The Chilkoot Trail is a 33-mile path that begins at tidewater in Dyea, Alaska, runs over the coastal mountains and ends at Bennett Lake in northern British Columbia, the headwaters of the Yukon River. The trail was used for hundreds of years by native peoples and served as an important trade route from the coast into the interior. In the late nineteenth century it became famous as one of the most popular ways of getting to the Klondike gold fields in Dawson City, Yukon Territory. It is in this more recent history that the image of the trail is often represented in popular culture with a wild sense of individuality, romanticism and myth.
Chilkoot Legends is a project that took place for two weeks in July 2014 as part of a residency sponsored by the National Parks Service, Parks Canada, the Yukon Arts Centre, Alaska Geographic, and the Skagway Arts Council. Signs were posted and stories were collected from hikers all along the trail. A video was then created based on those contemporary stories and Chilkoot experiences.
The first part of adventure-art is all about creating an exciting and unusual life experience. The second part of adventure-art is the image of that experience. People that decide to hike the Chilkoot Trail have already put themselves in a situation of adventure. Chilkoot Legends serves to provide them with an image of their adventure.