The Yukon’s first highway, known originally as the “Overland Trail”, was constructed in 1902 by the White Pass and Yukon Route under contract with the Yukon Territorial Government. Over this winter trail hundreds of passengers traveled in reasonable comfort between Whitehorse and Dawson.
Besides passengers, tons of “Royal Mail” were carried by the stage line which was known as “The Royal Mail Service”. More than two hundred horses were employed during the winter months, and roadhouses that served hot meals and warm beds were established every twenty miles on the trail.
The White Pass withdrew from the service in 1921, handing it over to independent contractors who first used horses – later employing trucks and caterpillar tractors hauling freight and passenger sleighs.