Kluane National Park and Reserve of Canada

St. Elias Lake Trail

Trail head:
60 km south of Haines Junction on the Haines Highway
3.8 km one way
2 - 4 hrs return trip
Elevation Gain:
120 M (400')
Maximum Elevation:
885 M (2900')
1 : 50 000 Topographic Map:
Mush Lake 115 A/6


This trail provides for a short day hike on easy terrain through a variety of habitats. It is enjoyable for the whole family and is a popular overnight trip.


The St. Elias Lake Trail follows an old recreation road from the Haines Highway to a sub-alpine lake that lies between 1370 M mountains.

The first part of the trail is hilly, and winds through mixed stands of spruce and aspen. The trail continues through a coniferous forest for 2.4 km, and descends into a sub-alpine valley populated with dwarf birch and willow. During spring and early summer, the wild flowers are abundant in this location. Signs of wildlife may be numerous. Watch for bear, moose, beaver, spruce grouse, loons, ducks, and mountain goats on the high mountain slopes. Also watch for the only Jack Pine tree in the park, it’s found on the last stretch of this hike.

There is a primitive campsite at the East end of the lake consisting of 4 tent pads, a fire pit, pole type food cache and an outhouse. A canoe is located here and may be rented by contacting Kluane Adventures at the Dalton Trail Lodge. It is also possible to fish in St. Elias Lake. A National Park fishing license is required.

Note: For overnight trips to St Elias Lake a wilderness permit is mandatory. Contact Parks Canada at the Haines Junction Visitor Centre for more information.

Bear sightings are common in this area. Review recommendations for travel within the You Are In Bear Country brochure. All bear sightings should be reported to the staff at one of the Visitor Centres.

Trails and Routes