The highlight of my trip to Yukon (in a trip filled with many spectacular experiences) was a bikepacking trip on the Cottonwood Trail in Kluane National Park. The trail itself is 83 km long and all but approximately 7 km of it (from km 74 to 81) is rideable. The unrideable part is one heck of a hike-a-bike; not impossible, but hard.
We rode the trail clockwise, beginning on Mush Lake Road.
Another view of the route.
This is the elevation profile of the route. We liked doing the route clockwise because we gained elevation early in the trip (and quickly!) but then gradually worked our way down, mostly on singletrack.
We brought topo maps but found ourselves referring to the “Detailed Description” from the Park site most frequently. If this is your first time on the trail I recommend it strongly that you print off a copy of this and use it to aid in navigation.
Mush Lake Road was a mostly pleasant and fun 16 km ride.
Crossing a channel of Alder Creek.
Overall the route is well marked – look for these posts (some have toppled over) and/or moose racks to guide you.
Charles enjoying the alpine singletrack.
This route just kept on giving.
We did this route in 2 days, one night, making camp at km 46.6, shown here. We travelled for 7.5 hours on day one and 10 hours on day two.
Charles relaxing at camp.
Day 2 started with a brief water crossing…
…and then became endless alpine meadow singletrack.
Where Victoria Creek enters into Louise Lake. We worried about this crossing as it has the potential to be impassable. We found it challenging and were very cautious, only brining one bike across at a time with the person NOT carrying the bike bracing the person who was.
The hike-a-bike up from Kathleen Lake is hard…
…but the view is outstanding. Note Victoria Lake waaaay in the distance.