Thursday, April 4, 2013

D is for Dalton Highway

Source: Wikimedia Commons

The Dalton Highway is a 414 mile road that begins a few miles north of Fairbanks, Alaska and ends near the Arctic Ocean at Deadhorse. It is one of the most isolated roads in the United States, as there are only three towns along the entire 414 mile route: Coldfoot, Wiseman, and Deadhorse.

The highway has achieved fame in recent years through the History Channel show Ice Road Truckers. In spite of its isolation, the road is heavily traveled by trucks, and sees as many as 250 a day during the winter months.

Considering this picture of the Highway in August, I can't imagine what it must be like in the winter.

Source: Wikimedia Commons
The highway has also been featured on the BBC series The World's Most Dangerous Roads, and truckers have given nicknames to some of the road's more dangerous features. These include "The Roller Coaster," "Oil Spill Hill," and, my favorite, "Oh Shit Corner." I don't think I even want to know what that corner is like.

Have you ever traveled on The Dalton Highway or seen it on TV?

My A-Z theme of Alaska is inspired by my debut novel, Polar Night, which is set in the Alaskan Arctic. Click here for all the info on the book.


  1. Only three stops? Crappy place to run out of gas!

  2. Hi Julie - connecting with old blogging buds and came across you! I love your theme this year - I've never been to Alaska but my bro lives in the North West Territories and my fella's family is in Labrador which I'm a fair-bit obsessed with! I'll pay attention to you now I know where you are!Jan Morrison

  3. Loved this post (and am going to previous posts as your theme is fabulous). I've read articles that mentioned this road but had never seen a photo of it. Wow, really desolate! Don't think I'd want to drive it!

  4. 3 stops?... That would be a boring drive. Looks very cold.
    Dani & Jax @ Cover Girls

  5. There is a road in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan where I live and it's only 20 miles long but straight, in the middle of nowhere and in the winter it is awful. I can only imagine what the Dalton Highway must be like!

  6. Interesting theme. Going to check out the book.

  7. So much for the road less traveled... as long as it has only 3 stops I will be looking for a different route. I like pit stops.
    Dani @ Entertaining Interests

  8. I think this is the highway my parents told me about on their RV trip to Alaska. Yikes.

  9. I've never even heard of it and it certainly sounds dangerous.

  10. Haven't driven the Dalton Hwy, but I would love to. I think I'd even enjoy "Oh Shit Corner."

  11. @Alex, yeah, I know I'd be checking my tank before I left LOL.

    @Jan, oh, hello! It's so great to see you, thanks! :)

    @Kittie, thanks! And I know I wouldn't want to drive it, I'd freak out LOL.

    @Dani, I agree.

    @Regina, I can imagine the Upper Peninsula is tough in winter, I wouldn't want to drive that road either.

    @Beth, thanks!

    @Dani, me too LOL.

    @Ciara, oh, I bet that was an exciting trip your parents had, I can't imagine.

    @Inger, definitely.

    @Tim, LOL, I'm a total chicken so I know I wouldn't do well.

  12. No, have never been there and don't think I'd care to go.

    The BBC series and the nicknames have already scared me away!

    D is for: Deadlines
    The Daille-y News

  13. well, that's ONE road I would not like to break down on...

  14. "Oh Shit Corner."...I love this, lol :)

    Looks like a very lonely stretch of road...regardless of how many people are on it.

  15. It looks so isolated and cold!

  16. I would NOT like to run out of gas on this particular road!!

  17. I avoid our mountain passes in this kind of weather. I'd hate to be a truck driver. Definitely not my work-personality preference. I'd be too white-knuckled!

  18. Looks like the most depressing road on earth.

  19. Okay, "Oh Shit Corner" is one of the places I'll scratch from my tour to Alaska! :D

  20. I could only imagine getting lost on a snowy night on Dalton Highway without a restroom in sight.


  21. I have seen the road on TV but never traveled it. Very interesting background for your novel.

  22. That is one desolate road! I think I can live my life without traveling that one!

  23. oh-you hinted at this one yesterday! :) Wow...only three towns along the way- will have to pack your own gas on this desolate- not some place I would want to get stranded.

  24. I am very familiar with Ice Road Truckers. My DH is a reality show junkie.

  25. @Barbara, me too!

    @Nicki, isn't it awful?

    @Sandra, no kidding, yikes.

    @Mark, LOL, not surprised you like that one. :D

    @MJ, definitely!

    @Michelle, no doubt, I'd have a heart attack for sure.

    @Julie, me too. I'd never make it through the first day.

    @Nancy, have to agree there.

    @Al, LOL, good thinking.

    @Julie, the no restrooms is almost the worst part of it LOL.

    @Susan, thanks!

    @Amy, I can too, no doubt.

    @Rebecca, yeah, I wouldn't even want to take the chance, I'd just avoid the road LOL.

    @Brinda, I'm kind of curious about the show now, I've never seen it.

  26. That's one scary road. And long. I've never been to Alaska, but some day I hope to go. Loved that last named corner, lol!

