Make isolation an adventure with our ASIP program.
Dreaming of a Yukon wilderness adventure this summer? It’s possible thanks to the Alternative Self-Isolation Plan (ASIP) program. Our local experts can help you access our world-class backcountry by organizing trips that will keep both you and our communities safe.
For those who prefer to hike vast mountain ranges, paddle down remote wilderness rivers, or simply connect to nature, there’s a wilder way to isolate. Our members can help plan your trip of a lifetime with tours specially designed and approved to make your Yukon dreams a reality. Today.
Your questions answered
What is the ASIP program?
The ASIP (Alternative Self-Isolation Plan) program is a framework for Yukon’s wilderness tourism companies to safely conduct business during COVID-19. The program has been approved by Yukon’s Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH), and was developed by experts in the wilderness tourism sector from across Yukon and Canada, as well as an Occupational Medicine Consultant.
How does the ASIP program impact my travel plans?
Canadian residents can enter Yukon if they have been fully vaccinated with Government of Canada-accepted vaccines at least 14 days prior to arrival. Those who are not fully vaccinated will be required to self-isolate for 14 days. However, if you book an ASIP tour through an approved operator, you can complete your 14-day self-isolation while on your tour in the backcountry, instead of completing it in Whitehorse prior to departing on your tour.
Can American or international guests visit the Yukon?
On August 9 2021, fully vaccinated US residents can enter the Yukon if they have received the full series of a vaccine - or combination of vaccines - accepted by the Government of Canada at least 14 days prior to entering Canada.
On September 7 2021, international guests can enter the Yukon if they have been fully vaccinated with Government of Canada-accepted vaccines at least 14 days prior to entering Canada and meet specific entry requirements. For travel updates and details for US and International guests, visit: https://bit.ly/2TspJHh.
How does a wilderness tourism operator become ASIP-approved?
ASIP-approved operators must first develop detailed Operational Plans. They must then submit their plans to Yukon’s COVID Response Unit for review and approval by the CMOH prior to hosting guests.
How do I know that the ASIP program is safe?
All wilderness operators approved through the ASIP program design their tours specifically to avoid interaction with individuals or communities outside of your tour group for the duration of your visit. Additionally:
- Most operators do not have a ‘storefront’, i.e. there is no general public access to the facilities and all guests are pre-booked.
- Interaction with the public (airport pick-ups, etc.) is limited and controlled.
- Many of our operators function in small groups exclusively outdoors.
What is included in the operators’ alternative self-isolation program and Operational Plans?
- COVID-19 Workplace Risk Assessment
- Outline of COVID-19 policies
- Communication and training plans
- Tools/plans for ongoing monitoring and assessment of risks and guest experience
- Outdoor Participants Medical Management Plan for guests with more complex needs that is co-created with the guest, and if needed a medical professional (i.e. for guests with compromised auto-immunity, epilepsy, diabetes).
- Outdoor Medical Management Plan for Containment and Evacuation
Each Operational Plan is specific to the operator and their tours.
How will operators keep individuals/communities in the Yukon safe?
- Out of territory guests and Yukoners will not be grouped together on tours.
- Some operators will only accept guests that have been vaccinated and/or have a negative COVID test prior to travel.
- Travel groups will follow a designated travel corridor while in the Yukon, which minimizes exposure to Yukon residents and communities. This corridor shall be outlined prior to the trip, and include non-contact strategies for rest stops and refuelling.
- Operators will pre-screen all guests which includes an online questionnaire and pre-arrival check to ensure guests have no symptoms, have a negative test result and are aware of territorial COVID-19 guidelines.
- All operators will follow a trip plan outlining where the group/client is visiting, when and with whom. Operators are required to provide the territorial health authority with a copy of the tour manifest prior to departure to support contact tracing efforts.
- If a client and/or group has a suspected outbreak and/or been exposed to COVID-19, operators will notify health authorities as soon as possible for directives.
