The Steese Highway takes travelers approximately 160 miles from Fairbanks, Alaska to the small community of Circle, Alaska located on the banks of the famous Yukon River. The highway construction was completed in 1927 and named for U.S. Army General James G. Steese. The trip along the Steese Highway is filled with extraordinary scenery. Travelers will gaze upon the Chatanika River or take a dip in the Circle Hot Springs. During the summer, solstice, June 21st, passersby will marvel at the midnight sun in Eagle Summit. Users of the highway system will be rewarded with beautiful scenery and unimaginable wildlife photo opportunities. Birch Creek National Wild & Scenic River and White Mountains National Recreation Area are accessible from the highway. Approximately 60 miles of Steese Highway is paved and the balance of the roadway is solid, gravel bed road. Caution should be observed as a portion of the road is narrow and winding. The Bureau of Land Management maintains various hiking and canoeing trails along the highway.
The highway has a long time connection with the gold mining industry. Remnants of the long ago gold mining industry can be seen as one travels the historic Steese Highway. Visitors can tour the 250 foot long, five decks Gold Dredge Number 8 where nearly 8 million ounces of gold was produced. Gold Dredge Number 8 is a National Historical Site.