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AEV Trucks on the Ice Road

Most people would go out of their way to avoid slick ice roads, but we did just the opposite.

Fred WilliamsPhotographer, Writer

Most people would go out of their way to avoid slick ice roads, but we did just the opposite. With the guys from American Expedition Vehicles we headed to northern Canada to drive one of the few remaining roads made completely of ice. There is a small town in the tippy top of Canada known as Tuktoyaktuk (commonly called “Tuk” by locals), but there are only a few ways to get there: by plane, by boat in the summer, and by frozen river or ice road in the winter. We were told that 2017 will be the last year of the ice road, so what better time than now to go check it out? You may assume that the road will be there no matter what as long as the river freezes, but there is actually a lot of money and labor applied to making the road drivable; snow has to be cleared, the ice has to be chipped for traction, and it is not just a short jaunt. This road goes over more than a hundred miles of frozen river. It takes you from the larger (but still small) northern Canadian town of Inuvik up to Tuk, but only in the winter. And now a dirt road is being built that should open in 2017 or 2018, so the ice road only has one more year of use. If you want to go drive an ice road, you better do it soon.