2018 Fly-In Fall Colour Workshop Deep into Tombstone Territorial Park

Jules Renard once wrote, “On earth there is no heaven, but there are pieces of it.”

Thats exactly how I feel about Tombstone Territorial Park, Kluane National Park and many of the areas in-between that we will stop at, and photograph. The beauty that exists in some of the Yukon's back country areas are areas that I would compare to any other location on the planet for the landscape photographer of any level

Date of the Trip: August 26, 2019 to September 2, 2019

Maximum number of participants is 5

Fall colours of the tundra lies in the foreground of the Tombstone Mountains

Fall colours of the tundra lies in the foreground of the Tombstone Mountains

Details of Photography Workshop

Date of the Trip: August 26, 2019 to September 2, 2019

Maximum number of participants is 5 

Included: Private helicopter has been chartered to take us out to Tombstone Territorial Park and pick us up. Shared Accommodation at hotels, Shared tent in Tombstone. Use of tent, use of sleeping pad. Transportation via an approved Dempster highway certified vehicle. Camping fees. Park permits are secured and Photography permits will be securedMeals while camping. Satellite phone with group while camping and traveling in Tombstone Territorial park.

Not Included: Extra nights if required, sleeping bag (please bring your own), traveler insurance, meals when not camping, items of personal nature, anything not listed as included above.

Flight Information: You will be arriving into Dawson, Yukon Airport (airport code YDA), you will be departing from Whitehorse Airport, (airport code YXY)

Cost of Workshop: $5995USD

Single Supplement: $500USD (does not apply to camping as space is limited at the campsite) 

Deposit Information: $1000USD to secure your spot and balance due May 25th, 2019

Packing Information: Your personal equipment must be carefully chosen to be durable, weather resistant and insect-proof. Layered clothing for temperature control is best. Outer garments such as cotton or wool are advisable. Synthetic lining in the bag that we take to Tombstone is a good idea. Boots should be worn in and suitable for hiking off trail over sand, rocks and wet terrain. You should have waterproof rain gear that you can comfortably hike in. A daypack suitable to carry your own camera equipment and bag lunch for our hikes is great. 

Recommended Photography Equipment:

• Wide angle lens such as a14 to 24mm and an aperture of F2.8 or faster
• A medium telephoto lenses in the range of 24-105mm and a 70-200mm
• Sturdy Tripod
• Remote control for your camera for landscapes and aurora, ND and polarizers
• Two camera bodies, sufficient memory cards, chargers and batteries for each body

‘Quicklist’ of Things to Bring:

• Day pack (for camera equipment, two days clothing while camping, lunches etc.)
• Personal items such as sunglasses and sunscreen
• Warm jacket
• Insulated pants
• waterproof hiking boots
• Water bottle
• Warm clothing that you can layer, winter hat and liner gloves.
• Quality rain gear for you and for your camera
• Flashlight
• Sleeping bag

A more detailed list, and suggestions on how to travel with this gear will be supplied prior to the trip. 

Tombstone Mountain

Tombstone Mountain

In camera motion blur as fall descends on the Yukon forests

In camera motion blur as fall descends on the Yukon forests

Itinerary of Photo Workshop

Day One – August 26, 2019 – You arrive in Dawson City on Air North flight 4N307 in the morning. I will pick you up at the airport and take you to our hotel in Dawson where we can drop our luggage and we will spend the balance of the day exploring the history of Dawson City before dinner.

After a group dinner we will head down the Dempster Highway and stop at different locations to photograph the area from different locations in order to give you a glimpse into the landscapes that we will be flying behind in the coming days.

Physically, Tombstone is just north of Dawson City, easily accessed by the Dempster Highway… as we will see today. But tomorrow we will enter the “Patagonia of the North” and return to the time when the only people here were the First Nations: the Tr’ondek Hwech’in, Na Cho Nyak Dun, Gwich’in First Nations, and the Inuvialuit people. Everything else was wildlife: Caribou. Moose. Dall sheep. Bears. Wolves. And the beautiful gyrfalcon and Ptarmagen.

This is the land where craggy, black granite pinnacles point to the sun. Where hidden valleys are settings for crystalline lakes. Where every summer the tundra explodes in a crazy carpet of colours that delight the eye and confound the camera. And where the only forces that have truly touched the landscape are wind, water, and glaciers—except in the northern Beringia areas where the glaciers did not form, and where mammoths, steppe bison, scimitar cats and other giants of the ice age roamed.

The unique landforms, life, and heritage found in this 2,100 km2 are now protected for all time.

