment. This road was once the life vein of Dawson City. In the mid-20th century, the city was a supply centre for the dredges and the dredging community located at Bear Creek, …

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Dawson Blooms in the Summer

I managed to mow our lawn before the rain began to sprinkle this morning and was pleased to find that several of the dog damaged areas that I reseeded earlier in the summer no longer stand out as patches of bare earth. Indeed, the new grass there is greener and thicker than some of the …

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Staging Canada’s Parks

It’s a challenge trying to engage an audience in a meaningful celebration of all of Canada’s national parks, national historic sites, and national marine conservation areas in 40 minutes or less. But the award-winning Mountain WIT Theatre Troupe has proven that it is possible. Mountain WIT is a professional theatre troupe based in Banff National …

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How Others See Us PDF

It’s always interesting to learn how other people see us. Three creative spirits passed our way a couple of weeks ago and left us with some thoughts connected to our sense of place. Iain Baxter& said he thought the drive to Dawson was like living in a Monet painting. I would have picked one of …

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