Tucked away above the well-travelled beauty of British Columbia, Canada's Yukon territory is a lesser-explored but infinitely rewarding corner of the country.
With wildlife and wilderness abound, the Yukon gives visitors a chance to escape off the beaten track. Being a lesser talked about area of Canada, here are seven things you might not already know about the Yukon...
1. The Yukon territory takes up a total of 483,450 km² - roughly the size of Spain. With a population of 40,000, it’s the least populated area of Canada, and still roughly the same as it was in 1900. Around 25,000 of Yukon-dwellers live in the city of Whitehorse, the Yukon’s capital, with the rest spread across the territory in smaller towns, villages and houses dotted across the wilderness.
2. Its name comes from the Gwich'in native word ‘Yuk-un-ah’, which means ‘Great River’. The Yukon River is 3,187 km long, starting in British Columbia, flowing through the Yukon territory and emptying into the Bering Sea at the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.
3. At 19,551ft tall, Mount Logan in Kluane National Park and Reserve is the highest mountain in Canada and the second highest on the North American continent, after Alaska’s Mount Denali.
4. Yukon’s Carcross Desert is the smallest desert in the world, at just one square mile. When the snow melts in the summer, the desert is revealed – the sand is blown in from a nearby lake, and held in place by the surrounding mountains.
5. English is the main language in Yukon, however some aboriginal languages including Tlingit and Tahltan are still recognised by the Yukon government.
6. In extreme cold weather, the temperature in Yukon can drop as low as −34°C, with the lowest ever temperature of −63.0°C recorded in the town of Snag.
7. In the late 1800s, Dawson City experienced a major gold rush, and with this came an influx of industry. Almost overnight, the population grew from 200 to around 40,000. When the gold dried up around the beginning of the 1900s, those people began to leave, and now Dawson is home to around 4,000 people.