The Alaska Highway

Alaska Highway Route
  1. The Alaska Highway is also known as the ALCAN  highway.
  2. The highway is 1,387 miles or 2,232 kilometers long.
  3. The road was constructed during WW11.
  4. It opened to the public in 1948.
  5. The highway passes near Kluane National park, home of Canada’s tallest mountain. (Mount Logan)
  6. The route runs from Dawson Creek B.C. to Delta Junction Alaska.
  7. Fairbanks, Alaska is the unofficial end of the highway.
  8. The highway was built with lots of twists and turns to protect military convoys from air attacks.
  9. Early plans to build the ALCAN started in the 1920s, but the Canadian government wasn’t interested in a road link to the Yukon.
  10. Construction started March 8, 1942.
  11. Construction was spurred on by the Japanese attacks on the Aleutian Islands.
  12. The majority of the road was built by the American army.
  13. Most of the road was gravel but now the entire surface is paved.
  14. Hundreds of pieces of road building equipment were shipped on Northern Alberta Railways priority trains to Dawson Creek.
  15. The road was completed October 28, 1942.

Documentary on Construction of the Alaska Highway

  1.  The completion was celebrated with a ceremony at Soldier’s Summit.
  2. The ceremony was broadcast by radio.
  3. Much of the road has been straightened over the years.
  4. The highway has shifted slightly due to post-war rebuilding.
  5. A homesick G.I. put a signpost up in Watson Lake pointing to his home town. Today there are more than 10,000 signs in the Sign Post Forest.
  6. On April 01, 1946 the U.S. government officially turned the Canadian portion of the highway over to the Canadian Government.
  7. The Milepost is the definitive guide to travel on the Alaska Highway.
  8. The Milepost has been published every Year since 1949.
  9. The Americans paid for the construction.
  10.  The Canadians supplied timber and gravel.
  11. The highway runs past Liard Hot springs in northern B.C. It is Canada’s second largest hot spring.
  12. The highway passes through Yukon’s capital city Whitehorse.
  13. Thousands of RVs travel the Alaska Highway every summer.
  14. The Alaska Highway connects to the Campbell Highway in the Yukon. (to Ross River)
  15. The Alaska Highway connects to the Klondike Highway. (south to Skagway Alaska; north to Dawson City, Yukon)

The Alaska Highway is a Modern Day Engineering Marvel

Alaska Highway Construction
  1. The Alaska Highway connects to the Atlin Road. (to Atlin, B.C.)
  2. The Alaska Highway connects to the Richardson Highway. (to Fairbanks, Alaska)
  3. The Alaska Highway connects to the Haines Highway. (to Haines, Alaska)
  4. The Alaska Highway connects to the Taylor Highway. (to Eagle, Alaska)
  5. Building the Alaska Highway is described as the biggest and hardest job since the construction of the Panama Canal.
  6. Four 1300-member Army Engineer regiments were deployed to build a rough trail.
  7. Civilian firms were contracted to make the trail road worthy.
  8. The operation was overseen by Colonel William M. Hoge.
  9. Hoge was from Missouri and educated at West Point.
  10. Total construction time was eight months and 12 days.
  11. The record low temperature during construction was -79 F.
  12. Many people working on building the highway were Black from the southern U.
  13. They worked 20 hours a day.
  14. Because of their efforts the U.S. military integrated all units during the Korean War.
  15. You can view moose, elk, bison, bear, and lynx from the highway.

Driving the Alaska Highway is Still an Adventure

Alaska Highway
  1. You can view dahl sheep at Sheep Mountain, north of Haines Junction.
  2. There is 20 miles between Canada customs in Beaver Creek and U.S. customs in Alaska.
  3. The highway travels through traditional First Nations territories in BC, Yukon and Alaska.
  4. For a time the highway was proposed to be numbered as part of the U.S. Route 97. That’s because the BC’s Route 97 connects to the lower 48.
  5.  The Alaska Highway is the only land route to Alaska.