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First Trip to YK

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Pittsburgh, PA
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First Trip to YK

Hi, everyone! I am planning a trip to the Northwest Territories (Yellowknife specifically) and I need some help! Any information that you can provide would be appreciated!

We want to see the aurora borealis and watch the wildlife. What are the best months to do this?

Is it possible to ride over an ice road? If so, what is the best month for this?

What other activities do you recommend? We’re interested in nature and the outdoors.

If we stay in Yellowknife, should we rent a car?

Should we spend the entire trip (up to seven days) in Yellowknife or is there another spot you would recommend visiting?

Are there tour companies that can arrange for excursions? Do hotels provide this service?

Thanks again for your input!

Ottawa, Canada
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1. Re: First Trip to YK

Hi Writer416,

Here is the listing for the Official Website for the Northwest Territories Tourism = www.spectacularnwt.com

A good place to start your research.

There are several companies that specialize in Northern Lights Tourism... you'll find a lot of info if you just GOOGLE - aurora borealis yellowknife.

Also, you might want to SEARCH thru past TA YELLOWKNIFE TRAVEL FORUM Aurora Borealis topics (and or those in the NWT TRAVEL FORUM)... just type your keyword(s) into the SEARCH Box at the top of any FORUM Page.



PS... BTW, the abbreviation YK is very confusing in this situation because it is the official one for YUKON which is another Canadian Northern Territory... so don't be surprised if you also get info on the YUKON or WHITEHORSE by mistake... which is equally another popular spot for Aurora Borealis sightings.

Edited: 21 December 2009, 19:01
Pittsburgh, PA
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2. Re: First Trip to YK

Thanks for the quick reply!

Who knows... maybe we'll end up going to the Yukon sometime as well!

Edmonton, Canada
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for Edmonton, Yellowknife
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3. Re: First Trip to YK


You can see the northern lights pretty much any clear night in the winter. As for the ice roads, your best bet is the Dettah ice road which is right outside Yellowknife. The others are usually a bit more isolated.

The best months would be late December to beginning of February, March.

There are quite a few things that you can do in winter, skidooing, dog sledding, snowshoeing, tobagganing.

I would recommend renting a car. As for visiting other places, there are not too many places. There are a few native communities within 2 hours drive, but other than that, Yellowknife is pretty isolated.

As for tour companies, it has been a long time since I have been up there, and the companies were just starting to operate up there, but this is the only one that I could find: northernfrontier.com/01_TravelDirectory/…

I do remember that tourists were provided with winter clothes, so this is someting that you might want to check with them about. As for the hotels, that is something that you might want to check with them about as well. When I was living up there, the hotels did not provide any type of tour companies or excursions.

Hope this helps,


Pittsburgh, PA
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4. Re: First Trip to YK

Thanks for the information!

5. Re: First Trip to YK

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