British Columbia Highway 97
The British Columbia Highway 97 with 2175 km the longest continuous highway in the province of British Columbia in western Canada. Parts of the highway are part of the Canadian National Highway System as a so-called core route and feeder route .
The highway is divided into the four sections Okanagan Highway , Cariboo Highway , John Hart Highway and Alaska Highway due to historical and natural conditions .
The section between the border with Washington State ( United States of America ) and the confluence with Highway 1 , the Trans-Canada Highway , is called the Okanagan Highway . The road, which turns into US Highway 97 at the border crossing to Oroville , follows the Okanagan Valley between Osoyoos and Vernon and then heads northwest on the northern edge of the Thompson Plateau to Monte Creek, where it joins the Trans-Canada Highway. Together with this it leads through the valley of the South Thompson River to Kamloops and further in the valley of the Thompson River to Cache Creek . The stretch between the border crossing and the confluence with the Trans-Canada Highway has a length of 273 kilometers, in the greater Kelowna area the highway is developed like a freeway.
The section in which Highway 1 and Highway 97 run on the same route is 99 kilometers long.
Important roads already cross the highway in this section or flow into it:
- Crowsnest Highway ( Highway 3 ) in Osoyoos to Hope or Castlegar and Cranbrook
- Highway 33 in Kelowna to Rock Creek
- Highway 6 in Vernon to Arrow Lakes and Nelson
Highway 97A is a branch line of Highway 97, which connects Vernon and Sicamous on Highway 1. It runs largely in a northerly direction and opens up the northern Okanagan Valley. This road has a length of 70 kilometers.
Highway 97B is a short section of road which the Highway 97A in Grindrod with the Highway 1 in Salmon Arm on Shuswap Lake connects. It's only about 14 kilometers long.
Highway 97C (eastern section)
Highway 97C is divided into two parts; the eastern part leads from the west bank of Okanagan Lake near Peachland over 82 kilometers to Aspen Grove on Highway 5A . It is developed like a motorway and forms the main connection to the Coquihalla Highway (Yellowhead Highway 5 ).
Highway 97C (western section)
From Merrit to Boston Flats - located between Ashcroft and Cache Creek on Highway 1 - this section of road runs over the Nicola Plateau and the Thompson Plateau to the northwest and connects the Coquihalla Highway with the Cariboo Highway over a distance of 108 kilometers.
Previously designated as Meadow Creek Road between Logan Lake on the western portion of Highway 97C and Exit 336 of Yellowhead Highway 5 (Coquihalla Highway) near Lac Le Jeune, the road was officially renamed British Columbia Highway 97D in 2005. It allows faster access from Kamloops to the central part of the Thompson Plateau.
In Cache Creek , Highway 1, which runs south from here in the direction of Hope and Vancouver , and Highway 97, which turns north and is known as the Cariboo Highway for the next 441 kilometers to Prince George , separate. The entire route to Dawson Creek is part of the West Access Route from Seattle to the Alaska Highway. The road leads more or less steadily to the north and, after crossing the Green Timber Plateau, follows the valleys of the San Jose River and the Fraser River .
In this section of the route, too, a number of important roads depart from or cross Highway 97:
- Highway 99 at Carquile to Lillooet , Whistler , Squamish and Vancouver
- Highway 24 at 93 mile to Lone Butte, Yellowhead Highway 5, and Wells Gray Provincial Park
- Highway 20 at Williams Lake to Bella Coola and Tweedsmuir South Provincial Park
- Highway 26 at Quesnel to Barkerville and Bowron Lake Provincial Park
- Yellowhead Highway ( Highway 16 ) at Prince George to Jasper and Edmonton or Prince Rupert
John Hart Highway
The next section of Highway 97 extends from the junction with Yellowhead Highway 16 in Prince George to the junction with Provincial Highway 2 in Dawson Creek . This section is 405 kilometers long and leads in a wide arc first to the north and, after crossing the Pine Pass, to the east.
Leaving the valley of the Fraser River only 40 kilometers north of Prince George, the continental divide between the river systems of the Fraser River and the Mackenzie River is crossed south of Summit Lake . The only 933 m high Pine Pass is the lowest crossing over the Rocky Mountains in British Columbia, at the same time the border between the Pacific Time Zone and Mountain Time Zone is crossed.
