On one of our snowmobile tours, Canada’s history and landscape are all yours, breathtaking in their raw, remote beauty.
Our long track snowmobiles are designed to take you extended distances, over routes it would take days or even weeks to cover in summer. Take advantage of the snow and frozen water to let the machine make short work of crossing lakes and ‘portages’ – areas of land where in summer all gear, including canoes, must be carried between areas of open water.
We have a range of guided tours, from an easy two hour ride, to a full day that covers almost 100km. Get a sense of the life lived by the North’s Dene (aboriginal inhabitants) pioneering trappers and miners. See the power and beauty of Nature on the icy expanse of Great Slave Lake, a body of water almost the size of Switzerland. Visit waterfalls that still flow, even when the air temperature is -40°C. Learn how the Dene have caught fish for millennia, beneath ice more than a meter thick.
You will be fitted with a helmet and warm clothing, and depending on your wishes and experience, the size of the party and distance to be travelled, you will be a driver or passenger on one of our 4-stroke Scandia 600 long track machines.
This is a list of exciting guided experiences that we may offer by snowmobile. Pending on site at Blachford weather, ice and overflow conditions and other conditions beyond our control we may, or may not be able to, or decide to offer these experiences. Safety and comfort of our guests is all important.
Guided snowmobile tours from the lodge
We offer tours from basic instruction, to multi day adventures from the lodge. While you don’t have to pre-book these snowmobile tours, we ask that you kindly inform us if you’re interested!
|Guided Snowmobile Tours|
|1) Taste of Touring (5 km)||$140|
|2) Whiteman Loop (10 km)||$200|
|3) Whiteman Trail and Tea & Cookies Tour (20 km)||$275|
|4) Traditional Dene Net Fishing||$275|
|5) Ice Pressure Ridges on Great Slave Lake (32 km)||$290|
|6) Watta Lake – Grace Lake Tent Frames (37 km)||$400|
|7) Ice and Exploration – The Ultimate Great Slave Circular Day Tour (Day Tour)||$500|
|8) Overnight Snowmobile Tour (per day)||$750|
|Prices listed are for self-driving tours. Passengers (non drivers) are 50% off of the listed prices.|
Include: guide, helmet with visor or goggles, gas and oil, operating instructions.
Taste of Touring – 5 km ride $140
Hop on your snowmobile and learn the basics as we glide over Blachford Lake Lodge and you learn how to operate a snowmobile for the first time!
Whiteman Loop – 10 km ride $200
This easy route follows a series of three small lakes and bush trails joining Blachford and Long Lakes, and back to the lodge. Included in this trip is experiencing the site of the Cadieux family’s old cabin on the Francois river system.
Whiteman Trail and Tea & Cookies Tour – 20 km ride $275
Travel to a different lake, with new wildlife tracks, an old tent frame and beautiful views. Here, you’ll be served a hot lunch on the land as you enjoy the lockout from this tent frame on the Francois river system.
Traditional Dene Net Fishing – $275
Travel out to a remote arm of Blachford Lake to meet with our Dene guide to check his traditional fish nets, stretched under the meter-thick ice. Learn how the nets are set, using time-honoured methods. Watch and your guide lands the latest catch of whitefish, trout or northern pike. Listen to stories about fishing and learning from their fathers and grandfathers in a community where this catch, along with caribou hunted out on the land, was their main source of food and survival. Anticipate how good that beautiful fresh fish will taste after the chef prepares it back at the lodge. You’ll have a whole new respect for the traditional Dene way of life after this eye opening experience.
Ice Pressure Ridges on Great Slave Lake – 32 km $290
A pleasant winding trail heads from the lodge at Blachford to Thor Lake, a rare mineral exploration camp. From there you head south on bush trails and join an old mine access road to overlook the East Arm of mighty Great Slave Lake and Blanchet Island, 10 miles to the south. Then wind down a trail to the lake itself, to see close-up how the constant pressure of wind, currents and moon can create cracks on the surface and throw up blocks and ridges of ice. Explore the cliffs rising from the lake shores.
Watta Lake – Grace Lake Tent Frames – 37 km $400
Travel the lakes around Blachford, including Whiteman, Long, Watta and Hearne Lakes, and as you drive the portages between them, imagine carrying all your gear if you were doing the trip in summer by canoe! Visit the site of the 1950s homestead of Henry and Mary Cadieux and their family at Francois River. The Cadieux based their traplines from this location, and Old Trapper’s cabin at Blachford was one of their ‘out cabins’. At Francois River, they kept chickens, goats, and pigs and you can still see their chicken-shed, tipi and warehouse. See open water rapids on Francois River before crossing beaver ponds and travelling across more lakes and portages to visit a waterfall on the Beaulieu River (weather conditions allowing): this is open year round – even at 40°C below! Over lunch around a warming camp fire, wonder what it was like to live out here more than half a century ago, before heading back to the comfort of the hot tub at Blachford Lake Lodge.
Ice and Exploration – The Ultimate Great Slave Circular Tour – Full Day Tour $500
Covering almost 100km, this is the ultimate snowmobile tour to view the majesty of North America’s deepest lake, and follow in the footsteps of those who explored this rarely visited region. Follow a series of winding trails and beaver ponds to an old geologist’s cabin and the remains of the ‘Rex Cafe’, a mining camp dating back to the 1930s. Then it’s down onto the lake’s East Arm to see the incredible ice pressure ridges (described above, trip #3). Head over to Blanchet Island: its towering cliffs also drop 600 feet below the water’s surface. Search the shorelines for prehistoric rocks then head back to the mainland and snuggle into the ‘Hole in the Wall’. This inlet is a haven for boaters in summer and snowmobilers in winter, providing shelter from the frequent high winds of the East Arm. Warm by a roaring campfire with a hot lunch before making your way back to the lodge, along the north shore of the Great Slave Lake, passing the abandoned Destafanny Gold Mine and a mineral exploration camp.
Overnight Snowmobile Tour (per day) – $750
Stay at a traditional tent frame on the land! This tour can be catered to your preferences and where you’d like to go. If you’d like, you can combine one of our snowmobile routes above with this tour. Please discuss with your on site guide the logistics of this tour. You must be an experienced rider to take this tour.
Please note, all snowmobile tours are condition/weather dependent. We reserve the right to change the routing at any time. Rides over 3 hours are for experienced riders only. Costs listed are for DRIVERS only. RIDERS can enjoy a 50% discount on the listed rates.
Snowmobiling to Blachford
Are you a local Yellowknife resident, and wish to travel to Blachford on your own or rental snowmachine? Please contact our office for availability and current rates.