Yellowknife Highway

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Highway 3 shield

Yellowknife Highway
Northwest Territories Highway 3
Route information
Length338.8 km (210.5 mi)
Major junctions
South end Highway 1 (Mackenzie Highway) near Fort Providence
North end Highway 4 (Ingraham Trail) at Yellowknife
Highway system
Northwest Territories highways
Highway 2Highway 4
Bridge over the Frank Channel near Behchoko
Buffalo along the Yellowknife Highway

Highway 3, known more commonly as the Yellowknife Highway, but also the Great Slave Highway, connects Yellowknife, Northwest Territories to Highway 1, from a junction 188 km (117 mi) north of the Alberta border. Built in 1960, the highway is now completely paved and realigned after years of work concluded in 2006.

The highway also connects with Behchoko (formerly Rae-Edzo) and Fort Providence. From Yellowknife, Highway 4 extends a further 70 km (43 mi) north, also providing access to the seasonal winter roads used by commercial trucking for mine resupply.

Crossing the Mackenzie River (just south of Fort Providence) between 1960 and November 2012 required a ferry service (May–January) and ice bridge (December to March). Transportation was interrupted in the spring for approximately five weeks when the ice bridge became unsafe but ice conditions prevented safe ferry operations. The vessel Merv Hardie served from 1968 to 2012.

The Deh Cho Bridge opened on November 30, 2012, and replaced the ferry/ice bridge.[1] Trucks pay tolls on northbound crossings, with pre-registered trucks using an electronic device being charged automatically. Private passenger vehicles do not pay a toll. Estimated costs have more than tripled since 2003.[2][3]

Major intersections[edit]

South Slave00.0 Highway 1 (Mackenzie Highway) – Enterprise, Hay River, Fort SimpsonSouthern terminus
Deh Cho Bridge crosses the Mackenzie River
Fort Providence3220Fort Providence Access Road
North SlaveBehchokǫ̀239149Formerly Edzo
244152Crosses Frank Channel
245152Rae Access Road
Yellowknife335208 Yellowknife Airport
336209 Highway 4 east (Ingraham Trail) – Dettah, Predude Lake
338210Old Ingraham Trail / 48 Street – City CentreNorthern terminus
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi


  1. ^ "Deh Cho Bridge to open Nov. 30". CBC News. November 6, 2012. Retrieved November 8, 2012.
  2. ^ CBC News: A closer look at Canada's infrastructure blockbusters. November 16, 2011.
  3. ^ A piece of history begins to melt
  4. ^ Google (October 26, 2018). "Highway 3 in the Northwest Territories" (Map). Google Maps. Google. Retrieved October 26, 2018.