Due to the low population density north of the Fraser River Valley, the number of roads crossing or flowing into it is few:
- Highway 39 at McLeod Lake to Mackenzie
- Highway 29 at Chetwynd to Tumbler Ridge or Hudson's Hope and Highway 97 north of Charlie Lake
- Highway 52 at Arras to Fellers Heights, Tumbler Ridge and to the Alberta border at Tupper
- Highway 2 at Dawson Creek to the border to Alberta at Tupper and from there as Highway 43 to Grande Prairie and Edmonton
- Highway 49 at Dawson Creek to the Alberta border at Bay Tree and on as Highway 49 to Rycroft and Valleyview
The northernmost section of Highway 97 opens up the almost deserted north of the province of British Columbia and is the main connection to the Yukon Territory and Alaska . It first leads north over a distance of about 970 kilometers and turns to the northwest after Fort Nelson . At Contact Creek it leaves British Columbia for the first time, but runs over a distance of around 250 kilometers along the border between the Yukon Territory - where it is known as Highway 1 - and British Columbia. Just before reaching Teslin Lake , the Alaska Highway crosses the sixtieth degree north latitude for the last time and thus the border.
The Rocky Mountains are crossed on two passes in the section between Ford Nelson and the Liard River, the Summit Pass is 1,295 m high, the Muncho Pass, about 90 kilometers to the west, is 1,100 m high.
Highway 29, which branches off at Chetwynd in the direction of Hudson's Hope - this section is also known as the Hudson's Hope Loop - joins Highway 97 again at Charlie Lake twelve kilometers north of Fort St. John .
In addition to some roads that are used exclusively for the exploration of deposits and wood processing, the Liard Highway (Highway 77) goes 28 kilometers northwest of Ford Nelson , which is an important connection to the northwest of the Northwest Territories and to Fort Liard and on to Fort Simpson leads.
The Alaska Highway is part of the CANAMEX Corridor . This trade route was defined under the North American Free Trade Agreement and is used for transportation between Canada, the United States and Mexico.
The southern sections - Okanagan Highway and Cariboo Highway - are largely based on historical routes to develop the central part of British Columbia.
Okanagan Trail and Okanagan Highway
The Okanagan Trail was the main entrance from Oregon and the central part of what is now Washington State to the gold fields of the Fraser Canyon gold rush of 1858/59. He followed a route that the fur traders of the Hudson's Bay Company had already developed to reach Fort Vancouver on the Columbia River . Initially, boats were mainly used to transport people and materials, but the establishment of cities along the route also led to the expansion of the infrastructure.
The first settlements emerged around 1860, but the population density remained low until well into the 20th century. The expansion of the road connections did not take place as part of a project, as was the case with the John Hart Highway or the Alaska Highway, but rather the resulting settlements were connected by the course of the Okanagan Trail as far as possible following roads, which is still documented in the course of the road today.
The 1958 built Okanagan Lake Bridge between Westside and Kelowna closed the last gap in the Okanagan Highway.
Cariboo Highway, Cariboo Wagon Road, and Old Cariboo Road
Construction of the Cariboo Road - also known as the Cariboo Wagon Road - began as early as 1862 on the instructions of the Governor of British Columbia, James Douglas . It led over 640 kilometers from Fort Yale in the Fraser River Canyon to Barkerville and formed the forerunner of today's highway between Cache Creek and Quesnel. The main interest in the construction of the 6 meter wide road lay in securing the gold discoveries in the Cariboo region, at the same time a - ultimately failed - road connection to Edmonton in Alberta was to be created in order to improve the connection between British Columbia and the rest of Canada .
The Old Cariboo Road was a road leading from Lillooet to Alexandria , which was built on a different route, but for the same purpose. Construction began ready in 1859. It was a toll road privately financed by Gustavus Blin-Wright ; The steamship that went to Quesnellemouthe - today's Quesnel - also belonged to this entrepreneur. The Cariboo Route followed this road from Clinton and made the use of ships on the Fraser River in this section initially obsolete by extending it to Quesnel and Barkerville.
Today's place names - such as 100 Mile House or 150 Mile House - go back to rest houses along Old Cariboo Road, the distance information contained in the name refers to the starting point of this street in Lillooet.
The construction of the railroad in Fraser Canyon resulted in destruction of the road in the 1880s; The route between Yale and Quesnel was not restored as a gravel road until 1922, and the connection from Prince Rupert only began with the outbreak of World War II.
John Hart Highway
The John Hart Highway - named after former British Columbia Prime Minister John Hart - is the youngest section of the highway. Its namesake campaigned to close the gap between Prince George and Dawson Creek, so that construction of this section began after the end of World War II. This section of the route was not completed until 1952.
The Alaska Highway was built due to the danger of a Japanese invasion in Alaska after the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1942/43; the section in British Columbia was only placed under the supervision of the Canadian authorities after the end of the war. Civilians have also been able to use this stretch of road since 1947, but the routing is constantly being changed.
There are numerous provincial parks and other protected areas along the route.
