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10 Days Canal Road Tour Cycling Holiday in Canada

Ross River, Yukon Territory, Canada

Autumn Cycling Holiday Canada

Venture by bike to the northern fringe of the Rocky Mountains, in the remote Northeast Yukon! The Canol Road takes you through some of the most isolated and beautiful territories in North America. Ride on a historic World War Two pipeline access road to the border of the Northwest Territories. The winding route takes you through some of the most beautiful northern countries in the hemisphere. Bike past pristine lakes with loons calling and observe the relics of the road's World War Two past. View the scenic splendor of the autumn colors in vibrant reds and golds as well as watch the northern lights put on a show while a wolf howls in the distance.

Key information

  • Trip type: Guided
  • Lodging: Point to point
  • Terrain: Mostly unpaved and mountainous
  • Difficulty level: Challenging (cyclist needs to have a high level of fitness, must be an active rider, the terrain includes really challenging climbs/or 46-80 or more miles per day)
  • Total distance: approximately 293 miles / 470 kilometers
  • Bike types: Mountain bike (Available to rent / 850 EUR), Hybrid bike, Tandem bike

Highlights

  • Intimate environment
  • Explore seldom visited regions
  • Autumn colors and Northern Lights
  • Pristine wilderness of Northern Canada
  • Vehicle transportation and support
  • Inclusive of a mountain bike
  • 9 nights accommodation
  • Daily delicious meals

Skill level

  • Advanced

Styles


10 days with instruction
The maximum participants in the group is 8
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Accommodation

During this cycling holiday, you will have camping accommodations. Besides camping, guests will stay in a motel in Johnson's Crossing. Camping is an integral part of traveling through wild places. The remote routes in Yukon lack accommodations and services. They more than make up for it with stunning scenery, wildlife, and solitude.

With over 20 years of experience exploring and camping in the region, Sockeye Cycle has identified the best sites and know what gear is necessary for your comfort. Camping certainly does not mean a lack of amenities. They bring along all the necessities, along with some luxuries, to make your camping experience memorable.

They believe that spending nights under the stars is the perfect way to fully experience the unique landscapes that you travel through. They provide the gear and experience that makes camping relaxing and fun!

The sag wagon and trailer carries all the camping amenities you need. Those include waterproof tents, warm sleeping bags, thick sleeping pads, pillows, bug tents, and comfortable camp chairs.

Camping does not mean a lack of hygiene either. They even carry with a portable toilet and shower! They have screened gazebos for eating and relaxing to keep the bugs at bay when the wind is not blowing. They also provide comfortable camp chairs with side tables and mugs for hot drinks.

Settle along Ross River on night one.

Relax in your camp at the beginning of the North Canol Road on night two.

Unwind in the border of the Northwest Territories on nights three.

You will stay at camps on the way back to Yukon on nights four and five.

Make Lapie Canyon your home on night six.

Recharge in the Pelly Mountains on night seven.

Get comfortable along Quiet Lake on night eight.

Have a well-earned rest in Johnson's Crossing on night nine.

Program

During the World War Two, the US army constructed a road to bring oil from the Mackenzie River in the Northwest Territory to a refinery in Whitehorse. Two years after completion, the 176 million dollar project was abandoned. The dirt road is still seasonally maintained by the Canadian government.

Your journey will start in Whitehorse Yukon, Canada. You will travel by van to the Village of Ross River, Yukon and the start off the North Canol Road. After a night spent at the YTG campground, you will continue by van, up the North Canol to the subalpine splendor near Macmillan Pass.

You will spend an extra day exploring the area from the base camp and then head south on your bike back to Ross River, onto the South Canol Road, to Johnson's Crossing. The tour will be fully supported and consists primarily of comfortable wilderness camping. Camping will be the only option for exploring that part of the world but that does not mean a lack of comfort.

You will dine on Alaskan specialties like grilled sockeye salmon and halibut curry. You will be provided with a senior local guide who will inform you about the region and take care of your needs. The tour is a true northern adventure and wilderness experience!

Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival days

You will meet your group and guide in Whitehorse, Yukon, Canada in the morning. After an orientation and bike fitting, the van will head north on the Klondike and Campbell Highways to Ross River. You will spend the night at a YTG campground.

Day 2: Ross River – the North Canol Road

You will board the Pelly River ferry and cross with the van to the opposite shore where the North Canol Road begins. You will shuttle by van up the road and camp with a view of the Itsi Mountains, the northern end of the Rockies.

Day 3: North Canol Road - Northwest Territories (30 miles / 48 kilometers)

The day will be spent exploring the area by bike and relaxing in camp while enjoying the beautiful scenery and fall colors. The van will shuttle bikers to the Northwest Territories border for the ride back to camp. Rusty vehicle relics from the World War Two era will line the road.

Day 4: Northwest Territories (35 miles / 56 kilometers)

You will follow the river then climb over a ridge. The road will traverse the remains of an old forest fire that swept through the region. Fireweed will line the way as you leave the Continental Divide behind. You will camp by a lake.

