Get ready for the trip of a lifetime by taking on what is arguably the best combination of challenge and adventure that we offer. This Adventure Cycling classic, first run in the 1980s, has been newly researched and completely updated.
Beginning in Adventure Cycling’s hometown of Missoula, Montana, we’ll strike northward through a continuum of spectacular country, including some of the wildest areas remaining in North America, as we traverse the remote roads of northern British Columbia and the Yukon Territory. Come share this amazing experience with a group of fellow adventurers and explore the farthest reaches of the North American continent. We guarantee you won’t find anything like it anywhere else!
|Start Date:||Jun 13, 2015||End Date:||Aug 12, 2015|
|Start Location:||Missoula, MT||End Location:||Anchorage, AK|
|Total Days:||61||Riding Days:||49|
|Average Daily Mileage:||55.6||Surface:||Paved/Dirt|
|Riders:||14||Elevation Alert:||High Point: 6,500'|
|Airport:||Missoula International, Ted Stevens Anchorage||Tour Leader:||Glen Graham|
|Type:||Self Contained||Technical Difficulty:||Moderate|
|Physical Difficulty:||Advanced+||Level of Support:||Self Contained|
Due to the remoteness and lack of services on the North Star, not all dietary preferences can be supported. This tour is not recommended for participants that require Gluten Free or Vegan diets.
We’ll meet in Adventure Cycling’s hometown, the beautiful and vibrant college community of Missoula, Montana. Beginning our journey north, we’ll ride between mountains and lakes through the picturesque Seeley-Swan and Flathead valleys to the ski and summer recreation area of Whitefish. From there, we’ll continue north, passing through northwest Montana’s Tobacco Valley before crossing the Canadian border at Port of Roosville to begin our trip through southern British Columbia.
This week provides some of the premier scenic highlights of the entire tour. We'll ride north along the headwaters of the Columbia River to the resort town of Radium Hot Springs, make the long climb through Canada’s Kootenay National Park to Vermillion Pass, and cross into Alberta and Banff National Park. Following a layover day at scenic Lake Louise, we’ll make our way toward Jasper National Park with three unforgettable days of riding along the world-famous Icefields Parkway, which should be on the top-10 bucket list of every cycletourist.
After a revitalizing layover day in the town of Jasper, we’ll launch a 10-day, 550-mile journey westward on the Yellowhead Highway, quickly reentering British Columbia. The Yellowhead, which follows several major river systems, will provide us with unforgettable overnight stops in some of B.C.’s most popular provincial parks, lakeside resorts, and summer vacation towns.
This week we’ll turn north to tackle the Cassiar Highway, a backcountry byway short on services but long on amazing scenery. We’ll visit a string of provincial parks and small villages, including the First Nations village of Iskut, before reaching the Yukon Territory and the town of Watson Lake on the Alaska Highway.
The meaning of the word “remote” becomes clearer than ever as we depart Watson Lake for a week of pedaling on the unpaved Campbell Highway, which arcs north and west into the vast emptiness of Canada’s Yukon Territory. Overnights at a series of lakeside campgrounds will be interspersed with visits to two small villages before we join the paved Klondike Highway and head directly north again.
Five days of riding on the Klondike Highway brings us to a well-earned layover in historic Dawson City, which played a major outfitting role during the Yukon Gold Rush of the late 1890s. After that, we’ll head into the isolated country traversed by the unpaved Top-of-the-World Highway and toward the Canada-Alaska border; eventually, we’ll merge onto the Taylor Highway, which takes us to the Richardson Highway and the town of Tok. The Taylor Highway leg includes an overnight stay in the improbably named village of Chicken, Alaska, which will seem to us as much like the edge of the earth as Top-of-the-World did. Story goes: the town was originally to be called “Ptarmigan,” but townspeople couldn’t agree on the spelling, so Chicken was the name chosen.
From Tok, three more days of northward riding will take us to the storied outpost of Fairbanks, the high point of our tour, in terms of latitude (from Fairbanks, it’s only 198 road miles to the Arctic Circle via the Dalton Highway). After a layover day to enjoy Fairbanks, we’ll ride for two days to Denali National Park and Preserve, where we will spend two more days exploring the park’s scenic wonders by both tour bus and bicycle. Our North Star adventure formally ends upon our departure from Denali, but Adventure Cycling has arranged for that departure to be as special as the rest of the trip: You and your bike will board the Alaska Railway’s Denali Star and make tracks to downtown Anchorage, from which point you will head for home — changed forever, no doubt, by the remarkable journey you have just completed.
This is a new tour, or one we have not offered in awhile. Sign up and be one of the first cyclists to contribute to this testimonials page! For now read what past tour participants have said about some of our other trips.
"I loved the scenery and meeting other riders. I always learn something new riding with other people- I love all the new friends I made!"
2012 Tour Participant
"I was so amazed at the age of the participants in our group. Meeting the unique and amazing people on these tours is one of our favorite things about them. The people inspire us to keep touring."
2009 Tour Participant
"Getting to know a new group of people is always a highlight. As the trip begins the biggest thing we have in common is our bikes and our interest in touring ... by the end of the trip we discover other interests and even differences that make for a fun and interesting dynamic."
2012 TOUR PARTICIPANT
"There are so many aspects of an Adventure Cycling tour that are a pleasure in different ways that it's hard to pick just one. Achieving a physical challenge, a journey through beautiful landscapes, sharing it with great people, the complete escape from my usual way of life are all part of the package ... I guess it's a dose of full, sensory living."
2012 Tour Participant