You can drive all the way up and back, or put the car on the ferry one way. The Alaska Highway (nicknamed the Alcan) has been dramatically upgraded from the early days when you had to carry extra fuel and four spare tires, when you had to protect your headlights and windshield with chicken wire, and when facilities were spaced 250 miles apart.
Today, the entire road is paved, gas stations are about every 50 miles, and roadhouses and hotels are numerous. Still, this road is 1,442 miles through somewhat inhospitable wilderness. Frost heaves and potholes are not uncommon. Mechanics are few and far between, and parts are even scarcer. Gas prices are no laughing matter, especially on the Canadian side, where they’re typically almost double those in the Lower 48 states.
If you’re coming from anywhere east of Idaho or Alberta, you can hit Mile 0 of the Alaska Highway through Edmonton without having to backtrack east at all. But if you’re heading north from the West Coast, or through the Canadian Rockies, you’ll probably wind up in Prince George and have to head east a bit to Dawson Creek (the starting point).
You can also head west out of Prince George on the Yellowhead Highway and take the Cassiar Highway north from Meziadin Junction to just west of Watson Lake in Yukon Territory. This 458-mile paved road is scenically stunning, but services are a little less frequent than on the Alaska Highway.