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Stage 510 – Bear Creek to Pine Lake

Down, lumpy flat, lumpy up then finally flat is the summary description of stage 510. The initial descent is a carryon from the flying finish to stage 509, and the long flat finish is courtesy of following the meandering route of the Dezadeash River from a safe distance in the flood plain to the north of the river. It’s actually a stage of three parts: south east to Haines Junction, then north to Pine Lake Territorial Park and finally north east past the lake itself before picking up the Dazadeash.

The rollout is a continuation of the finish of stage 509: the Alaska Highway piles on down the hillside, flying through Bear Creek after just two miles, before finally flattening out at six miles in sight of the first view of the Dezadeash River across the flood plain to the south (that’s on the right hand side of the road).

The road rises and descends gently over the next stretch before arriving at Haines Junction at nine miles. This is a significant milestone as it’s the meeting of Route 1 and Route 3. At the T junction, Route 1 heads north while Route 3 heads south, eventually ending up back out near the coast at Juneau. You don’t want to cross the mountains again and end up near the coast, so the route is left at the junction and keep following Route 1.

Now heading north, the highway passes by Haines Junction airport at eleven miles and it’s there that the road bends right at the south western end of Pine Lake at the Territorial Park, and with the lake just a short distance away on the left, Route 1 begins the journey north east that eventually leads to the finish. It’s a lumpy climb up to the lake from Haines Junction, but on reaching it, the road flattens out.

Beyond the lake, the route is calm, and apart from a gentle right hander at eighteen miles between two sections of long straight, there’s little to report. The road’s heading east/north east in a flood plain and as the meandering Dezadeash River starts to encroach from the south, the road dips briefly at twenty one miles, but really it’s nothing and the stage finishes soon after.

Distance: 22 miles / 35 kilometres

Ascent: 508 feet / 155 metres

RGT Magic Road: 09gsRYnYDLlL

Total distance: 21.44 mi
Max elevation: 2574 ft
Min elevation: 1920 ft
Total climbing: 508 ft
Total descent: -900 ft

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