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3 Reasons to Head to the Yukon to Enjoy Fall Adventures

There's more to the North than just the midnight sun and dog sledding opportunities.

By: Rachel B + Save to a List

Truth be told, summer ends a bit too abruptly in the land of the midnight sun. North of the 60th parallel, we experience a never ending daylight with high summer temperatures perfect for BBQ’ing and every sport imaginable during July and August. But with the blink of an eye, the 11PM daylight turns to darkness and the air begins to chill.

By the end of August and early September, the frosty temperatures overnight cause the endless wilderness landscape to become a patchwork of crimson reds and golden yellows that mix with the evergreens.

If you’ve never headed north or never experienced fall foliage, here is a quick list of three reasons why you should head to the Yukon in the autumn.

1. Vibrant Colours

Despite its northerly location, the types of flora the Yukon gets is extremely diverse. For the intrepid, the territory is actually one of the most diverse places in plant life for Canada due to being in three different plant regions: Boreal forests, the Beringia, and the western Cordillera mountain range.

So what does that mean for the photographer?

You can travel far and wide across the territory to enjoy arctic plant life that survived the ice sheets that once covered this area, over muskegs and bogs or places like the Labiche Valley that contain more than 10% of plants native to Canada.

From the capital of Whitehorse, there is easy access to fall foliage with sprawling trembling aspens that turn a brilliant gold, red stemmed willow bushes that turn a deep crimson, endless fireweeds becoming a fiery red, the blue-green spruce and fir trees that stand solemnly in a field of multicoloured lichen.

2. No Crowds

There is a feeling up North that I haven’t been able to get used to, that of silence and being alone. While living in Vancouver for five years, it was a rarity to have a trail all to ourselves. But up North, it is the opposite.

Expect to find yourself lost in a wilderness with no indication of humans for miles in any direction. The faintest sounds carry in a landscape filled with no unnatural sounds. The fresh air is crisp and an escape from civilization is easy.

And you’ll never have to figure out how to crop out that random person hogging the best vantage point.

3. Northern lights.

It’s true that as our days get shorter, the chance of viewing the aurora borealis becomes significantly better. Fall temperatures are far more comfortable than the -20 or -30s of the winter. So as the twilight turns to darkness, look up and seek out that shimmering green or violet that dances across the sky.

Witnessing a kaleidoscope of colour on a landscape day and night is sure to please even the well-travelled. 


Follow along as I explore the abundant wilderness of the Yukon in real time: @meandertheworld

We want to acknowledge and thank the past, present, and future generations of all Native Nations and Indigenous Peoples whose ancestral lands we travel, explore, and play on. Always practice Leave No Trace ethics on your adventures and follow local regulations. Please explore responsibly!

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