Nares Mountain


Distance: 8 km
Elevation Gain: 1000 m (3281 ft)
Time: 4.5 hours
Difficulty: Moderate
Region: Carcross
Date Added: March 9, 2012
Last Update: March 9, 2012
Winter: snowshoeing 



Nares Mountain is a beautiful ridge hike that can be enjoyed almost all year round! The slopes are often bare as they are south facing and wind scoured, and of course the proximity to the Carcross desert means much less precipitation. The views are stunning in all directions, and include Montana and Caribou mountains, and Tagish, Bennett and Nares lakes.


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Photos
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Winter



Driving Directions

From Carcross take the Tagish Road north-east for 2 kms until you see a green sign for Choutla Subdivision on your right. Take this road through the subdivision, staying on the main road for 1 km until you reach a narrower road leading off to the right called Blattas Point Rd (there is a big yellow dead end sign). Follow this road for 2 kms to the very end where it ends at a private driveway. Park in a small parking area on your right beside the driveway.




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Trail Description

Note that this route follows up the left ridge to the summit, and while not the true summit of Nares Mountain (which lies due north), this route is more accessible and the views are arguably more dramatic from this vantage above the lakes.

From the parking area, head up the gentle open slope to the northeast, making your way to the base of the mountain in front of you. You're aiming for the left ridge, and you may see a path that leads to the right ridge, but don't follow the path. Stay on the left side of the main gully that comes down from the mountain and towards the lake, passing through a willow and poplar stand at the base of the mountain. The open ridge stretches out in front of you and the climbing begins!

Once on the ridge, the route is straightforward as you essentially follow it to the summit. Some side sloping may be required along the south flanks/right side of the ridge in order to avoid any treed areas or unnecessary ups and downs. Once at the top there is a plateau that stretches off in several directions each offering a different perspective. From the main high point there are great 360 degree views. Towards the southwest of the summit, there is a little rocky point that looks down to Nares Lake and across to Montana Mountain. There's also another point to check out to the southeast with great views of Tagish Lake, Bove Island, and Lime Mountain (with it's distinctive light-grey dolostone and limestone rock face).

Sheep and deer can be seen on the summit. Once you've finished exploring, enjoy the view on the way down by returning on the same route you came up.


Winter

The Blattas Point Rd is often plowed in the winter, but keep in mind if it's not you will have to walk the 2 kms to the trailhead. Follow the same route as the summer route described above. As mentioned earlier, much of the ridge is bare for the most part through the winter; however it may depend on the time you choose to go and how the weather has been (i.e. new snow, strong south winds and sun). The deepest snow you would likely encounter is at the base of the mountain in the poplar and willow stand. Snowshoes shouldn't be necessary; however, at least gaters would be useful in keeping any snow out of your boots. The summit itself is fairly windswept with hard packed snow and again snowshoes should not be necessary.

Elevations

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Comments / Trip Reports

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Jessica
June 29, 2017

That was one of the best trail I ever did ! Really steep but the wiw worthed it !!
kyliestravel
May 28, 2017

We hiked in quite a big group on Sunday 14th May. There were only a couple of small patches of snow left. We did spot a mum and 2 cubs on the right ridgeline prior to the hike.
We were lucky with no wind at the summit, but was quite overcast
Glenda
May 3, 2017

The trail was almost completely free of snow on the north ridge and mostly free on the south ridge yesterday. You might want to ascend and descend on the same side rather than doing the loop. We could walk on top of the snow, but others had sunk deep on a warmer day.
Shannon Wyers
April 18, 2017

Please be bear aware!! My friend and her hiking partners spotted a sow and her two cubs approximately 1 km up Nares Mountain on Saturday, April 15. 🐻
Alison
April 18, 2017

Hiked Nares Mountain on Saturday April 15th. Lower half is clear, but higher elevations had sections of snow that we had to go through, and a lot was soft so we sank in a number of times - knee deep or higher often. We climbed to about 1 km from the summit; hikers ahead of us said the last section to the summit was unavoidable knee deep snow, and we didn't have the right gear on for that. Took us 5.5 hours with a snack break, lunch break and many stops to enjoy the views and catch our breath!
Jo
October 30, 2016

Hiked Nares Mt on Sun Oct 30th. Good trail up to treeline in dusting of snow with snow increasing to up to 40cm in pockets at different spots once on the ridge. Tons of sheep track and bedding sites but no sightings. Always impressed how quickly one gets up in the alpine with amazing views around here. Great hike!
Kat
September 14, 2016

