Carmacks is a small village north of Whitehorse, home to the Little Salmon First Nations people. The Campbell Highway runs through Carmacks, providing a gateway to the Canol Road which has some of Yukon's most spectacular scenery.
The surrounding area is rich in mineral resources, which include coal, copper, zinc and gold, and various mining activities are still in operation.
The settlement of Carmacks takes its name from George Washington Carmack who, at the start of the 1890s, discovered coal nearby at so-called Coal Mine Hill, but this gentleman was more than a miner. He set up a trading post and developed trade with local people, before opening a coal mine on the south bank of the Yukon. Some years later his entrepreneurial focus changed when – in the company of Skookum Jim and Tagish Charlie – he discovered gold near Dawson City and started the Klondike Gold Rush. Each February, Carmacks is a checkpoint for the Yukon Quest long-distance dogsled race and the Yukon Arctic Ultra foot, ski and bike race.
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