Denali Highway Travel Tip:
When traveling the Denali Highway, be prepared for any kind of weather, anytime! It can be hot and sunny one day and cold, rainy and windy the next. It can snow any month of the year!
The Denali Highway is about 135 miles long and connects Paxson Lodge on the Richardson Highway with the Cantwell junction on the Parks Highway. A loop trip originating and returning to Fairbanks is about 436 miles. A loop trip from Anchorage is close to 600 miles. Allow several days travel for either of these trips.
The highway is generally open from mid-May to October 1; do not attempt to travel the road by vehicle outside of these dates as snowdrifts can block your way and leave you stranded. The road is paved only for the first 21 miles west of Paxson and 3 miles east of the Cantwell Junction. When driving on gravel, SLOW DOWN before and while passing another vehicle. Just one small flying rock can damage a windshield and it could be yours! The maximum recommended speed for travel when no other vehicles are in sight is 30 mph. To get the latest information on the Denali Road condition, phone 511 in the state of Alaska, phone 1-866-282-7577 outside of the state. Or check the web at http://511.alaska.gov
Before you go...be sure your vehicle is in good working order. If you are in a rental vehicle, consult with your rental agency before driving the highway as some rental agencies do not allow their vehicles to travel the Denali Highway. Check your spare tire and see that you have a jack and lug wrench. Carry extra water and sufficient food for an emergency situation. You cannot predict how long it will take to get help if you become stranded. Limited services are available at distances of 20 to 40 miles apart along the Denali Highway.
Rocks, Ridges and Glaciers
This Denali Highway guidebook provides 92 colorful pages of milepost-by-milepost explanation of the spectacular features you will see traveling the Denali Highway between Paxson and Cantwell.
Copies are available over-the-counter for $10 each at BLM's Glennallen Field Office during weekday hours or you can order your copy by calling the Glennallen Field Office at (907) 822-3217. If ordering by phone there will be a $3.00 postage fee.