Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Dalton Highway, 5/13/2014

On the Dalton Highway.  This road is really rough and crazy.  Robert in Fairbanks tried to discourage me from going on this road, telling me that I needed to be prepared to be completely on my own if anything went wrong, and also telling me that he wouldn't do it without a gun.  I mulled it over and I can't say so much that I made a conscious decision to take the Dalton; I just started driving in that direction and kept going.

The first part of this road is, for the most part, some of the worst of it.  There are ruts that look like cattle troughs, large rocks in the road, and sharp objects jutting out of the road, especially bits of sharp shale embedded into the road.  Most of the road is raised many feet above the surrounding countryside so measures can be taken to shield it from the permafrost, so if you were to wreck, you would fall quite a ways.  I had some teeth-chattering, hair-raising moments of life-threatening action, mostly involving either my tires going in a direction they were not pointing in.  Usually this happened when I hit a steep curve with gravelly cover.  Also, I had to suddenly navigate around dangerous road hazards.  I didn't see any other small cars other than mine on this road (other than some of the ones I've posted pictures of that wrecked...they were sobering to pass).

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