Kluane National Park

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Auriol - Martha Black Circuit

Distance: 12 km
Elevation Gain: 888 m (2913 ft)
Time: 6 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

This circuit route takes you off the beaten track of the popular Auriol Trail, taking you across a moraine, up to a mountain saddle, down a glacier and across a beautiful alpine plateau. This hike is best suited to setting up a base camp at the Auriol Trail backcountry campground or somewhere higher in the alpine.

Auriol Peak

Distance: 9 km
Elevation Gain: 1267 m (4157 ft)
Time: 6 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

Auriol Peak is an impressive rocky peak, perched high between Quill Peak and Mount Martha Black within the Auriol Range. This route is accessible from the popular Auriol Trail in Kluane, and is best combined with camping at least one night either at the Auriol Trail backcountry campground or further into the alpine.

Auriol Trail

Distance: 15 km
Elevation Gain: 367 m (1204 ft)
Time: 4.5 hours
Difficulty: Easy

The Auriol Trail is close to Haines Junction and is a popular day and overnight hike. The actual trail itself does not go above tree level, but an extended hike from the trail into the alpine is highly recommended.

Bock's Lake

Distance: 24 km
Elevation Gain: 1017 m (3337 ft)
Time: 2-3 days
Difficulty: Moderate

Bock's Lake is tucked in amongst mountains and moraines. Hiking up Bock's Creek isn't difficult and camping at the lake is a great multi-day trip. The views from the side trips above Bock's Lake are incredible.

Bock's Lake to Congdon Creek

Distance: 55 km
Elevation Gain: 1017 m (3337 ft)
Time: 4-5 days
Difficulty: Moderate

This route connects Bock's Lake to Congdon Creek via the Duke River. It requires some route finding, but it is a fantastic hike through some amazing terrain in Kluane National Park.

Bullion Plateau

Distance: 22 km
Elevation Gain: 915 m (3002 ft)
Time: 8 hours
Difficulty: Moderate

This trail follows an old road up into the alpine, ending above the Sheep Creek valley. The road is long but the ascent is gradual and aside from its length is an easy hike. The views along the trail stretch down the Slims River valley all the way to the toe of the Kaskawulsh glacier. At the end of the trail, Red Castle Ridge and the Sheep Creek valley are an added reward.

Congdon Creek

Distance: 26 km
Elevation Gain: 661 m (2169 ft)
Time: 1-2 days
Difficulty: Moderate

Congdon Creek winds its way into the mountains. It is a great way to explore deeper into Kluane. You could hike this as a long day trip, but it is much better as an multi-day trip, and you can even connect to the Bullion Plateau trail or the Bock's Lake trail.

Cottonwood Trail

Distance: 75 km
Elevation Gain: 530 m (1739 ft)
Time: 4 days
Difficulty: Moderate

This multi-day trail circles through and around the Dalton Range in Kluane National Park. The trail can be hiked or skied from either end, although if you are skiing it, starting at the Mush Lake side allows you to keep the wind at your back when you reach Kathleen Lake. There is a mountain pass to climb during the middle of the trip, but the elevation gain isn't difficult. The view of the impressive Dalton Range mountains almost never leaves your sight.

Dalton NW7

Distance: 16 km
Elevation Gain: 1375 m (4511 ft)
Time: 8.5 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

This is a fun hike for those looking for something more challenging than your typical hike. This route follows the same trail as King's Throne but takes you to a higher, more rocky summit with some amazing views. It is definitely not for those scared of heights or rock scrambling, as you get a heavy dose of both of these and at many times it feels more like a 'climb' than a 'hike'.

King's Throne

Distance: 15 km
Elevation Gain: 1250 m (4101 ft)
Time: 8 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

The King's Throne is truly a majestic site when viewed from the shores of Kathleen Lake. It looks as if you would need to be a mountaineer with ropes to climb it - but in reality it is not that bad, and is indeed a popular day hike. The views of the surrounding valleys and Kathleen Lake are absolutely breathtaking.

