Sign Post Forest is an unusual attraction that stands at a point along the road toward Alaska, located near the town of Watson Lake of 1,700 inhabitants in the Yukon Territory of Canada. It is a “forest” full of signs of all kinds, of various shapes and sizes, and several nailed to vertical posts buried in the ground in a pine forest.
The tradition of putting plaques on that site began in 1942, by US Army soldier Carl K. Lindley. The town of Watson Lake did not exist yet, but there was a military base area and a nearby airport. Carl Lindley belonged to Company D, 34th Army of Engineers, an engineering division of the American Army, and was working on the construction of the road when he injured himself and stayed at the base recovering. During his stay, the commanding officer, ordered Carl to repair the boards that informed the various distances to the various points along the road, damaged by a bulldozer.
The Sign Post Forest of Watson Lake, Canada — At that time, it was common practice among United States Army engineers to put a pole with several signs pointing the way and giving mileage to neighboring cities and interesting points around the world. Carl missed his home and decided to add a sign pointing in the direction of his hometown, Danville, Illinois. Other people liked the idea and added signs pointing to several other places and so the plate forest was growing.
Over the years, a place where there was a single plaque turned into a 14,400-square-foot space filled with plaques, being added by people all over the world. There are thousands of signs, such as traffic signs, street signs, with city names, welcome signs, among others. And not only plates that people are adding to the collection, but also car caps, flags, urinal and other objects, and most with some written message. So far, the biggest plate is with information on a German road with the size of 6 x 10 meters, who and how they brought that huge plate nobody knows, but it must have taken a lot of work to be put in place. Note that there are over 100,000 signs in the Post Post Forest and that number grows every year.
The original Carl Lindley badge that started the tradition was lost, but in 1992, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Alaska Highway, Carl and his wives Elinor returned to Watson Lake and installed a replica of the plaque he had erected for half a century behind. Currently the replica of the Danville, Illinois license plate is displayed within the Park Information Center.
Image of the Alaska Expedition 2016 at Sign Post Forest. Couple and grandson who left Porto Alegre, in Rio Grande do Sul, and are traveling through the 3 Americas, totaling 60,000km | Photo Credit
Sources: Wikipedia / Signpostforest / Yukoninfo / Yukonhistoricplaces / Oddditycentral