The Yukon Party Memorial Highway

The Yukon Party Memorial Highway Re Tourism Promotion a Shot in the Dark, (the News, July 20): I have been in Whitehorse since early May, visiting relatives and exploring the beautiful Yukon. This is a truly spectacular part of our country. During my ti

Re Tourism Promotion a Shot in the Dark, (the News, July 20):

I have been in Whitehorse since early May, visiting relatives and exploring the beautiful Yukon. This is a truly spectacular part of our country.

During my time here, I drove to Dawson City for a few days and then to Alaska via the Alaska Highway. My time spent exploring the Yukon has been wonderful.

However, I must comment on the abominable condition of your major highways. There are two lengthy sections of gravel between Pelly Crossing and Dawson City. One of these sections was so dusty, with washboards and potholes, that I could only travel at 20 kilometres per hour for fear my older motorhome would vibrate apart.

The Alaska Highway from Sheep Mountain to Beaver Creek was no better: more than 50 kilometres of dust and deplorable driving conditions. The piece of highway by Sheep Mountain was in the same gravel state that it was in during my last visit five years ago! Why are these main highways not re-asphalted in a timely manner? It is inexcusable for your roads to be in this condition.

The US Customs official at Beaver Creek laughed when I commented on the Yukon roads. He said, “You’re in Alaska now; all our roads are good.”

He was right.

I drove more than 1,700 kilometres in Alaska and all their roads were great. One cannot use the argument that Yukon roads are subject to frost heaves and permafrost conditions. Surely, Alaska has the same challenges. Yet on a scale of 1 to 10, Alaska would get a 9, while Yukon roads would get a poor 3.

How can you attract tourists and generate all-important revenue with such a poorly maintained road system?

Yukoners and visitors to this beautiful landscape deserve better! Write your elected officials and tell them to reallocate funding necessary to fix your highways.

Christopher Bruntlett

Edmonton