A Postcard-Perfect Day Boating on Lake Bennett

We’ve been having a very cool, wet Spring and Summer so far, but Saturday was so incredible it almost made up for all the bad days.

Our group took 3 vehicles to Carcross for a day of boating, suntanning, fishing and picnicing. I was first with the pickup, as I had some more artifact hauling to do. I parked it at the cabin and walked to the boat launch to meet my niece who trailered her little boat. This was the view of the Nares River from the footbridge at noon – the muddy water to the left is the outflow from the Watson River, with the water of Lake Bennett still clear.

Nares River - Carcross, Yukon

At the boat launch, we waited for this very cool craft to be brough ashore. The owner has spent 3 years building it and plans to use it to run tours of the Carcross area.

Custom tour boat at Carcross, Yukon

Bobbie and I were on our way just before 12:30 – passing under the railway bridge in this shot.

Railway bridge at Carcross, Yukon

Aaaah – the beauty of Lake Bennett!

Boating on Lake Bennett, Yukon

Bobbie loves being on the water! Our cabin can be seen at the extreme right of the photo.

Boating on Lake Bennett, Yukon

Approaching the West Arm of Lake Bennett, with its many glaciers. Bobbie was so moved by the place she was almost in tears at this point – I really like travelling with people like her and Cathy who get it!

West Arm of Lake Bennett, Yukon

We made a landing just before 1:00pm to have a look at the MacDonald Creek power plant, which supplied electricity to the silver mines on Montana Mountain 100 years ago.

Old silver mine power plant at MacDonald Creek - Lake Bennett, Yukon

MacDonald Creek. On the far side of the lake in this area there are some beautiful beaches – even better than the ones on this side.

MacDonald Creek - Lake Bennett, Yukon

Looking north from Mile 62.9 on the White Pass & Yukon Route railway (the cabin is at Mile 67.1).

Mile 63 of the WP&YR

This is where we beached to explore the MacDonald Creek area – on the delta of the creek.

MacDonald Creek - Lake Bennett, Yukon

This is a very dynamic landscape – there are many huge rock slides and slumps, some that leave me wondering about the cause.

Rock slides along Lake Bennett, Yukon

Rock slides along Lake Bennett, Yukon

This large lava plug is known as Dundalk Knob.

Dundalk Knob - Lake Bennett, Yukon

Two thumbs up, Mother Nature – nice work!!

Boating on Lake Bennett, Yukon

Some of the mining roads on Montana Mountain can be seen through one gap in the mountains.

Boating on Lake Bennett, Yukon

A video look at the trip as we approached Boundary Island.

A couple of the small islets at the Yukon – British Columbia border. This was shot at 2:50pm.

Boating on Lake Bennett, Yukon

Some of the gulls on the islets at the border.

Boating on Lake Bennett, Yukon

I could easily have spent a while (a whole day?) on these rocks. Scenically and spiritually a very special place. I’ve spent a fair bit of time here in the canoe – while tougher to get here, the silence of the canoe is better to explore places like this.

Boating on Lake Bennett, BC

We had a look at the Pennington section house from the boat, then went back a few hundred yards to a better spot to beach the boat for a closer look.

Pennington section house - Lake Bennett, BC

The quiet little bay we beached at was thick with pollen, and the movements of the water made some interesting patterns.

Pollen on Lake Bennett, BC

Near the section house is an even older log cabin – this is the back of that structure. Straight ahead is a root cellar, to the right is a workshop.

Boating on Lake Bennett, BC

Pennington, Mile 51.6.

Pennington, Mile 51.6 of the WP&YR.

The upper storey of the section house is all bedrooms. I used to dream about turning this place into a B&B – if I was 30 years younger I might do it.

Pennington section house - Lake Bennett, BC

Yeah, I could live at Pennington!

Pennington section house - Lake Bennett, BC

Across from Pennington and about a half-mile further south is this large waterfall. Bobbie wanted to climb up to see the plunge pool (which has the potential to be amazing!) but the avalanche willow was too thick and we didn’t have any time left.

Large waterfall along Lake Bennett, BC

This is the Pennington section house as seen from the creek that flows from the waterfall above.

Pennington - Lake Bennett, BC

This 36-second video was shot at the creek seen above. Having no engine noise gives a better idea of what the place is like.

The waterfall was the furthest south we went – at 4:00pm we reluctantly began the trip back to Carcross. This gull didn’t seem to be the least bit concerned with us going by quite close!

Gull on Lake Bennett, BC

The is the “Welcome to Yukon” sign at the border, facing the railway. This sign was installed about a dozen years ago and could use some TLC. The original sign can be seen in a corner of the Bennett Eating House.

'Welcome to Yukon' sign - Lake Bennett, Yukon

One more landing, on Boundary Island to visit the graves of Luc Richard and Thomas A. Barnes, who died when they fell through the ice in May 1898 while hauling freight.

Graves of Luc Richard and Thomas A. Barnes on Lake Bennett, Yukon

Bobbie started to get worried about our fuel situation, but I looked up and told her that we had no problems because the Husky God was watching over us 🙂 Thanks for helping keep us safe, Kodi.

Husky cloud over Lake Bennett, Yukon

Having Lake Bennett calm all day is quite unusual – I’ve had to walk home from too many outings that began by canoe! This reflection was so perfect that I posted the photo upside-down 🙂

Reflection on Lake Bennett, Yukon

We got back to the cabin hours later than I’d planned on, but nobody, least of all Cathy, was surprised. By 7:00pm we were well into our picnic – and since the arrival of Cathy’s parents last week, the fur-kids have learned where the best odds of success are. Not that Charlie ever feeds them!

Huskies begging at a picnic at Carcross, Yukon

What an amazing day. I shot over 300 photos, and my niece has an even better understanding of what the Yukon can offer people like us. We had planned to do some fishing on this outing but it turned out that the one thing that Bobbie likes better than fishing is Exploring! 🙂


A Postcard-Perfect Day Boating on Lake Bennett — 11 Comments

  1. Wonderful , Amazing !!! I am so sad that I cannot be there this year. Thank you for your Blog and Photos.

  2. Murray : Great pics as usual. Couple of questions.By boat how long would it take from Carcross to Bennett City? What is with the spelling of Skagway on Pennington station sign?

  3. Ah! What a beautiful looking pics collection! Just bookmarked this page for sharing with my friends 🙂

  4. Thank you Murray. I really enjoyed that and will read it again. When we were in Carcross a couple years ago we pulled into the parking area located here (http://goo.gl/maps/rgdj) and tried to figure out where your cabin was. I would really like to go back some day. We drove all the way to Emerald Lake (think that was the name) and stopped at the desert along the way. Emerald Lake was really beautiful. The drive from Skaway to Carcross is an absolutely gorgeous drive…one that I will never forget and one that I will do again if I ever get the chance.