How wonderful would it be if a hiking trail starts right from the downtown of a city? If that’s a question, look no further than the City of Whitehorse. There are many trails it has to offer which begins right from the heart of the city.
The Millennium Trail is one of the most famous and most visited trails by tourists of all ages. It begins on the south end of the downtown, right behind the S.S. Klondike National Historic Site. This site in itself is very well known among the tourists. There were two sternwheelers named S.S. Klondike, the second one is now a national historic site. It is the largest sternwheeler that ran freight between Whitehorse and Dawson City, along the Yukon River.
The Millennium Trail Details
|Total Distance||4.5 km|
|Elevation Gain||52 m|
The Millennium Trail is an easy flat walk among the nature the city has to offer. It is pet friendly, wheelchair accessible and can be visited in any season. Going in a counterclockwise direction, initial 1.3 km of the trail runs parallel to the Robert Service Way with great views of the Yukon River on your left. There are several species of birds that fish here and it’s a great spot for bird watching and wildlife photography.
Next, the trail passes through the Robert Service Campground. There is a small detour towards Bert Law Park. A small bridge, over the Yukon river, takes you to the 0.6 km loop on Bert Law Park. Here, all city noise is muted and it feels as if you’re far away from the city. On completing the loop, you can return back to the Millennium Trail via the same bridge.
Continuing further, you will soon reach the Rotary Centennial Bridge that’ll take you to the other side of the river. At this point, you have completed half loop.
The Millennium Trail continues to the left. But, I strongly recommend to take a small detour to your right towards the Whitehorse Fish Ladder and the Whitehorse Dam. It’s about 0.5 km walk to the dam. If the dam is open, you may also find locals paddling in the rapids. It’s a great spot to learn and improve your paddling skills.
Adjacent to this dam, there is a small trail going up to a lookout point to the dam (pictured above) and to Schwatka Lake (pictured below) in the south. Return back the same way you came up to join the Millennium Trail again.
Remaining half of the trail is along the grassy area with several wild berry plants growing on both sides. Do not eat wild berries unless you’re sure which one is it. One of the berry species growing in this region is highly poisonous.
The loop ends with crossing the bridge and you’ll be back at the S.S. Klondike National Historic Site.
If you have hiked this trail, leave a comment about your experience and also add if I may have missed anything. If you are planning to visit Whitehorse, or need more information about various hiking trails, shoot me an email provided at the bottom of this page. I will be glad to provide you with some information about hiking in Whitehorse and around.
S.S. Klondike sits besides the Rotary Park on the southern end of downtown, at the intersection of 2nd Avenue and S Access Road. The Millennium Trail loop starts right behind the sternwheeler. It is within the walking distance from the Main Street. There is also ample parking space at this site.