Guide Profile: Natalie Sands

I grew up in the north, born and raised in Atlin, BC – a small, rural community a couple hours south of Whitehorse, Yukon. Rivers have guided my life in a way I wouldn’t have imagined. I learned how to white water kayak and raft guide on the Tatshenshini River, here in the Yukon. I guided my first trip on the Tatshenshini-Alsek when I was 19 years old, and have, since then, developed a lifelong, special connection to that river corridor. I’ve made it my mission to continue visiting and exploring the Alsek River through work and play. In addition to guiding on the Alsek, my personal exploration includes a self-supported kayak trip in which I paddled part of Turnback Canyon and hiked for nine hours on Tweedsmuir Glacier to navigate the rest, as well as a solo packraft trip on the Upper Alsek in which I hiked up and over Goatherd mountain through the most heinous bushwhack of my life.

Raft guiding has taken me to rivers in India, New Zealand, BC, Utah and Idaho, but I most enjoy coming home to share these rivers with others. I have most recently returned home to Whitehorse, Yukon and am completing my BEd after a decade of working raft guiding, instructing and working with young people. I am passionate about northern rivers and am excited to continue exploring this land.

Natalie Sands