A wide range of trips throughout Southcentral Alaska.
Fairbanks: 27°/46°/Partly sunny
© Alaska Division of Tourism
The White Pass and Yukon Route tracks hug the mountainside between Skagway, Alaska, and Bennett Lake, British Columbia.
The White Pass & Yukon Route railway offers trips into Canada along a mountainous route once taken by prospectors heading for the Klondike gold fields.
The railroad, built in 1898 and based in Skagway, offers short and daylong excursions. Many cruise ship passengers board the train at the dock.
The train's heyday was in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. For most of the 1900s, it carted freight over the Coastal Range into British Columbia. Freight service ended in 1982, and summertime passenger cars now are the company's bread and butter.
The diesel-electric locomotives are General Electric units dating back to the 1950s and ALCO units from the 1960s, the company says. The company's pride is Engine #73, a fully restored 1947 Baldwin 2-8-2 Mikado class steam locomotive.
For international crossings, proof of identity is required. Some tickets must be bought in advance, and reservations are either required or strongly suggested.
This 40-mile round trip lasts 3 to 3.5 hours and costs $89. (Kids 3-12 pay half price for all fares.) It goes to the border, at 2,865 feet the highest point along the route, and returns to Skagway.
The railroad's longest excursion runs 80 miles from Skagway to Lake Bennett, British Columbia. The 8.5-hour trip, running Friday and Saturday only, costs $135 for adults.
On Saturdays, a steam engine pulls the train. The adult price is $160.
A bus extension is available for people wanting to go on to Whitehorse from Bennett Lake. The train-bus package costs $95 each way. People making a round trip go north one day and south the next day (or later).
Hikers who have followed the arduous, 33-mile Chilkoot Trail to Bennett can take the train back to Skagway ($65) or the bus to Fraser ($35) or Whitehorse ($75). Saturday fares are slightly higher.