Trail was great! once you get up to the top there is a lot to see! It took us 6 hours to go up and down, but we stopped a lot to enjoy the fall colours. Great hike but next time I am bring poles.
Tatlow
September 3, 2016

Fine day on Mt. Nares out of Carcross. Snowstorms on Caribou and Montana mountains but we just had light showers. Trail is in good shape and the fall colours are lively.
Geana
August 28, 2016

Hiking Nare this weekend and wondering if there are creeks/streams on the way for dog water.
Bob
June 20, 2016

Hiked up Nares Ridge on Sunday June 19, 2016. A beautiful sunny day, but windy. Got to the top after 2 hours. We then turned north and headed over to the true summit of Mt Nares, the middle of the three mountains in the distance north. It looks far but is less than 3 km distant. Dropped down 200 meters, then skirted the first mountain on a faint trail. Once around this you aim towards the saddle between the first mountain and Nares Mtn and then climb straight up Nares Mtn. Nice view of Crag Lake at the top. We then headed back the same way but this time stayed low to intersect the trail on the Nares ridge well down from the top. Then back down the ridge on the main trail. The whole trip was 12.6 km with 1390 meters total elevation gain. Bring poles!
Jason
May 12, 2016

Climbed Nares on Wednesday (11 May 2016) and enjoyed the rare Carcross wind free day. Trail was completely dry, and the snow patches left on top are rapidly diminishing. 3.25 hours up and 1.5 hour down. No other cars in the parking lot and no other hikers encountered. Lots of signs of sheep and caribou, but no sightings. No bear scat spotted, but the lower treed sections are now out in leaf so make some noise as you can't see far in some areas.
Axel
April 6, 2016

awesome hike! picked a sunny day and it took only 3.5 hours to hike up, eat lunch at the top and come all the way back down. windy at the top though.
Ramtin
March 14, 2016

I need to shoot at sunrise and sunset... that means i have to stay up there a night... is low-impact camping allowed up there?
Skye
January 2, 2016

January 1st 2016 accent, 5 guys, all in their Fifties. 0 degrees C. Winds up high gusting to 50 km. Some sun. Did not take our snowshoes, achieved the summit and returned to cars in 5 1/2 hours. Some sloughs along the way
Awesome views all around, Bennett Lake not frozen.
Don and Anne
July 11, 2015

We hiked up Nares Mountain on July 6, 2015, following the left hand ridge up and down. The total distance according to the GPS was 8.5 km. We left the car at 10:10 AM and were back at 4:40 PM. We spent nearly an hour at the summit.

We enjoyed the open ridge walking and the views.

On the way down we found a personal electronics device snagged on a willow branch. If you lost something on Nares Mountain, please send a note describing the device to yukonhiking.ca via the Contact Us link at the bottom of the page.

We saw a little black bear about 3/4 of the way back down. He was ahead of us. First he was crossing a clearing about 200 meters below us. The second sighting he was beside the trail about 100 m below us scratching his chin on a poplar tree. Then he went down into a creek valley. The trail parallels the creek though some thick shrubbery so we moved through there making lots of noise and with the bear spray at the ready. Nothing bad happened, and on the third sighting the bear was high up on the opposite bank of the creek, continuing his trek.
Dan B
June 5, 2015

Hiked Nares May 31st. All clear from top to bottom. We went up the left side and down the right side. We were told the right side was shorter? What I can say is you spend less time in the trees by going left but the views on the right are much nicer when you get them. Personally I prefer a loop so do both!
Deborah Baerg
May 19, 2015

So Freakin Happy we made it to the top - WOW What a View - So Much Fun with My Friends Rika & Sandra - My first hike since 2001 - Sore feet and legs on the way down OOCH !! But would do it again in heart beat :) !!
Paul
May 16, 2015

Great day today. We went up the right hand ridge (closest to the lake) and down the left side. Views were spectacular. Caribou on the top!
CR
May 12, 2015

Great hike, no snow! Did lose the trail at one point and also saw a mother grizz and cub on the same slop as us so be careful at this time of year! The Blattas Point Rd is very hidden so you may miss the road but once you're on the road you will see it a couple meters down, other than that a very nice hike!
Leah, Rian, Erin, Chayse, Steph, Reta
April 17, 2015

We did this hike April 11th.
Beautful day! The route is free from snow as it is south facing.
Its not a difficult hike, but it is steep once you come out from the trees. It has shale in spots and there is only small brush patches. Nothing to hold on to for the steep descent. Its a bit intimidating looking at your walk down but the views of nares lake and carcross are amazing!
I recommend a direct route up (I say route as there is no defined trail)and walk a switch back on the way down as it can be hard on the knees. Snow patches are fun to slide down though!

