The impact of the 800 miles of 48-inch pipe on
Alaska’s economic and social conditions has
been enormous and is on many visitors’ "must
see" list. Construction of the $8 billion pipeline
took place between 1974 and 1977.
less than half of the pipeline is buried. The
remaining pipe is on 78,000 aboveground
supports, located 60 feet apart following a
zigzag pattern to relieve stress from the traveling hot oil. Over 800 rivers and streams had to be
crossed as well as three mountain passes.
Winding from the Arctic region of Prudhoe Bay to the ice-free port of Valdez, the pipeline is visible
near Fairbanks, Glennallen, Delta Junction, Valdez and along the Dalton Highway. The
Dalton, which is known in Alaska as the North Slope Haul Road, is a 414-mile road built during
construction of the pipeline to provide access to remote construction camps.
The highway begins
at milepost 73.1 on the Elliott Highway and ends at Deadhorse. Permits are no longer required
to drive the gravel highway. Services are very limited and are only available at milepost 56 and
milepost 175 at Coldfoot. Travelers should be prepared to drive slowly as the gravel road is
very rough. There are four designated campgrounds along the Dalton Highway, and several
The Trans-Alaska Pipeline