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Liard Highway (Hwy #7)
Liard Highway (Hwy #7)
The Liard Highway is the southern entrance point into the Northwest Territory from the province of British Columbia, Canada. The highway explores the Liard Valley watershed. It measures 245 kilometres (158 miles) long and stretches from the BC / NWT Border in the south to the service community of Checkpoint in the north.
Checkpoint is situated at the junction of the Liard Highway and Highway #1 W (Mackenzie- Heritage Highway). Checkpoint is a rest stop for all 3 highways with services including gas, general store, propane, picnic tables and coffee.
The Liard Highway is a gravel highway, with sections which are well groomed and sections with some rough spots. Rough spots include pot holes and rib rattlers (a series of small bumps one after the other).
The highway becomes very muddy during times of rainfall with large puddles forming therefore hiding many of the bigger pot holes. Drive smart at all times with headlights and seatbelts on.
There are very few services on the Liard Highway. It is a wilderness route with wildlife sightings, beautiful scenery and plenty of forest.. but there are few services.
It is very wise to travel with a good spare tire, emergency supplies and a full tank of gas. Some travelers pack along extra gas on all long haul trips exploring any of the NWT highways.
Mile "0" on the Liard Highway is the BC/NWT Border. Travel north 31 kilometres (mile 20) from the border and there is an exit road (gravel) leading to services and the community of Fort Liard, Northwest Territory, Canada. The exit road is 6.5 kilometres (4 miles) long.
The Muskeg River and an interpretive lookout are located at kilometre 47 (mile 29). The Muskeg is a popular swimming destination for the locals in Fort Liard. Fishing the Muskeg for northern pike and pickerel is also a popular activity.
Further north on the Liard Highway is another lookout at kilometre 77 (mile 48). This lookout is a viewpoint overlooking the Liard Valley. It is the first real rest stop north of the border on the highway. There are interpretive signs with detailed information about the region. Good mountain views.
At kilometre 129 (mile 81) is the entrance to the winter road leading to the village of Nahanni Butte. During the winter months an ice road forms and road access is possible to Nahanni Butte from Liard Hwy. The road is 22 kilometres ( 14 miles) long. During the summer months access to Nahanni Butte is by boat, floatplane and charter plane only.
There are two bridges located at about the 146 kilometre point (mile 91) on the Liard Highway. Both bridges cross the Blackstone River. In between the two bridges is a day use picnic area with views. There are picnic tables and sometimes a supply of firewood.
The Blackstone Territorial Park is located at kilometre 151 (mile 94). It is the only territorial park on the highway. The park is a popular launching point for rafting, kayaking and canoeing. From the park the rivers provide access to the Nahanni National Park Reserve and from the shores of the river one can view the Nahanni Mountain Range.
From the park to Checkpoint on Hwy #1 the route passes by Lindberg Landing and Poplar River. The river fishing is for Arctic grayling and northern pike. Must have a NWT fishing licence.
| Liard Hwy