A beautiful side trip off the Alaska Highway is the 95km drive to Atlin, BC. At Jake’s Corner (km 1342) take the Tagish Road for 1.7 km before turning south on the Atlin Road, which parallels Atlin Lake for much of the journey. This is the largest natural lake in BC and it is set against a spectacular backdrop of towering mountains. The town of Atlin, like so many northern towns, was built on the back of the gold rush. In 1898, a few miners heading to the Klondike, took a detour and went in search of lesser known gold fields. Two such prospectors, Kenny MacLaren and Fritz Miller discovered gold in Pine Creek, not far from the current townsite of Atlin. The area quickly grew to over 5,000 and a town was born. To this day, there are active mining operations in the area and many historic buildings from the gold rush era are still standing. Many of the towns historic sites have been restored giving Atlin a new ‘old’ look. Now Atlin attracts visitors from around the world who want to experience its beauty and laid-back lifestyle. It has become home to many artists, musicians and photographers who are unique as the town’s setting itself. Stay for awhile and you will find a warm and welcoming northern town. And if you are lucky, you may dip below its surface to the richness below. The community of Atlin provides water and air access to Atlin Provincial Park a 900 square mile wilderness at the southern end of Atlin Lake. Because of limited access this is one of the most unspoiled areas in North America. Notify the RCMP of travel plans before entering the park.

Camping in Atlin BC

Norseman Adventures RV Park has tent and RV sites right on the shores of Atlin Lake. 30 amp, internet access, water, toilets and boat launch. 250-651-7535

Things To Do in Atlin BC

Atlin Arts & Music Festival This three day festival at the beginning of July is a family friendly event with performers, artists, exhibitions and workshops. MV Tarahne this restored ship sits on the shores of Atlin Lake. Built by the White Pass & Yukon Co. it transported goods and offered luxury cruises around the lake and to Llewellyn Glacier from 1917 to 1936.

Emergency – Police: 651-7511; Fire: 651-7666; Ambulance Emergency: 651-7700.

In 1898 prospectors Fritz Miller and Kenny McLaren struck paydirt on Spruce Creek, near Discovery, the original town-site (9.6 km/6 miles east of Atlin on Discovery Road). In the next few years, a four mile stretch of Spruce Creek yielded over $25 million in gold including “The West,” an 83+ounce nugget (“the size of half a loaf of bread”) discovered in 1899.

The creek is currently being mined so be careful not to trespass in mining areas. In 1917 the White Pass Company realized that Atlin was a unique travel destination. They promoted it’s wilderness and scenic beauty worldwide and over 400 visitors per summer were brought into Atlin. This was truly a first class service, gourmet meals, modern accommodation and interesting entertainment. This service was abandoned in the mid-30’s due to world wide economic conditions

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