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British Columbia's Yellowhead Highway, from Jasper to Prince Rupert & the Queen Charlotte Islands

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Papua New Guinea, the eastern half of the second-largest island in the world, includes a cluster of islands off its northeast coast _ New Britain, New Ireland, Bougainville, Manus, the Trobriands, and scores of smaller islands.ÊThe other half of the island, the western part _ Indonesian Irian Jaya _ is another story and, other than brief remarks about it, this chapter is confined to Papua New Guinea. However, when you put both halves of the island together, notice how in profile it resembles a huge bird taking off. The head of the bird, a place the Dutch called Vogelskopf (bird's head) is on the Indonesian side. The other end, given no anatomical name by the Australians, is in newly independent Papua New Guinea. We once fell in with such a group, and in time they asked why we were in Papua New Guinea. I explained that World War II nostalgia drew at me a little, but mostly we wanted to see the Sepik River, the Trobriands, the Highlands, maybe the Kokoda Trail. They approved with noisy enthusiasm, but one of them added, "You're just scratching the surface of this country, mate. There are other rivers to be seen, trails to be walked, mountains climbed, some snow-clad, and with valleys so remote that Stone-Age people live in them. There are jungles with birds of paradise in them, cassowaries, wallabies, little pigmy blokes too. And don't forget the hundreds of islands in the Bismarck Sea off the North Coast that are like little jewels. Remember too that over 700 linguistic groups and cultures share this country." Two subsequent trips convinced us that New Guinea has everything an adventurer or escapist from the usual could want. But, on balance, Papua New Guinea has far better amenities and transportation facilities than Irian Jaya, the western half. Tranquil lagoons in shades of emerald and turquoise, palms swaying gently in the tradewinds, powdery white beaches framed by soaring mountains, waters teeming with brilliantly colored fish - this is what you will find here.

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British Columbia's Yellowhead Highway, from Jasper to Prince George, the Hazeltons, Prince Rupert and the Queen Charlotte Islands

 

 

Ed & Lynn Readicker-Henderson

 

 

 

HUNTER PUBLISHING, INC,

www.hunterpublishing.com

 

 

 

 

 

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form, or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission of the publisher.

This guide focuses on recreational activities. As all such activities contain elements of risk, the publisher, author, affiliated individuals and companies disclaim responsibility for any injury, harm, or illness that may occur to anyone through, or by use of, the information in this book. Every effort was made to insure the accuracy of information in this book, but the publisher and author do not assume, and hereby disclaim, liability for any loss or damage caused by errors, omissions, misleading information or potential travel problems caused by this guide, even if such errors or omissions result from negligence, accident or any other cause.

 

Northern British Columbia

ePub

British Columbia has two great highways headed north, the Cassiar Highway and the Alaska Highway. They both start farther north than most people bother to go. That makes it good for you: you get more scenery, more fun and fewer people.

The Alaska Highway gets all the publicity, but there's also the incredibly beautiful, remote Stewart-Cassiar (usually just called the Cassiar), which picks up from the Yellowhead Highway just south of Kitwanga and comes out 21 miles/34 km west of Watson Lake, in the Yukon. The Cassiar is faster, more consistently scenic (although there is nothing to match the grandeur of Stone Mountain or the Kluane Range), and considerably shorter. It's also a lot rougher, with almost no services along the way, and it's frequently full of trucks going too fast for conditions, taking a shortcut to Alaska. There are even a few places where the road doubles as an air-strip.

The other significant route in Northern BC, the Yellowhead Highway, takes you west to Prince Rupert and the coast, where you can catch a ferry over to the Queen Charlotte Islands.

 

Queen Charlotte Islands

ePub

British Columbia has two great highways headed north, the Cassiar Highway and the Alaska Highway. They both start farther north than most people bother to go. That makes it good for you: you get more scenery, more fun and fewer people.

The Alaska Highway gets all the publicity, but there's also the incredibly beautiful, remote Stewart-Cassiar (usually just called the Cassiar), which picks up from the Yellowhead Highway just south of Kitwanga and comes out 21 miles/34 km west of Watson Lake, in the Yukon. The Cassiar is faster, more consistently scenic (although there is nothing to match the grandeur of Stone Mountain or the Kluane Range), and considerably shorter. It's also a lot rougher, with almost no services along the way, and it's frequently full of trucks going too fast for conditions, taking a shortcut to Alaska. There are even a few places where the road doubles as an air-strip.

The other significant route in Northern BC, the Yellowhead Highway, takes you west to Prince Rupert and the coast, where you can catch a ferry over to the Queen Charlotte Islands.

 

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