Highway #11 - Silver Trail, Km. 102

Wind River Trail

Photo from Wind River Trail

The Wind River Trail, Proctor’s Trail and the Amerada Road all refer to the same route – the first Yukon temporary high-speed road. In the fall of 1959, Amerada Petroleum Corporation was looking for someone to haul oil well drilling equipment and supplies to their camps on Eagle Plains. Only thirty miles of the Dempster Highway was completed and the terrain was very rough. Up to this time, heavy freight destined for a remote location was hauled on bobsleighs by tracked vehicles. These “cat trains” travelled very slowly and the cook and drivers slept in a little frame “cook shack” that was part of the train.

Leo Proctor had gained plenty of experience moving equipment through the Yukon bush when he cut timbers for the Keno Hill Mine near Elsa. In 1959, Proctor was working for Arctic Oilfields Transport Ltd., a subsidiary of the White Pass & Yukon Route. He proposed a packed snow road that would be sturdy enough for the big White Pass trucks. Amerada Petroleum accepted his proposal when he promised that, after the road was in, they could use light trucks to supply their camps all winter.

The Wind River Trail was later upgraded to a summer road as far as McQuesten Lake and the road is in passable condition this far during fair weather.

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