National Scenic Byways and Other Recreational Drives
Driving Alaska's Haul Road
Traveling on the exhilarating, desolate Dalton Highway to the Arctic Ocean.
By the Light of the Midnight Sun
Driving the highways around Fairbanks the Steese, Elliott and Dalton.
Originally a"grease trail" used by the indigenous Tlingit Indians to carry rendered oil, baskets and shells inland, this road connects the Alaska Highway, in the Yukon, with the tidewater fjords of Haines, Alaska.
Hike, bike, paddle and explore along the original gateway to Denali National Park. Best enjoyed at a leisurely pass, with sidetrips to pristine alpine tundra and wild rivers.
Denali National Park
One wonderful option for seeing Denali is to take park shuttle bus for either an 8 hour round trip excursion to Eielson Visitor Center, 66 miles into the park, or the 11 hour round trip ride to Wonder Lake, 86 miles into the park. The scenery along the road is simply breathtaking. The park road also runs through some of the richest wildlife habitat in Denali. Riding on a shuttle bus enhances your chances of spotting wildlife, since there are many pairs of alert eyes concentrating on the landscape rather than just your own. Keep in mind that the more time you spend in the park, the better your chances of seeing animals. See the Denali Road Guide for a longer description
Denali National Park
Drive the first 14 miles of the park road to the Savage River. This is a beautiful ride between theAlaska Range to the south and the Outer Range to the north. On a clear day, you can see Mt. McKinleyfrom mile 9. Keep your eyes open for moose, caribou, grizzlies and wolves which frequent the area.
Formerly known as the Haul Road, is maintained by the state of Alaska and serves primarily as a supply route for the Prudhoe Bay oilfields. It is the only highway in Alaska where you can cross the Arctic Circle and access the scenic Brooks Range. The highway is open to recreational travel as far as a checkpoint operated by the state of Alaska. Drivers should be alert for truck traffic on the narrow road. The only service facilities are at the Yukon River (130 miles north of Fairbanks) and at Coldfoot (120 miles north of the Yukon River bridge). Recreationists are urged to contact the Alaska Department of Transportation, 2301 Peger Road, Fairbanks, Alaska 99707, to obtain current road conditions and other information before attempting this trip.See Dalton Road Guide for more information
Officially designated as Alaska Route 2, this is a mostly gravel road running from Fox to Manley Hot Springs. The road traverses some truly pristine country. Be aware that there are few service stations along the route!
George Parks Highway
Officially designated as Alaska Route 3, the Parks connects Anchorage and Fairbanks passing through some truely amazing scenery. The highlight attraction along the route is Denali National Park and Denali, the tallest peak on the continent.
Riding Alaska's Marine Highway System through the Inside Passage.
Seward Highway National Scenic Byway
Chugach National Forest
Connecting Anchorage and Seward, the spectacular 127-mile Seward Highway National Scenic Byway winds its way past one Alaska postcard after another. The highway travels through a mix of saltwater bays, hanging glaciers, jagged ridges and alpine meadows. This magnificent scenery in conjunction with wildlife viewing, recreation, and interpretive opportunities on the Kenai Peninsula combines to make Seward Highway the most popular travel route in Alaska. Fifteen national forest camp grounds, 17 public use cabins and more than 200 miles of trail await visitors to the Kenai Mountains.
The oldest established route in the interior of the state, the Steese extends between Fairbanks and Circle traversing several high alpine passes in the White Mountains and passing hot-springs resorts near Central. Note that the route is paved from Fairbanks to Chatanika but then turns to gravel for the remained of the trips.
Details mentioned in this article were accurate at the time of publication