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We entered the Richardson Highway at the eastern terminus of the Denali Highway at Paxson (not that you'd notice Paxson as you passed through it if you blinked).  We headed southbound toward Valdez.  The road parallels the Alaskan Pipeline, and was actually built to facilitate the construction of the pipeline.

After reading the above on this web page, John O. Slater emailed me with:

"The Richardson Highway was built over the Old Valdez Trail which was built to access the gold fields around Fairbanks."

Okey, Dokey - thanks for the additional information, John!

The whole stretch is very wooded, with many lakes along the way.  We took a side trip for a few miles down Rt. 10 toward Chitina, as the first few miles of Rt. 10 have a beautiful view of the Wrangell Mountains in the Wrangell - St. Elias National Park (the largest National Park in the U.S.A.).

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