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Astronauts say they can see it from space, but visitors to Alaska don't have to go that far to see one of engineering's modern marvels, the Trans-Alaska Pipeline.
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 at 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 north of Fairbanks 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 informal campsites.