3 Best Sights in Tok, Fairbanks, the Yukon, and the Interior

Taylor Highway

The 160-mile Taylor Highway runs north from the Alaska Highway at Tetlin Junction, 12 miles east of Tok. It's a narrow rough-gravel road that winds along mountain ridges and through valleys of the Fortymile River. The road passes the tiny community of Chicken and ends in Eagle at the Yukon River. This is one of only three places in Alaska where the Yukon River can be reached by road. The Top of the World Highway starts off the Taylor and leads to Dawson City in the Yukon Territory. The route is far more scenic, and shorter, than the alternative of taking the Alaska Highway to Whitehorse and then turning north, but it's another of those stretches for which it's good to make sure your insurance policy covers towing and windshield replacement. The highway is not plowed in winter, so it is snowed shut from fall to spring. If you're roughing it, know that the Bureau of Land Management also maintains three first-come, first-served campsites (as all BLM campsites are) on the Taylor Highway at Miles 49, 82, and 160; the last is located at the end of the road in Eagle.

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Tetlin National Wildlife Refuge

This 700,000-acre refuge has most of the charismatic megafauna that visitors travel to Alaska to see, including black and grizzly bears, moose, Dall sheep, wolves, caribou, and tons of birds. Covering just south of the Alaska Highway east of the town of Tok all the way to the U.S.–Canada border, the refuge has a visitor center at Mile 1,229. A large deck here has spotting scopes, and inside are maps, books, and wildlife exhibits, as well as a board with information on current road conditions. At Mile 1,240 you can hike a 1-mile raised-plank boardwalk through lowland forest to scenic Hidden Lake. Basic lakefront campgrounds can be found at Miles 1,249 and 1,256 during the summer season.

Tok Main Street Visitor Center

To help with your planning, stop in at Tok's visitor center, which has travel information covering the entire state, as well as wildlife and natural-history exhibits. This is one of Alaska's largest info centers, and the staff is quite helpful.

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