The Alaska Highway By the Numbers

August 16, 2018

The Alaska Highway is an incredible road – here are some numbers to give you an idea about just how incredible it is:

 

Current Length: Approximately 1,390 miles (2,237 km)

Original Length: Approximately 1,422 miles (2,288 km)

 

From its creation, those in charge of the Alaska Highway have worked to shorten its length – hence why it is now 32 miles (51 km) shorter than it was when the U.S. Army constructed it in 1942.

 

Length of Time to Build: 7 months

 

Constructed through some of the most inhospitable terrain in North America, the U.S. Army only took 7 months to construct the Alaska Highway. I’m sure everyone can think of a local road construction project

that took far longer and involved a much shorter length of road!

 

Biggest City Along the Highway: Whitehorse

Population: 25,085

 

The biggest city on the Alaska Highway is Whitehorse, which is also the biggest city in the Yukon. Watson Lake, the third biggest city in the Yukon, is also along the Highway – and it only has 790 people.

 

Coldest Temperature Along the Highway: -81.4° F (-63° C)

On February 3, 1947, the community of Snag recorded a temperature of -81.4° F (-63° C). It was so cold, the thermometers in town bottomed out at -80° F (-62° C). Those who ventured outside risked getting freezer burn on their lungs if they inhaled too deeply, and if you exhaled, your breath froze instantly and fell to the ground as white powder.

Want to learn more about the Alaska Highway? Get your own copy of 101 Travel Bits: The Alaska Highway, available for free through Kindle Unlimited, or for only $3.99 for the e-book.

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