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Alaska Scenic Byways

Alaska Marine Highway System- Designated as an Alaska State Scenic Byway in recognition of spectacular scenery, abundant wildlife, natural beauty, rich cultural heritage and coastal history.
Alaska Railroad- The Alaska Railroad has been designated an official State Scenic Railroad, in recognition of the spectacular scenery, abundant wildlife, natural attributes, and rich history.
Dalton Highway- Built in the 1970s to haul cargo to and from the nation`s largest oil field, the James Dalton highway was only opened for public use in 1994. The Dalton was recognized as an Alaska State Scenic Byway in 1998 for its spectacular scenery, abundant wildlife, historical attractions and recreation options.
Parks Highway- Parks Highway was designated an Alaska State Scenic Byway, in recognition of spectacular scenery, abundant wildlife and natural beauty.
The Seward Highway- Situated near Anchorage, this 127-mile drive through south-central Alaska takes you through awesome natural beauty on the way to Seward.

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General Information

Description - The toughest challenge facing the Alaska Scenic Byways Program is determining which roads are not scenic. In general, byways designated in Alaska are among the cream of a very scenic crop. Since the program was established in 1993, eleven state byways have been designated, for a total of 4,716 miles of the most picturesque, intermodal transportation routes in our nation's largest state.

In addition to the state designated byways, the Seward Highway is designated as an All-American Road. Situated near Anchorage, this 127-mile drive through south-central Alaska takes you through awesome natural beauty on the way to Seward. Few roads in the United States can offer the diversity of scenic landscapes and unique natural features so concentrated in one area.

Recreation - Byways provide access to numerous recreational sites, facilities and activities. Some of the most popular activities along the byways include hiking, picnicking, biking, fishing, photographing scenery, viewing historic sites and of course scenic driving.

Climate - The climate in Alaska varies with terrain and region. The south-central region of the state is most temperate because it is protected from cold northern winds by the Alaska Range. The large bodies of water that lies closely to this area create a stabilizing factor for the air temperature. Southeast Alaska is wet. An average of 80 inches of rain comes to this region directly from the Gulf of Alaska.

In contrast to the southeastern region, the interior receives very little precipitation. The winters are long in this region with spring, summer and fall taking place from May through September. The western coast of Alaska experiences long, cold winters and short, chilly summers. This area is very far north and at the mercy of huge water bodies that don't warm. Southwestern Alaska experiences foggy, wet summers with high temperatures reaching 60 degrees F. Winters are severe on this long peninsula of land with storms rising from the surrounding waters frequently. The average rainfall for the region is 75 inches/year.

Location - Alaska's Byways travel through scenic and historic areas throughout the state.


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Recreation Opportunities
Activity Remarks On Site
ICON Scenic Driving Alaska Scenic Byways
Yes
ICON Viewing Scenery Alaska Scenic Byways
Yes


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Additional Information:
Alaska - Alaska is a vast territory. The federal lands in this state equal one third the total of the same in the lower 48 states. Recreation opportunities abound in the region although alternative means of transportation are necessary.

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