Stay at Aurora Inn in Dawson City.

Day Two – August 27 - Today we must have a mandatory meeting with Yukon Parks staff to discuss camping in the back country.

But we will also visit the abandoned Bear Creek gold mining site today. This town, once pinnacle to the local gold mining was left abandoned. The buildings and machinery left and has been over taken by nature over the last half century.

We will then head back to Tombstone Territorial Park to walk some hiking trails to give you some further views of the Tombstone Mountains surrounded by the fall colour ground cover.

Stay at Aurora Inn in Dawson City

Day Three and day four – August 28 and August 29 - After breakfast on day three we will head to the airport to meet with our private helicopter charter that will take us deep into the Tombstone Mountain range. Our destination is the Talus lake and the Grizzly Lake area of Tombstone Territorial Park.

This pristine area is in the center of Canada’s version of Patagonia. The landscapes are otherworldly and the silence is deafening.

Because we are sleeping under the stars tonight we can keep our eye out on the skies for our very short window for northern lights. Sunset is at 11pm and it will not be dark until after midnight… Sunrise will not be until 5:45pm, which means twilight will be an hour before that. This gives us 3 ½ to 4 hours of dark enough skies to watch for northern lights while in one of the most remote areas of Canada, just a few degrees from the arctic circle.

Aurora in the Yukon

Aurora in the Yukon

Northern lights in the Yukon

Northern lights in the Yukon

For the next two days will hike to different vantage points through numerous side trips we can do from the lake, including Grizzly Pass and Mount Monolith / Twin Lakes viewpoint.

Our hiking trails will take us into different valleys to photograph some of the iconic mountain ranges that are part of Indian folklore before humans were keeping records.

Because we are sleeping under the stars during these nights we can keep our eye out on the skies for our very short window for northern lights. Sunset is at 11pm and it will not be dark until after midnight… Sunrise will not be until 5:45pm, which means twilight will be an hour before that. This gives us 3 ½ to 4 hours of dark enough skies to watch for northern lights while in one of the most remote areas of Canada, just a few degrees from the arctic circle.

Remote camping in tent.

Day Five – August 30 - After one last sunrise photo shoot we will get picked up by our private helicopter charter and taken back to Dawson City over the mountain ranges of Tombstone Territorial park.

We will return to Dawson City and check back into the Aurora Inn where you can clean up, grab a shower and we can grab some lunch.

This will give us time to go through your images and I can help you with composition and editing.

After dinner you will have one final photo shoot as the sun descends over the meadows of the Tombstone area at one other location I know along the Dempster Highway.

There is still more area to explore in the Tombstone Territorial Park. After a hearty meal we will head back to the Dempster Highway and head farther into the Park.

Long into the night we will stay in the area to photograph into the Golden hour.

As we depart back to Dawson, keep your eyes on the skies. We will arrive back in Dawson after dark and there is always a chance that the aurora will be dancing over head.

Stay at Aurora Inn in Dawson City.

Elk wandering through meadow

Elk wandering through meadow

Tombstone Territorial Park

Tombstone Territorial Park

Day Six – August 31 – We rise very early and head south. Today its time to switch gear and grab our luggage and head south towards Whitehorse.

This will be a lengthy drive with frequent stops that will take us most of the day. Our destination lodge is 45 minutes north of Whitehorse.

Later today and into the night we will focus on one of my favorite areas, the Fox Lake area. Here, you will be focused on photographing the mountain reflections and the fall colours. After we check into our accommodation mid afternoon, expect to be out taking images. Hopefully staying out for the northern lights over one of the area lakes.

Stay at Lodge outside of Whitehorse

Day Seven – September 1 – Kluane – Today we head west for Kluane National Par. If you’ve ever imagined standing amidst a sweeping landscape of mountain valleys carved by glaciers and sprinkled with vibrant fall colours, you will get to live your dream in Kluane National Park and Reserve of Canada. An icon of North America and the center piece of the Kluane region in Yukon, Kluane National Park and Reserve is one of our natural treasures and was declared a World Heritage Site in 1979.

We will visit four or five different vantage points in the Haines and Kluane area, ending our day back in Whitehorse.

But, as we always do on my Yukon trips, we pay attention to the sky. If the northern lights are out, and the cloud forecast is accommodating, we will have the option to be out one last night hunting down the northern lights.

Stay at WestMark Inn in Whitehorse

Day Eight – September 2 – You depart for home as your schedule dictates from Whitehorse

Are you ready to experience one of the most unique experiences in your life? Click on the Contact Me button and I can answer your questions.