The road in was a bit slick but all our vehicles made it in.

Beauty hike!
Nick Woz
December 31, 2014

Had quite the experience today attempting to hike Nares. With higher temperatures we thought it would be a great day to do it. Upon reaching the the parking area we decided to drive off the road a bit so to make room for the locals to pass, unfortunately we ended up getting stuck just a few feet off the road. I do recommend (in the winter) that you come with a 4x4 or chains and a shovel. The road may be maintained but as soon as you leave the road to park you're pretty much SOL.

A local was extremely generous and helped us get unstuck. After a few laughs and smiles we found out that since this hike has been on this site many people venture this way at all times of the year. The local admitted to helping many people get unstuck (it felt kinda good to not be the only one!). I do want to say this person was very kind and understanding. Please consider the locals when you hike this trail, be mindful that they live in this area.

We made it about 3/4 the way up before it got a little late and dark. It was still worth it despite getting stuck. With snow in the forecast we'll all have to wait a bit until being able to safely park at the trailhead.

Happy Hiking!
Deb
December 28, 2014

Has anyone been up here lately? Just wondering if the road is cleared?
Barrett Horne
August 28, 2014

Great hike--weather cooperated, making it a perfect day for a strenuous hike, though perhaps not so good for photographs (mostly overcast). Saw a grizzly on the way up--and upon our return near car park site, with a cub. Explains her reluctance to head the opposite direction when she saw us (about 30-40 metres from us at moment of sighting). We were cautious and were able to put distance between us, giving her a wide berth. Glad we had bear spray, of course. Saw some caribou from the top as well as six sheep across the valley. Trail is not evident on some parts, but straight forward to stay on the ridge and keep heading up. And up.
Sue D.
July 13, 2014

Finally hiked Nares! Did it yesterday. It started off rainy and then the clouds lifted! We had to keep to the east ridge due to a black bear lingering on the west ridge. The hiking poles were useful. The black flies were annoying and biting. The wind at the top was a nice reprieve. Stunning views and well worth it! I was in awe of the abundance and variety of wildflowers. There were quite a few different mushrooms too. A really cool hike and one of my new favorites!
Brian
June 14, 2014

Hiked Nares today (20140614) Good description on the web site, but even better trail (and views) on the ridge closer to Nares Lake (see attached image)
Cal
June 7, 2014

Solo hiked the mountain on June 5th. Amazing views throughout! Hiking poles are highly recommended.. I didn't bring any and regretted it. :)
Summitslayer
June 5, 2014

Great hike up the mountain today! So much sunshine !! Spotted two sheep from the summit, 4 hr rnd trip (moving time), doesn't include nap)
Lindsay
June 1, 2014

First climb of "summer." Beautiful day with strong 50 km winds on the ridges. That didn't affect the views! Wow! No other hikers to be seen, but lots of early spring flowers. About 5 hours round trip with lots of wandering around on the plateau to max out on the sightseeing.

Thanks for the good guidance.
Manu
May 11, 2014

Found a jacket on the way back, just leave a note here or contact me through the admin.
Meghan
April 20, 2014

Had a beautiful and sunny day up on Nares this Saturday. It was a little windy near the top and on some parts of the ridge. We left our snowshoes in the car, and were happy we did, as most of the ridge was snow free and the top only had a few inches in most places.

We saw several sheep, white-tailed ptarmigan, a dusky grouse, and two northern harriers. You could also hear the trumpeter swans down on the lake.

We took just under 5 hours, as we were in no rush. Stopped by Caribou Coffee in Carcross for a latte on the way home.
David
April 14, 2014

We hiked Nares Mountain this weekend. It was a strenuous hike, but well worth it! Thanks YukonHiking.ca for helping us to discover it! It took us a little under 6 hours return, with several rest breaks and a couple of longer snack breaks (20 minutes + each). The bottom half of the hike was largely free of snow, even though its still pretty wintery. In the top half of the hike there were increasing patches of snow until near the top where there was continuous snow cover for the last few hundred meters.

