Travel The Historic Alaska Highway To Explore Dawson Creek, Fort Nelson, Watson Lake, Muncho Lake Provincial Park, And Other Alaskan Sites
Stretching from Dawson Creek, British Columbia, to Delta Junction, Alaska, the historic Alaska Highway started out as a gravel road where gas stations and hotels were few. Today, this modern highway offers scenic views, and is steeped in World War II history with exciting attractions to explore from start to finish.
The historic Alaska Highway broke ground in the Canadian wilderness in 1942 and eventually connected the Lower 48 states of the United States to Alaska. The construction of the roadway was consider by the U.S. Bureau of Public Roads in the 1920s and 1930s. It was later when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor in 1941 that the need for greater military presence in the Pacific prompted the United States and Canada to begin construction. Soon, military bases were establish throughout coastal Alaska and the Aleutian Islands.
For those seeking to experience this great highway start in Dawson Creek, British Columbia at Mile Marker 0, where you'll find the Alaska Highway House. Here, you'll find general visitors information and historic tales from actual construction workers on the road. Spend some time at Mile Zero Rotary Park exploring the Walter Wright Pioneer Village, which depicts the building of the highway and the 1940's era.
The next stop on your trip can be Fort Nelson, British Columbia, which was originally a fur trading post. Fort Nelson prospered with the construction of the Alaska Highway and is now a bustling community of around 4,500 people. Visit the Fort Nelson Heritage Museum for a look at antique car and truck collections, historic buildings and artifacts. Note that this is the last full-service community before reaching Whitehorse, Yukon.
As you travel onward along the historic Alaska Highway you'll find Watson Lake, Yukon. This is an area to explore and experience some of Canada's most scenic watersheds on the way to the community of Watson Lake. Summit Lake at historic milepost 392 is the highest summit along the Alaska Highway at 4,250 feet. Muncho Lake was originally a refueling stop at historical milepost 456 during the construction of the Alaska Highway. Today Muncho Lake Provincial Park and its picturesque surroundings is a favorite destination for Alaska-bound travelers. Upon arrival to the town of Watson Lake, Yukon, head to the Signpost Forest to add your city's sign or license plate to the collection.
These are just a few suggestions of places to explore along the historic Alaska Highway. Just let your imagination guide you, and you'll discover many exciting sites!
By Nick Worley
For a complete listing of special events, getaway options, and attractions visit the Official State of Alaska Travel Planner online at www.travelalaska.com.