White Pass Summit Rail & Yukon Suspension Bridge: Skagway’s most scenic experience!

By Mindy Fontan

A must do when stopping at the port of Skagway on an Alaskan Cruise is taking a journey by train over the famous White Pass Summit. Round trip options are available, but we opted to do a one-way ride along with the Yukon Suspension Bridge. It worked out perfectly. Keep in mind a round trip train ride is about 3 hours long and a one-way ride is an hour and a half long.

Our tour guide picked us up right at the port and I also did not book this excursion through the cruise. We started off with a beautiful scenic drive up to the Yukon Suspension Bridge. You do need your passports as you cross over to Canada, which was fun to add to our stamped collection. Our tour guide was very informative and stopped along the way to allow us to capture some beautiful pictures of glaciers, snowcapped mountains, and beautiful waterfalls. We even got a family shot in front of the ever so famous Alaska sign!

Once you arrive at the Yukon Suspension Bridge you will be amazed at the gorgeous 360-degree views of the beautiful Canadian outdoors. You will experience walking over this swaying bridge that spans 65 ft above white-water rapids!  In addition, you will be entertained by interpretive displays of the outdoor museum along the way. After, you can step into a cafe for a quick snack and peruse the gift shop for a selection of unique memorabilia before you leave.

Next, our tour guide dropped us off at the White Pass Train Station where we ended our tour by boarding the famous White Pass Railway. This Railroad was built in 1898 during the Klondike Gold Rush.  It was designated as an International Historic Civil Engineering Landmark (along with the Eiffel Tower and Statue of Liberty)!!! It’s definitely unique and authentic. Be prepared, the railroad is 3-foot wide, has a narrow gauge, and climbs almost 3,000 feet!!  It also passes through 2 tunnels and travels over sky high trestles and bridges!! Have your cameras ready!!!

During the ride, you can relax and enjoy a narrated commentary provided on board the train. You actually sit in comfortable restored replica passenger coaches which are heated, have large viewing windows, and a restroom.  It was very enjoyable and not something you see and do every day.

My family and I had so much fun by pairing the Yukon with the White Pass! You really can’t go wrong with this excursion. It was two spectacular tours rolled into one!!

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