Day 5: Northwest Territories (50 miles / 80 kilometers)

You will continue your southerly ride, coasting down and pedaling up short hills. You will spend the night at a quaint camp overlooking a small lake. The fire will be warm and comforting as another splendid meal will be prepared for you.

Day 6: North Canol Road – Lapie Canyon (35 miles / 56 kilometers)

The last day of riding on the North Canol Road will return you to Ross River and a hot shower. You can bike to camp or shuttle in the van from town to the YTG campground at Lapie Canyon.

Day 7: Lapie Canyon – Pelly Mountains (40 miles / 64 kilometers)

The route will ascend from the Lapie River Canyon to the start of the South Canol Road. You will turn right off the Campbell Highway and pedal your way south to the Pelly Mountains and camp by a lake.

Day 8: Pelly Mountains – Quiet Lake (55 miles / 89 kilometers)

Black spruce and willow will line the road as you skirt by small lakes and rivers, heading into the Pelly Mountains. The quiet and solitude of the country prevails. The night will be spent camping on the shore of Quiet Lake. Sitting by the fire will bring Robert Service’s prose to life.

Day 9: Quiet Lake – Johnson's Crossing (47 miles / 76 kilometers)

You will hop on the bikes for your last day of riding as you descend to Johnson's Crossing and a warm shower at the local motel.

Day 10: Departure day

After breakfast, the van will head to Whitehorse. You can reflect on your Yukon adventure and enjoy the beautiful scenery along the way. You can fly south that afternoon or make a hotel reservation for the night and extend your adventure in Yukon.

Bike rental options

Full suspension mountain bike

The full suspension mountain bike available is the Trek Fuel EX 27.5 and 29er mountain bikes for rent which are great for exploring single-track trails. Skagway offers extensive, purpose-built MTB trail systems a short drive up the road in the Yukon. It is available for 20 USD per hour and 85 USD per day. Discounts available for multi-day rentals.

Mountain bike or hybrid

It is the most popular rental bike. Hardtail mountain bikes or hybrid bikes are great options for exploring town and nearby trails. Specialized Hardrock Disc mountain bikes and Specialized Crosstrail and Ariel hybrids, with rear racks, are available for rent at 10 USD per hour or 45 USD per day. Discounts are available for multi-day rentals.

Salsa Fargo and Vaya dirt road bikes

Salsa Fargo and Vaya bikes are ideal for dirt road riding. The 20-mile out and back dirt road ride to from Skagway to Dyea is a good option for experienced cyclists. It is available for 15 USD per hour or 65 USD per day. Discounts available for multi-day rentals.

Tandem bicycle

Rent one of the Trek T-900 tandem bikes to cruise town in style. The bike is available at 15 USD per hour or 65 USD per day.

Skill level

Advanced

  • can cycle for 5-6 hours
  • extensive riding experience
  • assistance on demand (if required)
  • experienced with riding a variety of bicycles
  • comfortable with any terrain and weather conditions

Location

This cycling holiday will take place in Northeast Yukon, along the fringe of the Rocky Mountains, Ross River, the North Canol Road, the border of the Northwest Territories, Lapie Canyon, Pelly Mountains, Quiet Lake, and Johnson's Crossing in Canada.

Food

During this cycling holiday, you will be provided with meals from lunch on day one through breakfast on day 10, as well as snacks. You will dine in a screened tent and enjoy delicious meals such as local salmon or halibut, pasta, Thai curries, and even campfire barbecues prepared by your trip leader.

You will wake up in the morning to the smell of freshly brewed coffee and enjoy a hearty breakfast before hitting the road. Sockeye Cycle will cater to any of your specific dietary needs. They pride themselves on the freshly cooked food you will eat on the tours.

They resupply trips one to two times during the tour to ensure that you have fresh food. They also serve either a warm or cold breakfast, sandwiches and salads for lunch, and a variety of snacks for you to carry throughout the day.

The following meals are included:

  • Breakfast
  • Lunch
  • Dinner
  • Snacks

The following dietary requirement(s) are served and/or catered for:

  • Regular (typically includes meat and fish)
If you have special dietary requirements it's a good idea to communicate it to the organiser when making a reservation

What's included

  • 9 nights accommodation
  • Mountain bike
  • Services of a guide
  • Helmet (required)
  • Camping gear
  • Daily meals
  • Expert local leadership
  • Three meals and snacks for all tour days (excluding arrival and departure days)
  • Vehicle transportation and support
  • On-tour bike maintenance
  • Fees and permits for special sites
  • Safety equipment, training, and certification

What's not included

  • Airfare and travel to Canada
  • Lodging and meals for extra days
  • Insurance
  • Alcohol
  • Optional tipping to guides

Cancellation Policy

  • A reservation requires a deposit of 50% of the total price.
  • The deposit is non-refundable, if the booking is cancelled.
  • The rest of the payment should be paid 60 days before arrival.
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