One way to experience the wildlife of the north is to take a safari tour through the Yukon Wildlife Preserve. It’s a terrific opportunity to experience the unique wildlife, often only found in Yukon and the Northern Territories. Only 20 minutes out of Whitehorse, you get the chance to get up and close with some of Yukon’s wildlife. Caribou is one of those animals that migrate all the way through Yukon. They move all around the country in a big migration. There are up to ten other species in the area, such as mule deer, musk ox, mountain goat, arctic fox, lynx, dall sheep, and the mighty moose.
The mule deer are gorgeous – and they get their name from the horse-like ears atop their heads. There have been a number of fawns born recently and as the fawns grow they are simply beautiful -- a pleasure for kids and adults like to behold.
One of the more fascinating creatures here is the lynx, a large bob-tailed cat that traditionally hunts arctic rabbits. There are new kittens here and to watch them play and hunt through the long grass is a treat.
The arctic foxes are another amazing creature. You get a real sense of their playfulness and closeness as they rarely leave each other’s side.
To describe the Musk Ox as unusual would be fitting. Looking a little like a cross between a bison and a cow, they are native to the Canadian Arctic and are ancient creatures, surviving since the last ice age. Their lumbering walk, long woolly coats and drooped heads belie the fact that at full gallop, they can reach speeds approaching 40 kilometres an hour. Try and outrun one of these!
One type of animal you’d expect to see in these parts would be mountain dwelling sheep and goats, ideally adapted to the terrain. Dall Sheep, ranging in colours for white to slate brown is easily identifiable by their curved yellowish brown horns.
Mountain goats may not have the same large horns but they are razor sharp. When agitated, the male mountain goat stiffens his body, looking almost ape like, he parades around warning any potential threat he’s prepared for a fight.
The moose is the largest of all the deer family. And I was fascinated to learn those enormous antlers are shed every year and new ones grow. They are also great swimmers with the ability to dive 5m under the water and to swim 17km in a single stretch.
This place is fantastic -- this is a place to come and put in at least half a day here. It is open all year round, and you can even cross-country ski here in winter.
For more information about the Yukon Wildlife Preserve, visit: Yukon Wildlife Preserve
Inn on the Lake
Visiting Yukon doesn't mean you have to sacrifice comfort when it comes to the amazing wildlife and rugged scenery.
You can do it in style and Inn on the Lake is a terrific example.
This is a spectacular log cabin, overlooking a beautiful lake. The moment you step into Inn on the Lake, it's yours to enjoy. Whether you want to grab a book and have a read in the reading room, or go canoeing or fishing, you really can go at your own pace.
In the summer, it stays light all the way up to midnight (you can get a midnight tan!) or during the winter; you can appreciate the magnificent northern lights. There are so many things to do here, including enjoying some amazing food.
For more information about Inn on the Lake, visit: Inn on the Lake
Gourmet Dining - Yukon
No matter where you go, food is always a touchstone, and we’ve discovered how the Yukon is establishing a culinary identity despite having one of the shortest and coldest growing seasons in the world.
Wheelhouse Restaurant sources as much local produce as possible in his restaurant Wheelhouse Restaurant.
His chef Rob showcases the best of local produce, using meats such as bison and elk. Each of the creations is paired with a local beer from the Yukon Brewing Company.
Atmosphere of the restaurant is amazing, and has the Yukon stern-wheeler theme provides some history, complimented by the 1930s decor.
Art Webster vision has certainly been realised both out here in the dining room and in the kitchen, thanks to Rob and his team. The superb menu showcasing the best of local produce has to be the most unexpected bonus of our trip to the Yukon…Whitehorse as a culinary destination? Watch this space!
For more information about Wheelhouse Restaurant, visit Wheelhouse Restaurant