Kusawa Territorial Park

Getting there

Accessible from Kusawa Lake Road off the Alaska Highway.

Download a 1:100,000 scale map of the park.

Facilities

The Takhini River and Kusawa Lake campgrounds are located within the park at kilometres 15 and 23 from the Alaska Highway along the Kusawa Lake Road.

About

Kusawa Territorial Park has a distinct cultural and natural history. We can trace ancient travel routes and traditional use of the area , which continues today, back thousands of years. Family ties and cultural stories are inherent in the land. This, along with its varied landforms, water features and distinct wildlife populations is anchored by Nekhᶙ Män, “rafting across lake” in Southern Tutchone or Kùsawu.â, “narrow lake” in Tlingit. The park is within the Traditional Territories of the Carcross/Tagish, Champagne and Aishihik, and Kwänlin Dün First Nations.

There is a weather station at Kusawa Slide. See weather station data.

Park objectives

  • To protect for all time a natural area of territorial significance and of important cultural significance to the Carcross/Tagish, Champagne and Aishihik, and Kwanlin Dün First Nations. This area includes portions of the Yukon-Stikine Highlands, Ruby Ranges and Yukon Southern Lakes eco-regions that contain important physical and biological features, as well as archeological, historical and cultural sites.
  • To recognize and protect the traditional use and sharing of the area by Carcross/Tagish, Kwanlin Dün, and Champagne and Aishihik people.
  • To recognize the current use of the area by Carcross/Tagish, Kwanlin Dün and Champagne and Aishihik people and other Yukon residents.
  • To recognize and honour the history, heritage and culture of the 3 First Nations in the area through the establishment and operation of the park.
  • To encourage public awareness, use, appreciation and enjoyment of the natural, historical and cultural resources of the park in a manner that will ensure it is protected for the benefit of future generations.
  • To recognize the current recreational uses of the area as well as its potential for other uses, including ecotourism and First Nation cultural tourism.
  • To provide economic opportunities to Carcross/Tagish, Kwanlin Dün, and Champagne and Aishihik people to participate in the development, operation and management of the park.

Management plan

Lands claim agreements identified the 3,081 km2 park in Southwest Yukon. It is still in the process of becoming an operating park. It is withdrawn from mineral and oil and gas exploration and became legally protected under the Parks and Land Certainty Act in 2016.

A Steering Committee recommended a park management plan to respective governments in January 2016. This plan was jointly reviewed by the Government of Yukon and the Carcross/Tagish, Champagne and Aishihik, and Kwanlin Dün First Nations and is in final stages of approval. Visit the Kusawa Park Steering Committee website for more information about the park management planning process.