We brought snowshoes but left them in the car because the way looked clear. There were a few spots higher up where we broke through the crust into deep now and snowshoes would have been good, but overall we were fine with just gators.

We saw a few ptarmigan and plenty of animal tracks. The views of the lakes and surrounding mountains from the top were amazing!

The way down was a bit jarring due to snow and sections with loose rocks. Overall, a great hike well worth it for the views! I think 4.5 hour would be too little time to really enjoy the views and take a few breathers. I recommend allotting six hours to really get the most out of it.

Sophie
August 4, 2013

Beautiful hike! We hiked up by the right ridge, and came down by the left one, and it took 7h total (1h of rest at the top), so it might be a little more than 8 km if you don't come back by the same way you came up. Congratulations for this website, very useful information. We consult it at least once a week and all the information is very exact and relevant! Thank you for doing this, otherwise I don't think we could find all these trails by ourselves.
Deb
March 3, 2013

hiked/snowshoed up Nares yesterday. Road has been plowed to the trailhead. Alot of snow. Beautiful views! Should be easier for the next people now. Enjoy!
Peter
October 2, 2012

Nares Mountain - a wonderful day hike we did end of August this year! There is an alternative route to the top following the RIGHT RIDGE up to the summit. Start at the same parking lot, and after about 200 yards the trail branches. If you continue straight you will end up on the trail described, if you branch to the right and cross the creek bed (which further up becomes the distinct gull). Always stay close to the ridge line, out of the trees where you can, there is in many parts a quite distinct trail following all the way up. Look for it, and do not get fooled into following game trails down into the gully. We think hiking up the "South Ridge" and coming down the described trail makes a perfect hiking day on Nares Mountain!
Jenny
August 13, 2012

Hiked up for a beautiful view from the top and over the back looking towards Bove Island. Lots of switchbacks, especially on the way down (sore knees!) but we found a path through the trees on the north side half way up that we followed for a short while that helped us avoid a particularly steep rocky section on the ridge. We were looking for animals, but all we saw were some slow-moving ptarmigans.

Thanks for the hike listing :)
Yukon Hiking
July 28, 2012

Good catch Michael and Alastair. We had originally (mistakenly) marked this hike as Easy, and recently changed it to Moderate. Some may find it even Difficult, so we will elaborate on all of our ratings.
Alastair Cook
July 28, 2012

Sorry about the spelling mistakes in my posted comment......recommended it should be (last sentence)
I also had a thought about the level of difficulty listed for the hikes on this web site. I've discovered that something listed as moderate can be difficult for me, so perhaps a little elaboration is necessary for older folks such as myself.
Alastair Cook
July 28, 2012

I am 59 years old, and in good health, and enjoy walking / hiking with my wife. On July 28 we made our first ever hike up Nares Mountain. I'm afraid we only got half way up...where the ridge officially begins. Fairly tough slogging for me especially. By the time we got back down it had taken us around 4.5 hours...and we were pretty tired, but I have to admit it was well worth it. No pain no gain as they say. It's definitely a recommded hike, but you have to be in fairly good shape..and preferably younger!
Michael White
July 17, 2012

Hiked Nares two weekends ago. Have always wanted to get up there and then coming across this site and directions for Nares...what an incredible view of the lake system from up there. Gorgeous. We walked up the left ridge and down the right. Think it rates a "moderate" rating as it's very similar height/time/distance as Caribou though it's rated as "medium". Thanks!
Pippa
May 29, 2012

We hiked up the ridge on the right (south) side of the gully on Sunday, then across the summit and back down the route described here. The route we took up involved quite a lot of (easy) bushwhacking through groves of trees and one tricky scramble to get around a big snow patch, but still lots of great views and open areas. Crocuses still out!
Jen
April 14, 2012

The access road was a bit muddy but absolutely drivable. Trail was great--some deep snow to walk through at the beginning in the trees, and in some sections near the top. But the rest of the trail was free of snow and wonderful to hike. We saw our first crocuses of the season!
Deb
March 31, 2012

awesome hike today. road up to trailhead was plowed and hard packed although with this melt, next weekend might not be so good. Didn't quite make it to the top but we could see that there is still snow up there. We used snowshoes for the first bit but could have done without although boots and socks were wet. all in all, a beauty day. Thanks Yukon Hiking!