- Should guests or staff display COVID-19 symptoms prior to the trip, they will be asked to stay home.
- Wilderness tourism activities are conducted outside and travel is through isolated and wilderness areas. These areas have ample access to open space and ventilation.
- All briefings, meals and learning-led activities will be conducted outside. If physical distancing cannot be maintained, non-medical masks will be worn.
- Hand hygiene practices before, during and after outdoor activities will be facilitated by providing access to hand sanitizer and/or handwashing stations with soap and water.
How do I know if an operator is ASIP-approved?
All ASIP-approved companies on the Yukon Wild website will have a special ASIP stamp that indicates they are permitted to operate. You can also contact the tour operator directly for more information.
Who is eligible to book with an ASIP-approved operator?
Currently, all Canadian residents can book a trip through an ASIP-approved operator.
How do the operators sanitize/disinfect their equipment?
- High contact areas will be disinfected frequently or after each use. Vehicles and aircraft will be disinfected after each use.
- Guests and guides will follow a designated protocol which sanitizes, disinfects and stores kitchen and eating equipment safely.
- Common equipment and surfaces will be sanitized at the end of each day. Examples include washrooms (including outhouses), watercraft equipment, cooking equipment, tarps and all group expedition equipment. Textiles, neoprene, and other products requiring specialized detergents and sanitation will be cleaned after each use according to manufacturers’ direction and dried in open air and sunshine.
- All operators use disinfectants that meet Health Canada’s requirements for COVID-19.
- Guests will be issued their own personal equipment, such as backpacks, helmets, paddles or personal flotation devices, for their exclusive use for the duration of the expedition. Each item will be clearly labelled or easily identified to ensure it is handled by only the guest to whom it is issued.
- At the end of an expedition all personal gear will be properly washed, sanitized and allowed to dry in direct sunlight.
What pre-trip measures are in place?
Before your trip, you will receive:
- A pre-screening questionnaire to ensure you are healthy before travelling and eligible to participate.
- A waiver and informed consent that must be signed as part of the liability insurance.
- An orientation message at the first point of contact reconfirming your health and negative test results.
- An orientation of safety measures and procedures, physical distancing, proper hygiene practices, and monitoring and reporting illness.
- You will also receive an on-site orientation upon arrival.
What happens if my trip is shorter than the 14-day self-isolation period?
If your trip is shorter than 14-days, you must leave the Yukon under the same precautions exercised upon your arrival. More details will be provided by the operator you have booked with.
How will accommodation work for guests and guides?
On most trips, guests will stay in individual tents or cabin rooms. Families, couples or people in a “bubble” may share tents or cabins, however all solo guests will have their own tent or room.
If shared accommodations are required for those who are not “bubbled” together, beds/sleeping bags will be arranged so that they are at least 2 metres (6 feet) apart and head-to-toe where possible.
What happens if a guide or guest develops COVID-19 symptoms while in the backcountry?
- The symptomatic person will be immediately separated from others in the group.
- The spaces and items used by the symptomatic person will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.
- Guides will contact their operator, who will then contact Yukon Communicable Disease Control and follow their instructions.
- If the symptomatic person is in a camp that does not have a reliable way to verbally communicate with a health care professional, and/or does not have reasonable access to reliable transportation (i.e. a road), they will be moved to a location that does.
- Those who were in close contact with the symptomatic person will be advised to self-isolate after the trip. If required, the entire group will follow self-isolating protocols until a diagnosis is confirmed.
Will I have to wear a mask throughout the trip?
You must follow all current public health guidelines during your trip. This includes wearing a mask in all public indoor settings, or outside when physical distancing cannot be maintained.
Do the same booking/ cancellation policies apply for an ASIP tour in comparison to a regular tour?
Please contact the operator you wish to book with directly for information on their refund/cancellation policy.
Read about current COVID-19 restrictions in the Yukon.
For additional details about a specific tour, please contact the operator you have or are looking to book with.
For general information, please contact the Wilderness Tourism Association of Yukon.