Alaska’s Yukon River

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The Yukon River flows through two countries: the United States and Canada.  The state of Alaska has a long stretch of this river: over 1400 miles.  The remaining 500 miles is in Canada. The source of the river lies in British Columbia in Canada.  

When students work on our hands-on activity map of Alaska, they can see how the Yukon is north of the Denali National Park.   And the Yukon has a couple of important tributaries, one being the Porcupine River in the northeast part of the state.  The Yukon flows into the Norton Sound.

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Salmon Run in the Yukon!

The Yukon River is known to be one of the longest salmon runs on earth.  Salmon live most of their lives in the ocean then migrate over a thousand miles back to clean fresh spawning areas in the river to lay eggs.  The fish depend on unpolluted waters for their survival.

Salmon is a much desired fish since it is high in Omega oils and nutrients.  The fish, especially the Chinook salmon, have large reserves of fat to make their long trip to the spawning grounds possible. 


Gold was discovered in the Klondike area in 1896 and at that point people traveled quickly to try to take advantage of their possibilities.  Many prospectors from all areas would take trails through the mountains and then sail on the Yukon to the sites of the gold. 

Native Americans in the Yukon area

Many native American people live in the Yukon, both past and present.  Chief Isaac of Han, lived near near Dawson, around 1898.  Many native Americans in the Yukon area spoke the Athabascan Languages and still do today.

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More information!

When your school subscribes to our CartoCraze! Expanded Map Workshop , this premium membership product gives you access to more than 40 members-only workshop units.   Geared for grades 3-8, these digital workshops seamlessly integrate with our hands-on paper activity maps.  The files are conveniently organized into the following four geographic areas: mountain, deserts, islands and RIVERS!

Learn more about the YUKON and many other rivers in this special content that dovetails with our maps.  This snippet of text about the Canadian Lynx is part of the Yukon Mapping Workshop:

“Canadian Lynx are found around the Yukon River in northern Canada and Alaska.  Compared to other large carnivorous cats like lions and tigers, Canadian lynx are smaller.  These medium-sized muscular cats have a coat of thick dense fur.  This fur allows them to withstand the cold and snowy climate of their area.  Their large paws enable them to walk easily on ice and thick snow  banks. They are recognizable by their triangle shaped ears with distinctive black tufts of fur which help enhance the hearing of the animal.  Along with a keen sense of hearing, they have advanced eyesight that makes it possible for them to spot prey from afar.” 

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Use CartoCraze! premium content with any of our large activity maps, for in-depth, fun and engaging lessons your students will love.  And a  compelling writing activity related to each unit is included—sometimes calling for a descriptive essay, a poem, and even fictional stories! Writing exercises connect to engaging cultural issues, scientific matters, historical themes, and art.