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Grizzly Lake Hike, Dempster Highway, Yukon
Grizzly Lake is the most famous hike in Tombstone Park. It is advised to do it in 2 days with an overnight camping at the lake. It is also possible to continue to walk further to other lakes and valleys; there are two other campgrounds farther, and always the possibility of backcountry camping. The park rangers announced a 6 to 10h one way with all the gear to camp.
I did not want to stay one more day in the park and I did not want to do a long hike with a heavy backpack, but I really wanted to do this hike so popular before leaving. So I decided to do the round trip in one day. I slept the previous night at the starting point of the trail, and I started walking around 9am. There is a really steep part, but as my bag was not too heavy I was not too slow. Then you walk along the ridges until reaching the Grizzly Lake Valley, and down to the lake.
Once on the ridge, the trail becomes very rocky and sometimes unstable, that’s what began to ache in the knee. Just before arriving, I met a man, not really in shape and with a fragile ankle, it took him 11h to get to the lake, with the equipment for the night.
I spent 1 or 2 hours at the lake, then I started to hike back back. Going up and then walking along the ridges was pretty easy, but the descent of the steep part was terrible for my knee. I had to slow down my own weight so much, with my sticks that I had a blister in one hand!
In the end, the return has been a bit longer than going up and I gained a good week of rest for my knee!
When you start the view is in your back, but there are a few viewpoints to stop and admire the landscape. Once past the steepest, the view is all around us. And depending on the season, there are many ground squirrels and marmots.
This is a hike not to miss in Tombstone Park, to do in 1, 2 or 3 days depending on your motivation!
- Track length: 23 km
- Duration: 9h30 Return (6 to 10h one way according to the park Rangers if you plan to camp)
- Vertical ascent: 900 m
- Departure altitude: 870 m
- Max Altitude: 1700 m
- Maximum slope: 26°
- GPS Data (GPX track log) to download: 2015-07-09_Grizzly-Lake_WayUp.gpx