Where the Wild Things Really Are: The Top Wildlife Tours

Canada's Caribou Migration: Keeping Pace with the Pack
  |  Gorp.com

When you first look at them, the caribou may appear ungainly but these nomadic animals have adapted perfectly to their Arctic habitat, and what better way to witness this than by traveling to Canada's Northern Territories and see the animals' southward migration. Every August, several Canadian-based outfitters lead multiple-day wilderness trips through the tundra to view the Barthus caribou herd.
From Yellowknife, participants are carried by bush plane to a tent base camp situated along the migration route and spend several days observing and photographing the herds at close range. You'll probably see more animals (including newborn calves) than on an Alaskan trip, as the Bathhurst herd numbers 500,000, and the migration continues throughout the month.

Ivvavik National Park, in the northwest corner of the Yukon Territory, offers another beautiful setting for two other caribou-watching adventures. A 12-day trek in August through the craggy peaks of the British Mountain, just as the autumn leaves start to change, offers the perfect vantage point to watch the moving herd.
If you prefer to view the caribou from the water, join a rafting cruise along the Firth River in July. Beginning in the high alpine meadows of the British Mountains, the trip takes you through river canyons and tundra valleys. Also expect to see Dall sheep, muskox, and moose along the river, plus beluga whales and seals on the coast.


Paul McMenamin is the author, editor, and photo director of the original Ultimate Adventure Sourcebook.

Published: 12 Dec 2000 | Last Updated: 15 Sep 2010
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication

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