  27. August? Wow. Definitely wouldn't want to travel it in January.

  28. That certainly doesn't sound like a road I want to be driving on! Love the name of 'oh shit corner', haha!

  29. Brrrr! I get chilly just looking shots of the Dalton Highway.

    Wouldn't that be an awful place to break down, even if you had AAA?

    ~Tui, from #AtoZchallenge

  30. I have never heard of the road and never ever want to be on it. "Oh shit Corner" doesn't sound good at all!!!

  31. No wonder Alaska made a perfect setting for a creepy vampire movie I watched that had Josh Hartnett in it.

  32. That's August? And I thought the weather around here was bad. I'd be staying away from O Shit corner, too.

  33. "Oh, Shit Corner" LOL
    I do like that top picture though.

  34. If I ever had to travel on it I feel like I would get depressed a little. I like variety when I drive :P

    Also, what if you have to use the bathroom?!

    Thanks for sharing.

  35. YES!!! I've traveled here. My dad, who I mentioned earlier worked up in Alaska a few weeks at a time, worked up at Deadhorse (which I thought was just the name of the Alaska Airlines base for planes that needed serious work) outside of Prudhoe Bay. I've ridden in a van on that road in the spring months - I think it was March or April, and it was all white, for as far as the eye could see.

  36. Would love to have seen that program!!! At least the road seems fairly straight, except for the err corner you mentioned !! lol

  37. I've watched Ice Road Truckers before. Crazy to drive on roads like that!

  38. I've seen it on Ice Road Truckers and that was enough for me. Even in August the road looks scary!

    Jenn @Scribbles From Jenn

  39. I'm in the UK, as far as I'm aware with have nothing like this!

    My OH watches Road Truckers on Sky TV, I'll check with him if he has heard of it before...

  40. I've seen Ice Road Truckers quite a bit. Amazing how the road and truck become their entire life - I don't think I'd try driving it!

  41. I like Oh Shit Corner, made me laugh!

  42. What an interesting post. I've never heard of Dalton Highway but it looks ominous!

  43. I don't think I'd be driving on that road. A bit too scary for me. My sister and brother in law love Ice Road Truckers, but I've never seen it.

  44. Roads like this were way common in Iceland. We pulled over and peed on the side of the road there, too.

  45. I love Alaska! I've been twice and can't wait to go back. Never been on Dalton Highway though.
    Checkin' in from the A to Z Challenge.
    Peanut Butter and Whine

  46. wow 250 trucks a day! Not what I expected for such an isolated area.

  47. Right now considering the icky humidity that is still plaguing me, I'd be quite thrilled in a white wasteland like that in those images ;)

  48. Hahaha, I love Oh Shit Corner! I can only imagine. My hubby watches the show sometimes, so it's quite possible I've seen it in passing. I do not envy those guys their jobs.

    Shannon at The Warrior Muse

  49. This is my first time hearing about the Dalton Highway. And...that picture is from August?! *dies*

  50. I really wouldn't want to be there in the winter. This is the first time I've heard about this road.

  51. @Gwen, I hope to go too, but I'll definitely avoid driving on this road.

    @Carol, isn't it crazy?

    @Jodie, me too LOL.

    @Tui, LOL, I wonder if AAA could make it up there? I can just imagine their reaction if they got that call.

    @Lucy, my thoughts exactly.

    @Michael, oh, I've never seen that, I'll have to look it up.

    @Mary, it's nuts, I can't imagine it.

    @Elise, me too, thought that one was pretty but the second one creeped me out.

    @Samantha, yeah, I'd go nuts without any rest areas to stop at!

    @Tyrean, oh wow, that sounds sp pretty but also ominous! I can't believe that's how it looks even in the spring.

    @Carolyn, yeah, that one must be the killer. I think that show would be interesting too, I'd never heard of it before.

    @Christine, I have enough trouble sometimes driving around here so I can't imagine LOL.

    @Jenn, I'm really curious to see Truckers now.

    @Maria, I don't think we have anything even close to this where I live either, hard to imagine it!

    @Nick, I know I wouldn't but I am so curious about the Truckers show now.

    @Cathrina, me too! :D

    @Karen, it definitely does, thanks!

    @Krista, too scary for me as well, I am a total chicken LOL.

    @Al, LOL, I guess you have to do what you have to do.

    @Connie, oh, I bet you had great trips, I hope to go sometime too.

    @Lynda, I know, I guess they are all the oil company trucks but it still seems hard to imagine.

    @Trisha, you really must have the worst humidity on earth, I can imagine how gross it must be!

    @Shannon, me too, LOL.

    @Heather, makes you wonder what it would look like in January, doesn't it? Crazy!

    @Medeia, me neither, I'd stay far away.

    @Sheena, I'm a librarian so maybe it is second nature LOL. Thanks!

  52. Wow that would be some road trip!

  53. @Pk, I agree. Not one I'd want to take LOL.

  54. I drove through death valley once and knowing that i'd be in greater than a 100 degree heat with close to 70 miles before the next gas station scared the living crap out of me. Being on a highway with negative 100 degree cold with more than 100 miles before the next gas station is more than I'd ever be willing to face.


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