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Abandoned Bases - YUKON
Royal Canadian Air Force Station Watson Lake:
Originally opened in the the 30s as a civilian airport, the Watson Lake Airport was taken over by the RCAF in 1941 as part of the Northwest Staging Route. An operations building was built and the runways were paved.
After Pearl Harbour the Watson Lake strip became critically important the U.S. Army Air Force established a large base there, considerably bigger than the Canadians, but they shut down and left after VJ day.
Watson Lake remained an RCAF aerodrome after WWII, but the primary user was Canadian Pacific Airlines. Seven PMQs were constructed for families living at the aerodrome, along with the wartime facilities already present: a curling rink, a theatre, a hobbyshop, messes, barracks and a large sports field.
The RCAF departed the airport in April 1957 and by 1961, the barracks and storage buildings had been removed. The sports fields were re-developed for housing.
The town of Watson Lake only appeared after the end of WWII, one of the few towns in Canada built because of the airport, instead of the other way round.
Royal Canadian Air Force Detachment Snag:
Opened January 1945.
Closed May 1956.
Royal Canadian Air Force Detachment Teslin:
Opened January 1945.
Closed May 1955.
Canadian Forces Station Whitehorse:
Originally opened by the Department of Transport, the airfield was taken over to the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1942 as part of the Northwest Staging Route.
Designated as RCAF Station Whitehorse, the station had detachments at Teslin, Aishihik, and Snag and in 1946, at Watson Lake.
After World War II, RCAF Station Whitehorse continued to function primarily as a refueling point on the Alaska route.
The Department of Transport took over the operation of the airport, but the RCAF remained. The station's function changed to primarily a Radio Unit, No. 5 Radio Unit. The station became part of the Canadian Forces Supplementary Radio System in 1966.
Also in 1966, the station was renamed Canadian Forces Station Whitehorse, but this would be short lived as CFS Whitehorse closed in 1968.