A scenic journey through Tombstone Territorial Park, Yukon

Tombstone Territorial ParkIn Canada’s far, far north, there’s a special place where soaring peaks shelter caribou, wolves and grizzly bears, the water is so blue it rivals the best of the Caribbean, and those who make the gruelling trek over rough, multi-coloured terrain are rewarded with spectacular lookout points all to themselves.

This place is Tombstone Territorial Park, an over 2,000 square kilometre area about an hour and a half north of tiny Dawson City, and one of the most scenic spots in the entire Yukon.
Tombstone Territorial ParkNamed after formations in the surrounding Ogilvie mountain range which are shaped like grave markings, the park is a popular area for exploring all year round. Winter excursions include snowmobiling, dog sledding and snowshoeing, with barely a soul in sight. In summer, hikers can enjoy day hikes through the park including Grizzly Ridge, a five kilometre route that includes a view of Mount Monolith at the end of the so-called Grizzly Valley.

Those looking for more of an adventure can tackle the jaunt up to Grizzly Lake, where the trail passes through pristine meadows and over rocky slopes. If time allows, many continue to Divide Lake or head over to spectacular Talus Lake. Some trails require a gruelling hike due to rough terrain and drastic weather changes, meaning most outdoor enthusiasts tackle them as a part of a five or six day excursion into the wilderness.
Tombstone Territorial ParkTombstone Territorial ParkFortunately there’s another way to enjoy the scenery without all the hard work: by taking a helicopter! Trans North Helicopters is one of the area operators that charters visitors into the park, and the experience is worthy of any bucket list.
Tombstone Territorial Park helicopterTombstone Territorial ParkA helicopter ride means an eagle-eye view of Tombstone Territorial Park, which includes getting up close and personal with the jagged cliffsides, soaring over the desolate tundra and keeping an eye out for wildlife such as caribou or those aforementioned bears.
Tombstone Territorial ParkTombstone Territorial ParkThose lucky enough to land beside Talus Lake will be in for a surprise as soon as they step out of the chopper: it turns out the lichen-covered ground is like something you’d imagine in outer space. The marsh-like turf crunches under your feet, yet springs back up like a sponge.
Tombstone Territorial ParkTombstone Territorial Park

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Tombstone Territorial Park

The view of Talus Lake

Suffice it to say that being one of only a few souls standing quietly in the middle of the vast, spectacular valley surrounded by nothing but a large sky and the looming mountain peaks is an experience one doesn’t soon forget.
Tombstone Territorial ParkTombstone Territorial ParkOn the way back, there’s a final sight in Tombstone Territorial Park that’s not to be missed: the dazzling and aptly-named Azure Lake.


Tombstone Territorial Park

Azure Lake


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Globe Guide explored Tombstone Territorial Park as a guest of Travel Yukon. As always, hosts have no editorial influence over articles.

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23 Responses

  1. Amelie says:

    Whoa, this is nuts! Sometimes I wonder why I didn’t spend more time exploring my own country before moving abroad. Definitely an incentive to come back home!

  2. christine says:

    Woah!!! Absolutely stunning! New place added to my list!!

  3. anna says:

    Wow! Can’t get over how blue and bright that lake is. How incredible! It does look like a scene from outer space.

  4. Wow, this place doesn’t even look real! Your photos are stunning, thanks for sharing.

    Happy travels 🙂

  5. Meg+Jerrard says:

    Holy wow – STUNNING!! I’ve always wanted to visit the Yukon during winter because I hear there are opportunities to see Polar bears, but you’ve just convinced me I need to plan a summer trip too!!

  6. Nisha says:

    How beautiful! Never been to Canada and this one sure makes it to my list of to-dos.
    The lake is so blue and the earth so colorful. 🙂
    Reminds me of Mauritius.

  7. Katie says:

    Wow so beautiful! I took my first helicopter flight recently and loved it. I can see why you’d need one here.

  8. Arzo Travels says:

    This looks like a great place, some pictures even look unreal <3 De. a dream to do a heli ride there 🙂

  9. Mags says:

    Wow! That landscape is unreal! I don’t think I’ve ever seen water that blue. I had no idea a place like that existed.

  10. Bernard Tan says:

    OMG! this is such a beautiful place, the water in the lake is so blue. The tranquillity is awesome! such a nice place for an extended getaway.

  11. Kristina says:

    These are such spectacular photos. I can’t even imagine how breathtaking they must have been in person. I would love to add this to my list.

  12. Connie says:

    Was there in 2015. Will be going back. It was awe-inspiring.
    All of the Yukon is stunning, smell the air. It’s a feast for your eyes
    Love it, Tombstone is such a magnificent place. Listen to the sounds of silence.
    Make sure to engage all your senses. It’s in my heart now

  13. Christian says:

    Great article and photos Tamara. We have been there in 2017 and 2019, there is no place like Tombstone, the beauty, the isolation and the vastness. If you are going to Dawson City Tombstone is a must see.

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