Gateway to the Southern Lakes
Teslin is a popular destination for self-guided canoeing and wildlife viewing. Sport fishing on the large lakes in the region is popular with an abundance of Lake Trout and Northern Pike.
Teslin is a small village located in the Yukon Territory at Mile 804 (Km. 1244) on the Alaska Highway. It is bordered by the waters of Nisutlin Bay and Teslin Lake. Until the turn of the century this was the summer camp or meeting place of the Tlingit tribe from southern Alaska.
During the Gold Rush of 1898 the Teslin campsite boomed briefly as a stopover on the Canadian route to the Klondike. For the first time Teslin had permanent residents. The Hudson Bay Co. established a trading post for the villagers and those traveling the Klondike trail.
By 1903 the Hudson Bay Co. post closed and Nisutlin Trading post was opened by Tom Smith and George Geddes. Teslin continued to grow with the arrival of the Northwest Mounted Police.
In 1906 the Anglican Church opened a mission to serve the community. That early Log building is still in use as a parish hall. In 1938 the Roman Catholic Mission was opened with a resident priest.
Today, in 2015, Teslin is home to approximately 450 people which includes Teslin Tlingit people who have shared ancestry with the coastal Tlingit people of Southeast Alaska and the Inland Tlingit people of Taku River First Nation and Carcross-Tagish First Nation. These inhabitants enjoy a prosperous community with such facilities as an airport, museums, R.C.M Police Detachment, school, community centre, health unit, post office, motels, restaurants, and a general store.
Teslin Lake is 78 miles (125 Km.) long, 2 miles (3+ Km.) wide and reaches a maximum depth of 700 feet (213 m.). It is home to II species of fish with Lake Trout being the favourite catch of the sports fisherman. In the late summer Chinook and Chum salmon travel up the Yukon and then the Teslin Rivers to spawn. Autumn brings many hunters to this area for ducks, geese and moose. A public boat ramp and launch are situated on the North side of Nisutlin Bridge. This bridge is the longest span on the entire Alaska Highway.
Teslin Tlingit Heritage Centre
The Teslin Tlingit Heritage Centre welcomes visitors to participate in the day-to-day life of the Tlingit people whose traditions are reflected in every aspect of the facility. This striking building on the shores of Teslin Lake houses the Great Hall, home of the Clan Governance for the Teslin Tlingit people. Interpretive displays feature masks and artifacts that explain two centuries of Tlingit history and the culture of the Inland Tlingit people. Visit the gift shop/gallery for authentic Tlingit art.
George Johnston Museum
George Johnston Museum and Heritage Park is a must-see Teslin attraction named after the venerated Tlingit elder, trapper, fur trader, entrepreneur and photographer. George Johnston’s photographs, his restored 1928 Chevy hunting car and colourful exhibits of Tlingit ceremonial regalia and traditional artifacts tell the story of the Inland Tlingit as they met the rapid changes of the first half of the 20th century.
The museum gift shop replicating Johnston’s 1950 general store stocks Tlingit arts and crafts, and small Yukon gifts. A small theatre shows films including the NFB’s: “Picturing a People” by Tlingit Director Carol Geddes. Visitors can view an original 1940s Air Radio building and exhibit, stroll prepared trails or picnic in the interpretive rest areas.
The Yukon Motel is located on the shore of the Beautiful Nisutlin Bay at Km 1244/Mile 804 on the Alaska Highway in Teslin, Yukon Territory Canada.
The Motel offers a variety of room types. All feature Satellite TV and full bathrooms. Single or double bed options are available, as well as single and double bed rooms. Prices vary depending upon room.
The RV Park is located on the shore of the Nisutlin Bay in a mosquito-controlled area, just a stone’s throw away from the restaurant, souvenir shop and Wildlife Museum.
Take a seat in their restaurant and enjoy a hearty, delicious meal with a cold Yukon beer, or treat yourself to one of their tasty baked goods and fresh coffee if you’re in a hurry. Their homemade burgers, nourishing soups, and strawberry rhubarb pies will fuel your Yukon adventures and have you coming back for more!
Be sure to check out the Souvenire Shop & Wildlife Gallery!