The famous Signpost Forest originated in 1942 by a G.I. working on the highway who, when given the task of repainting the road’s directional sign, added the direction and mileage to his hometown of Danville, Illinois. Since then, more than 40,000 other signs have been added to the collection with town signs, license plates, posters, pie tins, gold-panning pans, mufflers, driftwood, even flywheels stating where the contributor is from and who he/she is.
You can put up your addition personally or take it inside to the adjacent Watson Lake Visitor Information Centre (corner of Alaska Hwy. and Robert Campbell Hwy., 867/536-7469, early May–late Sept. daily 10 a.m.–6 p.m., July–Aug. daily 8 a.m.–8 p.m.) and have them put it up for you.
In the center, you’ll get a history lesson on the Signpost Forest, as well as the engineering feat that is the Alaska Highway through photos, displays, dioramas, and a three-projector audiovisual presentation.
© Andrew Hempstead, from Moon Western Canada, 3rd Edition