The kilometer information relates to the southern starting point of the section.
- 1 km - Osoyoos Desert Center
- 5 km - Sẁiẁs Provincial Park
- 37 km - Vaseux Provincial Protected Area / White Lake Provincial Protected Area
- 42 km - Vaseux Lake Provincial Park
- 29 mi - Okanagan Falls Provincial Park
- 75 km - Kickininee Provincial Park
- 78 km - Sun-Oka Beach Provincial Park
- 100 km - Okanagan Lake Provincial Park
- 104 km - Antlers Beach / Hardy Falls Regional Park
- 130 km - Okanagan Mountain Provincial Park (approx. 15 km south, access via Pandosy St. and Lakeshore Rd.)
- 136 km - Myra Belleve Provincial Protected Area (approximately eight kilometers southeast, accessed via Spall Rd., KLO Rd. And Little White Forest Rd.)
- 175 km - Kekuli Bay Provincial Park
- 180 km - Kalamalka Lake Provincial Park (approximately six kilometers east, access from Westkal Rd. And Cosens Bay Rd.)
- 182 km - Silver Star Provincial Park (approx. 20 km northeast, access via Silver Star Rd.)
- 253 km - Monte Lake Provincial Park
- 273 km - Monte Creek Provincial Park
- 46 km - Enderby Cliffs Provincial Protected Area
- 57 km - Mara Provincial Park
- 62 km - Upper Violet Creek Provincial Park
Highway 97C (eastern section)
- 18 km - Trepanier Provincial Protected Area
- 45 km - Pennask Provincial Protected Area
- 78 km - Kentucky Alleyne Provincial Park
Highway 97C (western section)
- 49 km - Tunkwa Provincial Park (approximately twelve kilometers north, access from Logan Lake Rd. / Tunkwa Lake Rd.)
- 105 km - Elephant Hill Provincial Park
- 11 km - Hat Creek Ranch Provincial Historic Site (approximately two miles west, accessed on Highway 99)
- 25 mi - Marble Range Provincial Park (approximately five miles southwest, accessed from Kelly Lake Rd.)
- 40 km - Drowning Provincial Park (14 km southwest, access from Kelly Lake Rd.)
- 40 km - Edge Hills (17 km southwest, access from Kelly Lake Rd.)
- 56 km - Chasm Provincial Park (approximately four kilometers east, accessed from Chasm Rd.)
- 56 km - Churn Creek Provincial Park (approx. 60 km northwest, access from Dog Creek Rd.)
- 94 km - Flat Lake Provincial Park (approximately two kilometers west, accessed from Davis Lake Rd.)
- 116 km - Schoolhouse Lake Provincial Park (approximately 25 km northeast, accessed from Canim Lake Rd., Ruth Lake Rd. And Hawkins Lake Rd.)
- 153 km - Lac La Hache Provincial Park
- 156 km - Cariboo Nature Provincial Park
- 327 km - Pinnacles Provincial Park (approximately three kilometers west, accessed from Nazko Highway)
- 340 km - Ten Mile Lake Provincial Park
- 385 km - Three Sisters Lake Provincial Park (approximately eight kilometers northeast)
John Hart Highway
- 27 km - Giscome Portage Trail Provincial Park
- 71 km - Crooked River Provincial Park
- 125 km - Whisker's Point Provincial Park
- 144 km - Tudyah Lake Provincial Park
- 186 km - Bijoux Falls Provincial Park
- 192 km - Pine LeMoray Provincial Park
- 314 km - Pine River Breaks Provincial Park
- 335 km - East Pine Provincial Park
- 28 km - Kiskatinaw Provincial Park
- 55 km - Taylor Landing Provincial Park
- 80 km - Beatton Provincial Park (approximately eight kilometers northeast)
- 84 km - Charlie Lake Provincial Park
- 279 km - Buckinghorse River Provincial Park
- 349 km - Prophet River Wayside Provincial Park
- 426 km - Andy Bailey Lake Provincial Park (seven miles east)
- 509 km - Kledo Creek Provincial Park
- 554 km - Tetsa River Provincial Park
- 594 km - Stone Mountain Provincial Park
- 655 km - Muncho Lake Provincial Park
- 765 km - Liard River Hotsprings Provincial Park
- 937 km - Hyland River Provincial Park
- ^ Official Numbered Routes in British Columbia. Government of British Columbia, accessed December 6, 2018 .
- ↑ Landmark Kilometer Inventory (LKI). Government of British Columbia, accessed December 6, 2018 .
- ↑ Canada's National Highway System - Annual Report 2017. (PDF) Council of Ministers Responsible for Transportation and Highway Safety, accessed on August 28, 2019 .