Mount Archibald

Distance: 29 km
Elevation Gain: 1950 m (6398 ft)
Time: 15 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

Mount Archibald is the highest point in a group of mountains between the Dezadeash River and the Jarvis River. The southeast ridge is an interesting scramble with views of surrounding glaciers. The summit offers a view down into the Kluane Icefields, including Mount Logan.

Mount Decoeli

Distance: 14 km
Elevation Gain: 1324 m (4344 ft)
Time: 9 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

Mount Decoeli is one of the highest peaks you can see from around Haines Junction and the highway. On a clear day you get a sweeping view of mountains, valleys, and icefields.

Mount Martha Black

Distance: 36 km
Elevation Gain: 1705 m (5594 ft)
Time: 16 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

Mount Martha Black is the highest peak within the Auriol Range, accessed via the Auriol Trail. This route is an excellent entry level mountaineering trip with varied terrain and a variety of skills required - glacier travel and up to Class 5 scrambling (rope, harnesses and helmets a must). It's a fair distance to cover (both horizontally and vertically), best completed with overnight stays in the beautiful alpine flower covered plateau.

Observation Mountain

Distance: 22 km
Elevation Gain: 842 m (2762 ft)
Time: 8-10 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

The view of the Kaskawulsh Glacier from the plateau on top of Observation Mountain is stunning. From the viewpoint, you can see the glacier converge around Kaskawulsh Mountain and run straight below you and down the valley. The hike is long and you have to get to the end to enjoy the view, but what a view!

Pikatak Nunatak

Distance: 7 km
Elevation Gain: 140 m (459 ft)
Time: 4 hours
Difficulty: Easy

Pikatak Nunatak is a great half-day trip from a camp on the glacier near Mount Queen Mary. There is no technical climbing, but there are some crevasses near the base of the nunatak. The view of Mount Logan from the top of the nuntak is spectacular.

Sheep Creek

Distance: 15 km
Elevation Gain: 1100 m (3609 ft)
Time: 6.5 hours
Difficulty: Moderate

A great hike which offers views of the Slim's River valley, Kluane Lake, and the mountains around the area. Sheep and grizzlies can often be sighted in the area, so bring binoculars to view them from a distance. If you decide not to hike the ridge to the first summit viewpoint, then the total distance is 10 km. However, the view from the top of the ridge overlooking Kluane Lake is spectacular. See Sheep Mountain for the trail up the north ridge of the mountain.

Sheep Mountain

Distance: 10 km
Elevation Gain: 1163 m (3816 ft)
Time: 6 hours
Difficulty: Difficult

This trail is much steeper and more strenuous than the Sheep Creek trail, but you get a view overlooking Kluane Lake and the surrounding mountains the entire time. You don't get a view down the Slims River as you do on the Sheep Creek trail, but you get a better chance of seeing sheep and bears. This trail is virtually snow-free all year.

Slim's River West

Distance: 46 km
Elevation Gain: 115 m (377 ft)
Time: 16 hours
Difficulty: Moderate

This trail follows along the west side of the Slim's River and ends up at a campsite about 2 kms from the toe of the Kaskawulsh glacier. You are hiking into the heart of Kluane, so the mountains around you never cease to impress. Plan on camping at least 2 nights if you want to get a better view of the glacier. The trail along the river is long but relatively flat with a few damp sections and a couple of creek crossings. Parks Canada can close this trail at a moments notice due to grizzly bear activity, so always check with them first to see if it is open.

St. Elias Lake

Distance: 4 km
Elevation Gain: 120 m (394 ft)
Time: 1.5 hours
Difficulty: Easy

St. Elias Lake is a short hike with great rewards. There is a campground at the lake, which is nestled between tall mountains. This trail is great for beginner backcountry camping because it is a short trail to a campground with amenities. It is also great to do with kids.

Thunderegg Creek

Distance: 14 km
Elevation Gain: 215 m (705 ft)
Time: 3.5 hours
Difficulty: Easy

Thunderegg Creek is a nice, short hike in Kluane, which follows along an old exploration road with open views of the Alsek Valley and surrounding mountains. There is not much elevation gain as you hike through stunted stands of aspen and balsam poplar, ending up near the base of a large cutbank of Thunderegg Creek, which holds the famous 'thundereggs' (the sphere shaped rocks) this area is known for.