Nahanni Range Road

Tungsten, Northwest Territories

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Improved gravel road from Campbell Highway to Hyland River valley; passable for 132 kilometers (82 miles). This road was built to provide access to the Cantung Mine, deep in the heart of the Mackenzie Mountains. The mine workings are located on the largest deposit of scheelite (a high-grade tungsten ore) in the Western Hemisphere. Tungsten is used to harden steel, and the resulting metal is used to manufacture military armaments. The mine closed in 1986 and is unlikely to reopen as long as the current climate of détente continues. The road is poorly maintained and should be driven only by the adventurous. It is suitable for passenger vehicles for the first 132 kilometers. The remaining 69 kilometers to the tungsten mine are obstructed by washouts, and you will need four-wheel drive to negotiate them. Gas and other services are not available at any point on this road. If you drive it, carry enough extra gas in jerry cans to make it either to Ross River or Watson Lake. This eTrail is a complete description of a scenic drive with a route map and information on the best travel seasons, interesting sites, recreation opportunities, camping locations, and much more.
Scenic Driving Alaska and the Yukon

DESCRIPTION FROM:

Scenic Driving Alaska and the Yukon

by Erik Molvar (Falcon Guides)

Improved gravel road from Campbell Highway to Hyland River valley; passable for 132 kilometers (82 miles). This road was built to provide access to the Cantung Mine, deep in the heart of the Mackenzie Mountains. The mine workings are located on the largest deposit of scheelite (a high-grade tungsten ore) in the Western Hemisphere. Tungsten is used to harden steel, and the resulting metal is used to manufacture military armaments. The mine closed in 1986 and is unlikely to reopen as long as the current climate of détente continues. The road is poorly maintained and should be driven only by the adventurous.

It is suitable for passenger vehicles for the first 132 kilometers. The remaining 69 kilometers to the tungsten mine are obstructed by washouts, and you will need four-wheel drive to negotiate them. Gas and other services are not available at any point on this road. If you drive it, carry enough extra gas in jerry cans to make it either to Ross River or Watson Lake. This eTrail is a complete description of a scenic drive with a route map and information on the best travel seasons, interesting sites, recreation opportunities, camping locations, and much more.

©  Erik Molvar/Falcon Guides. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Scenic Drives
Nearby City: Tungsten
Distance: 82
Season: Best late spring through fall
Local Contacts: Watson Lake Forest District
Driving Directions: Directions to Nahanni Range Road

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May 2018