British Columbia provincial highway 37

From Academic Kids

British Columbia provincial highway 37, the Cassiar Highway, is the northwesternmost highway in the province, and it is very scenic, passing through some of the most isolated areas of B.C. The highway first gained its '37' designation in 1975, and at that time, its southern terminus was at the community of New Hazelton on the Yellowhead Highway. In 1979, with the completion of a new bridge, the highway's Yellowhead junction was relocated to a point on Highway 16 just south of the site of Kitwanga. Highway 37 was then extended south to Kitimat in 1986, using a stretch of road that was previously designated Highway 25. Although most of the highway is paved, there are two long sections (roughly 20 km each) north of Meziadin Junction that are oil-treated gravel.

Route details

Highway 37 starts its 874 km journey in the south at Kitimat. 59 km north, Highway 37 reaches Terrace, where it merges onto the Yellowhead Highway. The Yellowhead carries Highway 37 east for 91 km to the Kitwanga Junction, where the Yellowhead diverges east.

North of the Yellowhead's Kitwanga junction, Highway 37 travels 76 km to the community of Cranberry Junction, and then another 80 km north to the Meziadin Junction, where Highway 37A begins. Highway 37 travels north through the Skeena Mountain range for 333 km to the Continental Divide community of Dease Lake. Another 116 km north and Highway 37 reaches Jade City, where a junction to the former Asbestos-mining community of Cassiar is located. North of Jade City, Highway 37 travels another 120 km to its crossing of the 60th parallel into the Yukon Territory, terminating at a junction with the Alaska Highway near Upper Liard just 3 km later.


History

The Highway 37 of today is the result of highway extension projects begun during the 1960s and climaxing in 1972.

Originally, a roadway extended south from the Alaska Highway to serve the Cassiar mining district, eventually reaching Dease Lake and joining a road to Telegraph Creek. To the south, logging roads extended north almost as far as Meziadin Junction.

By 1968, the route of what is now 37A extended past Meziadin Junction north. By the middle of 1972, only a few miles remained to be built between Meziadin Junction and Iskut. Four bicyclists, whose journey from Alaska to Montana was chronicled in a May 1973 National Geographic article, braved the muddy gap.

Once this route was completed, travelers only had to contend with limited hours for using the logging roads south of Meziadin Junction, roads which were upgraded during the 1970s. The completion of a new bridge over the Skeena River gave Highway 37 a more direct connection to Highway 16.

British Columbia provincial highway 37A, the Stewart Highway, is a 65 km-long spur off of Highway 37 west to the border towns of Stewart and Hyder. Highway 37A was given this designation in 1984.

Flag of British Columbia Provincial Highways of British Columbia British Columbia highway marker
1 1A 2 3 3A 3B 4 4A 5 5A 6 7
7A 7B 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17
17A 18 19 19A 20 21 22 22A 23 24 26 27
28 29 31 31A 33 35 37 37A 39 41 43 49
52 77 91 91A 93 95 95A 97 97A 97B 97C 99
99A 101 395  
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