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Facts on the Yukon

More than 80 percent of Yukon is still wild, with majestic mountains, glaciers, rivers and exciting wildlife, including caribou, mountain sheep, grizzly bears and birds.
In the Athapaskan language, the word "Yukon" means "the great river" or "big river." The famous Yukon River is the fourth longest river in North America. It is approximately 2,200 miles (3,520 km) long and you can canoe 2,050 miles from Whitehorse to the Bering Strait.

Date the Yukon Entered Confederation

June 13, 1898

Area of the Yukon Territory

482,443 sq. km (186,272 sq. miles) (Natural Resources Canada, 2001)


The Yukon can be divided into two broad geographical regions: taiga and tundra. Taiga is the boreal forest belt (typified by stands of pine, aspen, poplar, and birch trees) that circles the world in the subarctic zone, including most of the Yukon. Tundra is the vast, rocky plain in the arctic regions, where the extreme climate has stunted vegetation.

Capital City of Yukon

Whitehorse, Yukon

Population of the Yukon

33,897 (Statistics Canada, 2011 Census)

Residents are known as


Aboriginal Peoples in the Yukon

About a fifth of Yukoners are of aboriginal descent and belong to one of 14 Yukon First Nations, speaking eight (8) different languages. Yukon First Nations' rich culture and history in Yukon dates back as far as the last Ice Age (approx. 50,000 years). The cultural and linguistic traditions of the Athapaskans go back more than 1,000 years. The distinct groups of Athapaskan Indians are Gwitch'in, Han, Tutchone, Upper Tanana, Kaska, Tlingit and Tagish.

Main Yukon Industries

Mining and tourism

Time Zone

Pacific Standard Time (PST)


The Yukon has a subarctic climate. The high altitude of much of the territory and the semiarid climate provide relatively warm summers with temperatures frequently reaching 77F (25C) or more during the long summer days. In winter the temperature ranges between 39F and -58F (4C and -50C) in the south and slightly colder farther north. The warmest recorded temperature in the Yukon was 97F (36.1C) on 14 June 1969 at Mayo; the coldest was -81F (-63C) on 3 February 1947 at Snag. Above the Arctic Circle (latitude 66 north), the Yukon is known as "the land of the midnight sun" because for three months in summer, sunlight is almost continuous. In winter, however, darkness sets in, and the light of day is not seen for a quarter of the year.

Yukon Statutory Holidays (in addition to National Holidays)

Discovery Day - third Monday of August
Heritage Day - the third Friday in February


The ExploreNorth Blog

Just some facts- FYI (for your information)

  • Whitehorse is the third largest city in Canada by area
  • The Carcross Desert is the world's smallest at 642 acres (260 hectares).
  • Whitehorse has the world's most northern botanical show gardens
  • The Dempster is the only public highway in North America to cross the Arctic Circle
  • 1896: Skookum Jim, George Carmack and Dawson Charlie strike gold on Bonanza Creek in the Klondike River drainage. Word spreads and creates the world-famous 1898 Klondike Gold Rush.


Canada Cool

Government of Yukon-History

Council of Yukon First Nations-History

Get in the Yukon Know

map of Yukon

credit: The Atlas of Canada (Natural Resources Canada)




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Terms and Conditions. This page published: Monday, November 16, 2020 at 05:51 PM MDT