I’m sure that most of you are aware of the little yellow trolley that chugs along the waterfront every summer. But what you may not be familiar with is the other Whitehorse Railway attraction.
The Miles Canyon Historic Railway Society, in addition to running the waterfront trolley, operates the Copperbelt Railway and Mining Museum located on the Alaska Highway approximately two kilometres north of the airport.
If you have never been, there is no better time than on Copper King Day. The museum will have free balloons for the kids and several special festivities related to the history of the copperbelt.
For those of you not aware of the history of the area, this is the perfect opportunity to beef up your local history knowledge and gain a better understanding of why local subdivisions in the area were named as they are.
The day’s events play tribute to the discovery of copper in the area just north of Whitehorse where rumours of copper outcrops led John McIntyre and William Granger to establish the Copper King and Copper Queen claims which started a copper rush.
Over 1,000 claims were staked in the area establishing Whitehorse as much more than just a stopping point on the way to the Klondike.
The museum features mining-related artifacts, photographic displays and models of the mining area and is sure to teach even the most avid history buff a thing or two.
Once the trip through the museum is complete, it’s all aboard for the 1.8-kilometre ride on a two-foot mining track that runs through the 10-acre park.
Visitors are pulled behind mining engines called “Lok-ies” on a passenger car with open sides and a canvas top so you can enjoy the breeze through your hair as the little engines pull you through the boreal forest setting.
You can bring your lunch and make a day of your trip as the site also has a picnic area with a covered pavilion and a play area for the kids.
Copper King Day is taking place at the Copperbelt Railway and Mining Museums, Saturday June 7, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. All are welcome.
This column is provided by the Yukon Historical & Museums Association.