On August 16, 1896, prospectors discovered gold on the banks of Bonanza Creek, in the Klondike region of what is now Yukon Territory, Canada. In just six months, more than 100,000 hopeful Canadians and immigrants tried to reach these lucrative gold fields in what became known as the Klondike Gold Rush.The Klondike was an incredibly difficult area to reach and even more difficult to mine. The region could only be accessed by icy passes through rugged mountains, and the rapids of the Yukon River. The trek to the gold fields was so treacherous that the government of Canada forced all prospective miners to have at least a year’s worth of food and other supplies before entering the region. (These supplies could weigh as much as a ton, forcing prospectors to make many trips to the gold fields and back.) Once in the Klondike, prospectors had to contend with frozen streams and permafrost—making mining nearly impossible.
Term Part of Speech Definition Encyclopedic Entry abundant Adjective
in large amounts.
ability to use.
a slope of land adjoining a body of water, or a large elevated area of the sea floor.
to sincerely assert.
to learn or understand something for the first time.
valuable chemical element with the symbol Au.
gold field Noun
geographic area where gold is mined.
system or order of a nation, state, or other political unit.
person who moves to a new country or region.
profitable or money-making.
to extract minerals from the Earth.
landmass that forms as tectonic plates interact with each other.
gap or break in rugged terrain, such as a mountain ridge.
Encyclopedic Entry: pass permafrost Noun
permanently frozen layer of the Earth's surface.
Encyclopedic Entry: permafrost prospector Noun
person who searches or mines land for precious metals.
areas of fast-flowing water in a river or stream that is making a slight descent.
Encyclopedic Entry: rapids region Noun
any area on Earth with one or more common characteristics. Regions are the basic units of geography.
Encyclopedic Entry: region rugged Adjective
having an irregular or jagged surface.
body of flowing water.
Encyclopedic Entry: stream ton Noun
unit of weight that equals 2,000 pounds.
journey, especially across difficult terrain.
Yukon River Noun
(3,187 kilometers/1,980 miles) river in western Canada and the U.S. state of Alaska, draining into the Bering Sea.