Active Transportation

Cycle

Multi-use paths, including the Robert Campbell Bridge, are designed to be shared respectfully by pedestrians and cyclists. Cyclists ride responsibly, advise pedestrians that they are passing (using a bell or calling out “passing on your left/right”) and yield to pedestrians; pedestrians control their dogs and are aware of, and make room for cyclists.

Cyclists are treated the same as vehicles under the Yukon Motor Vehicles Act. This means that when riding on Yukon roadways, cyclists have the same rights, duties, and obligations as motorists. The City of Whitehorse also has a Bicycle Bylaw. Cyclists committing an infraction can be charged, fined, and have their bicycle seized.

Bike lanes are a portion of the road reserved for one-way travel by bicycle. Vehicles are not permitted to drive, park or block the lane, including at intersections.  Whitehorse is in the process of re-signing 4th Avenue to improve the visibility of bike lanes, especially in the spring when the lines are worn off the road way. Bike lanes will be repainted with a bicycle and a diamond – the diamond is the symbol accepted in Canada to signify that only the modes of transport listed are allowed to travel in the lane.

The City welcomes and encourages use of its cycling routes and trails. Here are a few reminders for safe cycling:

  • Ensure your bike is in good working order and fits correctly.
  • Ensure your brakes work well and maintain them regularly. You should be able to fully engage the brakes without the levers touching the handlebars.
  • Shoulder check regularly, and use a mirror to monitor traffic.
  • Watch for doors opening on parked cars, pedestrians darting into your path, or other dangerous situations.
  • Use a white cycling light or headlamp in the front and a red rear light. Wear bright reflective clothing.
  • Carry tools and a cell phone.
  • Lock your bike when unattended.
  • Wear a helmet. Bicycle helmets are required under the Bicycle Bylaw.
  • Obey all traffic devices and signs.
  • Use proper hand signals.
  • Ride single file when riding with other cyclists.
  • When using multi-use trails, keep right. Before passing, ring your bell and say “passing on your left.”
  • Do not use the roadway on Two Mile Hill. Please use the multi-use trails on either side.
  • Except where bicycles are designed for more than one rider, it is illegal to carry more than one person on a bicycle.
  • Tell someone of your route and time of return, especially when using wilderness trails. Be bear aware.
  • Check out this website for more information.

Routes and Maps

Whitehorse has an extensive wilderness trail network –  the 2008 Guide to the Popular Trails of Whitehorse provides a good overview of the trails by neighbourhood/area. Key features of the trail system:

  • 150 km of trails with city-wide significance
  • 700 km of local and neighbourhood trails
  • Trails provide  access to the surrounding hinterland and facilitate public movement about the community
  • Trail system provides a range of recreation and transportation benefits

Popular Trails

The Millennium Trail (pictured above) is a 5 km non-motorized multi-use paved trail that is ideal for all ages and abilities. The Millennium Trail connects with the Yukon River Loop Trail to Miles Canyon.

Council Approved Trail Networks

The City has an approved motorized multi-use trail network – ATV operators must stay on motorized multi-use trails at all times. Latest 2014 ATV approved trail map available here.

Whitehorse has dedicated bike lanes, roads with wide shoulders and multi-use trails along the Yukon River, Two Mile Hill, and Hamilton Boulevard that form the main cycling routes.

The commuter cycling map highlights the routes in Whitehorse that are within approximately 7 km of downtown, and can be used to plan the best routes.  The recommended on-street routes have either wide shoulders or bike-lanes – cyclists should be aware that traffic speeds on the Alaska Highway can be 90 km/hr.  There are several off-street routes that are multi-use; always stay on the right of the path and pass other users with caution and respect.