Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Painted Yellow Lines

It's only natural to think that in places as desolate as Alaska and northwestern Canada, that road conditions probably aren't going to be all that great. On the other hand, they say that you should be fine taking pretty much any kind of car you want up to Alaska. So, I'm not really sure what to expect with the roads when we make this Alaska trip.

Google Street View to the rescue!

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This is the Alaska Highway, somewhere in Yukon. Looks like fun, eh?

Actually, from what I've seen on Google Street View and read in publications such as "The Milepost", most of the Alaska Highway - and the other roads we'll be taking on our trip - are in pretty good shape, all things considered. The stretch of road pictured above is actually one of the few sections of road without painted yellow lines.

Painted yellow lines don't sound like a big deal at first, but actually, they're quite nice.

This is rural Virginia (picture taken during Saturday's day trip), where many roads are quite narrow and do not have painted yellow lines. So when another car is coming in the opposite direction, you kind of have to hold your breath. As it turns out, yellow lines are indeed a luxury.

It's hard to get perspective from Google Street View regarding how wide these roads are, but here's hoping these roads are a little wider than all of those 600-series roads in Virginia are. The flow of traffic will be a bit faster on the Alaska Highway than in Nottoway County, Virginia, and I don't want to end up in that pretty blue lake.

I'm also expecting to see a lot of this on our drive up north:

We saw a lot of this on our last major trip through Canada, and given that it's construction season, I expect much more on this trip. I read somewhere (probably in "The Milepost") that for some construction zones, the delays are so long, they provide portable toilets on either end of the construction zone so that the drivers can pee while they wait. Sounds like fun!

This drive to Alaska will definitely have an adventure feel to it. That's why Amber and I are doing it now, while we still have it in us.

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