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Alaska Highway

3-7 Days, 1343.46 km (834.79 mi)

Travel along the historic Alaska Highway through the wilderness of BC's north.

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Part 1

Dawson Creek

Kinuseo Falls, Tumbler Ridge | Mike Seehagel

Before setting out on the journey, have a photo taken at the “Mile 0” post in Dawson Creek, then stop in to the Visitor Centre for an introduction to the Alaska Highway’s fascinating history. Tour the Northern Alberta Railway Station Museum and the local art gallery (housed in a renovated grain elevator annex).

The wetlands around Dawson Creek provide exceptional opportunities for bird watching. The waterfowl refuge at McQueen’s Slough offers a network of boardwalks enabling visitors to walk into the marsh without compromising the integrity of the natural habitat. Enjoy a meal and a craft beer at the new Post & Row Local Taphouse, or head to the Rolla Pub in nearby Pouce Coupe for a quirky blast of nostalgia and live music.

While in Pouce, don’t miss the property of local artist Gary Caldwell who recreates western scenes with salvaged mannequins. The trestle train bridge there is also a must-see.

If traveling by RV, there are many options for campgrounds in Dawson Creek, and plenty of day trip options: View the impressive collection of more than 50 chainsaw carvings in Chetwynd or head to Tumbler Ridge to visit the Dinosaur Discovery Gallery, hike the many trails of the UNESCO GeoPark, or experience the wonder of Kinuseo Falls in Monkman Provincial Park.

Part 2

Kiskatinaw Bridge and Taylor

The Kiskatinaw Bridge | Mathew Massa

From Dawson Creek, head north. At Mile 20 of the Alaska Highway is the Kiskatinaw Bridge, one of the last remnants of original construction of the highway. This timber bridge is the longest wood curved bridge in North America; cross it and enter Kiskatinaw Provincial Park where there are good camping opportunities.

Further north, at Mile 36 in Taylor, you’ll cross the mighty Peace River. In Taylor, grab a coffee from the Caffeination Station, then visit Peace Island Park, a popular family destination with campsites on the banks of the Peace River where visitors can dig for dinosaur and clam fossils. Golfers even have three golf courses to choose from in the area: Lakepoint Golf & Country ClubFort St. John Links, and Lone Wolf Golf Club.

Part 3

Fort St. John

Peace River | Andrew Strain

In Fort St. John, stop for lunch at Whole Wheat & Honey, or grab a local craft beer at at Beard’s Brewing or Mighty Peace Brewery. Be sure to check out the North Peace Cultural Centre Gallery and The Indigenous Artist Market before heading on your way.

Just past Fort St. John are Charlie Lake and Pink Mountain provincial parks. Fish for walleye and northern pike in Charlie Lake, then admire the rich pink hues of fireweed blossoms on Pink Mountain at sunrise. Continuing north, pass the Sikanni Chief Falls, located in an ecological reserve. View the 30-metre falls from a scenic vantage point or take a hike through the park.

Continue onward to Fort Nelson.

Part 4

Fort Nelson

Dune Za Keyih Provincial Park | Taylor Burk

Learn about Fort Nelson’s pioneering history at the Fort Nelson Heritage Museum. The nearby Muskwa-Kechika Management Area is known as the “Serengeti of the North” and is one of the last tracts of true wilderness south of the 60th parallel. Take a guided horseback trip with Muskwa-Kechika Adventures into the area to soak in the larger-than-life landscape.

For a more relaxing experience, fly in to Elisi Spa & Wilderness Resort and enjoy a variety of activities including fishing, hiking, horseback riding, photo safaris, wildlife viewing, and spa treatments.

Part 5

Stone Mountain Provincial Park

Stone Mountain Provincial Park | Andrew Strain

En route to Muncho Lake, stop by Stone Mountain Provincial Park. The park offers breathtaking views and remarkable wildlife viewing opportunities, as well as a wide range of recreational activities, including hiking and biking trails suitable for all levels. Hike Summit Ridge, a moderate 4.5-kilometre trail, to see a full panoramic view of the Northern Rockies.

Stone Mountain Provincial Park | Andrew Strain

Part 6

Muncho Lake Provincial Park

The Northern Rockies Lodge | Andrew Strain

Next on the journey is Muncho Lake Provincial Park, which offers great fishing, boating, and walking trails. The real star of this park is the lake itself: deep, cold, and tinted jade-green by copper oxides leeching out of the lake bedrock. Northern Rockies Lodge offers boat rentals and flight seeing tours are available.

When leaving the park, view the impressive geological formations of Folded Mountain and look for wildlife such as Stone’s sheep, moose, caribou, and mountain goats.

Part 7

Liard River Hot Springs Provincial Park & Smith River Falls

Bison along the Alaska Highway | Andrew Strain

On this last stretch of the Alaska Highway to the Yukon border, stop in at Liard Hot Springs Provincial Park. This park offers excellent campsites, and provides ample opportunity for wildlife viewing—especially moose, its year-round residents. In summer, bulls, cows, and calves can also be observed feeding in the swamps. Note, for the 2021 season: Before you go, check for any closures in place.

Approximately 25 kilometres up the highway, visit Smith River Falls, about 2.6 kilometres off the highway down a gravel road (not recommended for large RVs and trailers), which is also visible from the small parking area. You can also take a short 500-metre hike down to the base of the falls from the parking area. Be careful as the path can be quite steep in places.

Once at the bottom, you will find a beautiful view of the two-tiered waterfall. The pool at the bottom of the falls is also fantastic for Arctic Grayling fishing and fly fishing is recommended here in late summer.

Make sure to stop for a bison burger at Coal River Lodge & RV Park (the last place for supplies and gas before the Yukon), then head 10 kilometres up the highway to Whirlpool Canyon where there are unserviced, no-frills camping opportunities. In another 50 kilometres, stop at Allen’s Lookout for spectacular views of the Liard River.

Part 8

Yukon and Optional Side Trips

Traditional dip netting at the Meziadin Fish Ladder along the Stewart-Cassiar | Northern BC Tourism/Andrew Strain

Situated at Historical Mile 627 is the official BC-Yukon border. In Watson Lake, don’t miss the Sign Post Forest, a collection of more than 60,000 mileage posts indicating the direction and distance to previous visitors’ hometowns.

Optional: Historical Mile 649 is the junction to the Stewart-Cassiar Highway (Highway 37). Travel south to the Hazeltons in Northern BC. Notable stops along the way include: Tā Ch’ilā Provincial Park (Boya Lake), where the warm, jade-coloured waters are perfect for swimming and paddling; Stewart, a colourful frontier town where the ocean meets the mountains (stay at the Ripley Creek Inn and be sure to pop into the Toastworks Museum); and Meziadin Lake Provincial Park with beautiful mountain views and crystal clear waters.

Optional: Continue following the Alaska Highway into the Yukon past Watson Lake headed east. Visit Whitehorse, the thriving capital of the Yukon with artifacts from the town’s Klondike days and life-size exhibits of animals of the last ice age; head out on the hiking trails in the Kluane National Park and Reserve, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Family walking through the town of Stewart | 6ix SigmaTravelling this route this summer? Share your experiences with #exploreBC.

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