fbpx Skip to content

A land of rugged mountains, pure rivers, boreal forests and arctic tundra in northern Yukon. CPAWS is working to protect one of largest unspoiled natural areas in North America. Visit our campaign website at www.protectpeel.ca

About the Peel

From its dramatic peaks and high plateaus to its sprawling river valleys and wetlands, the Peel is one of Canada’s natural wonders. The six crystal-clear rivers that flow into the Peel River – the Ogilvie, Blackstone, Hart, Wind, Bonnet Plume and Snake Rivers – are the lifeblood of this ecosystem. Four First Nations call the Peel home – the First Nation of Na-Cho Nyak Dun, Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in, Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation and Tetlit Gwich’in – and have for millennia hunted, fished and trapped in the Peel and received cultural nourishment from it.

With only limited human disturbance, the 68,000 square kilometres of vast wilderness burst with animal and plant life, from healthy populations of Canada’s iconic wildlife such as bears, wolves, lynx and caribou, to millions of boreal and migratory birds who thrive in the wetlands, to endemic plant species found nowhere else. Owing to its environmental significance, the Peel forms the northern anchor of the Yellowstone to Yukon wildlife corridor.

For years, the Peel has been coveted by industry and government for the mineral wealth that is believed to exist there – iron ore, lead-zinc, copper, nickel, and uranium – as well as coal, oil and gas. Plans to build roads, bridges and railroads into the Peel have threatened to carve up this in tact landscape. This has mobilized First Nations governments, environmental organizations, the Yukon public, hunters, tourism operators and many more groups to give the Peel the protection it deserves.

Abe Stewart, a Tetlit Gwich’in elder, dries Whitefish and Connies recently caught on the Peel River, by Peter Mather