Finding the Real Alaska Highway

Up to this point, the trip has been very interesting, but the road hasn’t changed much from North Dakota to Fort Nelson. Mostly wide open plains, some farmland, the occasional mountain in the distance.

Today, for the first time, I really felt like I was in the wilderness, traveling a remote road to a never-before-seen destination. The road shifted from a true asphalt road to a kind of a “chip-sealed” gravel type road. It’s rougher and there are often patches where the seal has gone and potholes and loose gravel are a real danger. Luckily, the road folks here are pretty good about warning signs before you reach the nastier spots so you can slow down and drive around big potholes.

Also, the terrain has changed. Yesterday, I spoke of the deep, dense, primal forest lining the roads. They now extend, seemingly, forever. Across mountains and valleys and around lakes and rivers. The Rocky Mountains end here in British Columbia, the final point in a mountain chain that reaches through the middle of the U.S. to New Mexico.

Stopping points are few and far between and they are not particularly modern. Old style gas pumps and 50 year old diners are the norm. But the food is good, the gas works, and there are plenty of people to talk to over a piece of pie and cup of coffee.

Leaving Fort Nelson, the forest thickened quickly:

Started getting a little mountainous too:

Mountain streams ran alongside the road for many miles:

And lakes appeared out of the mist:

Summit Lake - highest point on the Alaska Hwy - 4,250 ft

This guy had the lake all to himself

Here’s Muncho Lake:

Very beautiful...

Hard to tell in this photo...but the water is a lovely jade green

The lake gets its green hue from leaching minerals in the surrounding mountains.

Looking East out onto Muncho Lake

Big Red checking out the mountains

And there were some animals…

Rock Sheep family

Mrs. Moose


Buncha Bison

I got out of his way...

Black bear #1

His buddy up the road

And, then, there was this guy. Sitting all alone in his own private mud hole. He was looking very dapper as Bison etiquette says that wearing jewelry behind your right ear means “I’m available”:

Hey, baby....whazzup?

Stopped at the Muncho Lake Lodge for a bite. Here’s a taste of their drab interior:

Dining Room

The gentlemen retire here for cigars after dinner...

Tomorrow, I’ll be adding the Marysville city sign to the Signpost Forest. I’ll also post some stuff about the legendary Air Force Lodge where I’m spending the night tonight. It’s legendary…

There’s a whole bunch of random pics in today’s photo album – Check ’em out!


Today’s Travel:  336 miles

Total Travel To Date: 4991 miles


2 responses to “Finding the Real Alaska Highway

  1. I wanna see the bears!!! You better hope I see some bears while I’m there, otherwise, I might be tempted to stick around & ride back with you! Hmmmmm…maybe not REAL tempted ; )

  2. You rock. You have to making many many memories. I know Carol and Kellie are following your story also. The pictures are spectacular.
    Keep on truckin.

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