In the footsteps of the prospectors – The Chilkoot Trail Hike

Overview:

The Chilkoot Trail is a 53km long hiking trail that runs from Skagway, Alaska to Bennett Lake, British Columbia, crossing the Canadian/American border at the peak of the Chilkoot Pass. In general, the trail is not overly difficult for an experienced hiker. I would go so far as to say that the first two days and last two days are easy to moderate hiking.  Day 3, however, is challenging due to the large elevation gain, the climb up the boulders, the subsequent descent, and the length of the track that day.  That said, when my friend and I did the trail, there was a diverse group of hikers hiking with us. Among them was a 75-year- old man (who had done the trail 6 times previously), and a family with 5 and 8-year-old girls (that had their gear and pack system down pat).  The hike is very doable if you are well prepared.

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A trip to Salt Spring Island

Although a visit to Salt Spring Island is not a back country trip, it certainly can be a camping trip with outdoor activities (including hiking, kayaking, paddle boarding).  It is one of the many islands in the vicinity of Vancouver Island, BC that is worth a visit – with its own character and charm.

 

 

 

 

Where to stay:

There are several resorts, bed and breakfasts and cottages on Salt Spring Island, however, many of these can be somewhat pricey. The other option is camping, which if you’re on a budget, might be the best choice.

We stayed at Mowhinna Creek campground, which was one of the nicest and neatest campgrounds I have ever stayed at. I would absolutely recommend this place! The kind lady at reception was incredibly welcoming and we were greeted by our first names when we arrived. The sites are all spaced far apart with lots of trees and mini wooden fences separating them so you have your own little area and don’t feel like you’re surrounded by people. There is a lot of space to set up a tent (and when you book they ask how big your tent is or if you have a trailer, etc). The sites have water, power, and even a garbage can, as well pre-positioned hooks in the trees for ease of tarp hanging. The outhouses are super cool – from the outside it looks like a typical outhouse – but then you walk in to find there is electricity (so you get light) and a nice clean real flush toilet. It is a relatively small campground so not too many crowds or loud people. The staff take diligent care making sure it stays clean. There are coin operated showers too – 1$ for 3 minutes – but super clean and well maintained and have warm water. The campground is centrally located about a 1.5 km from the town of Ganges (and totally walk-able). There is also a playground located centrally near the check in building. I recommend this as a place to stay and would stay here again!

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