Top of the World Highway
The Top of the World Highway, 105
kilometres(66 miles) long, connects West Dawson (across the Yukon Riverfrom Dawson City) in the Yukon Territorywith the Alaska, USAborder, and continues for another 13 miles in Alaska, where it then joins the Taylor Highway (Alaska Route 5). The highway existed at least as long ago as 1955, and possibly longer, as it was the only road access to Dawson City until completion of the Klondike Highwayin late 1955 from Stewart Crossing. The highway is closed in winter, and is hard-surfaced with Bituminous Surface Treatment.
The highway is so named because, along much of its length, it skirts the crest of the hills, giving looks down on the valleys. It is not particularly safe in winter, even for
snowmobileuse, due to the lack of trees for shelter.
ferryconnects West Dawson to Dawson in summer, and residents living in West Dawson and nearby Sunnydale cross on the ice during the winter. A bridgeis presently planned by the Yukon government, although there is significant division among Dawson area residents as to whether such a bridge should be built. The west-bank residents only recently received improved phone service in 2004, but do not have a public electricity supply.
A 30 mile branch road off the highway was used to reach the town of
Clinton Creek, Yukon, site of a former asbestosmine shut down since 1979.
The border, known as Little Gold Creek in Canada and Poker Creek in the U.S., features one of the few jointly-built single building customs ports of entry along the
Canada-U.S. border. There is presently a one-hour difference in standard time zones at this border, which is only open in summer during the 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. period (Alaska time). The immense Alaskan Taylor Complex wildfireof 2004 burned up to the Canadian border and was visible from the westernmost portions of the highway.
List of Yukon territorial highways
* [http://www.nps.gov/bela/ Bering Land Bridge National preserve]
* [http://www.transglobalhighway.com Trans-Global Highway]
* [http://www.beringia.com/ Yukon Beringia Interpretive Centre]
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