A Backpacking Trip to Remember – Unforgettable & Spectacular
In the Yukon Territory in the Canadian north lies a beautiful National Park, the largest Canada has to offer. The Slims River pours ice cold water into the western end of the Lake. This is the site where the two ends of the Alaskan Highway were joined together by the crews working from both ends. It is also one of the most spectacular areas on earth. Huge mountains surround the emerald green lake and the greenery covering the valley.
Just past the north end of the bridge you will find a Park Information Center located at the base of Sheep Mountain. From this location in the summer you most likely see some of the hundreds of wild Sheep who make the mountain their home, and thus the name Sheep Mountain. The sheep are pure white but not albino as you would suspect.
We tented in a campground on the beach one night. Well it was night time but the northern sun keeps daylight up until after eleven pm or later at that latitude and dawn is around four am. Next day we hiked to the top of the mountain. It is a tough climb but upon reaching the top you are treated to one of the most spectacular sights you will ever witness. The day we did it the wind was very light. The white clouds reflected in the emerald colors of the calm waters were enough to blow your mind.
We sat amid millions of tiny wild flowers and had our well earned lunch. Although we sat at 6,400 feet elevation, another mountain raised across the valley to an unknown height. The slopes were bare and almost vertical with perhaps a half dozen patches of green grasses showing. Wherever we looked we saw sheep. We counted over one hundred. Ewes with lambs as well as about twenty five rams who sat well apart and away from the ewes. We called the males the senate.
After lunch we set off down into the creek area, following it for a couple of miles where we finally came across a feint trail. Almost every foot of the creek bed was covered with purple flowers. Away in the distance we could see a huge valley filling glazier that accounted for the water in the Slims river and the lake itself.
We had been warned by the parks people about the presence of grizzlies in the area. A few days before a mother and two cubs were spotted in the lower part of the trail from the old roadway down to the river. We made certain to use our cooking pot and a spoon as a percussion drum in order to let any bear know we were on our way through their territory. Bears no not want to meet people, especially when they have cubs they want to protect. Their only defense is offence and you do not want to be there.
If you only have one place to see in your lifetime go backpacking to this area. You will never regret it.
Joe and Irma MacMillan have spent many years backpacking, skiing, and simply enjoying life in the mountains of British Columbia. Their website
http://whistler-outdoors.com”>http://whistler-outdoors.com is full of tips on snowboarding, camping, kayaking, rafting, camp cooking and fishing. They met on a blind date in 1957 and are still married. Take a look at their story here