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Old 03-11-2005, 09:51 AM   #15
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Moyock , North Carolina
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We all think about the what ifs and I'm no exception. I think that I am a better driver, but am I really? Don't tailgate and don't over drive for conditions. Mechanical things do break, but I've never seen any rig on the side of the road for days at a time. Someone will come by and help out. Go for it, don't be foolish but enjoy yourself.

Keep the shiny side up.
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Old 03-11-2005, 09:54 AM   #16
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Atlanta , Georgia
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If she hasn't pulled it yet then find a big parking lot make some poles with some foam pipe rap on it and teach her to park it and how to gage for its length. Let her run over the poles for a couple hours till she gets comfortable with the length and cut her loose.

I should let you ride with my Wife in our Sub. She tosses that thing around like a sports car. She loves when the engine makes that WOOOOOOOOO noise at full throttle on the 454

1959 22' Caravanner
1988 R20 454 Suburban.
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Old 03-11-2005, 10:39 AM   #17
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It has been years since I drove the Alaska Highway- back when the majority was still not hard-surfaced (in a three-door suburban towing a pop-up camper.) "It could be hours before you see the next vehicle" is not exactly a description of it. More like car, car, car TRUCK, car, TRUCK, car, TRUCK. Then, the challenges were the dust, thrown rocks, mud and heavy traffic. Now that almost the entire route is paved, only the traffic and terrain would concern me. The terrain is demanding: mountain grades, switchbacks, limited sight lines and frost-heaving on road surfaces. But those are all characteristics of highway driving in Alaska. Anyone who could drive the Parks or Glen highways in Alaska could handle the Canadian roads as well. Because of the truck traffic, and vacationers, mechanical repairs are available enroute, although not cheap- just like Alaska.

This is all well known to Alaskans and Northwest Canadians. I doubt I am telling Ron C anthing he doesn't know. After all he hints that his family has been over this road before, just not without him. There is even a mile by mile log of every item along the way which is probably the best selling book in every Alaska bookstore. It just ought to be put on record in this thread that a measure of the advice being offered here is without reference to having seen the ground to be covered.

As to taking a gun along- bad idea. Not much chance of crossing the border with it as the Canadian border guards are quite definite in interrogating and inspecting incoming Americans. If you conceal it and are caught in Canada with it you are in some serious trouble. This is also well-known to Alaska travellers.

I am not down on people offering advice- even wildly speculative advice-with appropriate disclaimers.
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Old 03-11-2005, 01:19 PM   #18
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What Janet said!

Whatever precautions you would take if you were making the trip alone or with your child are the same precautions your wife should take.
Doug & Jamie, AIR #650
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Old 03-11-2005, 01:20 PM   #19
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The title of your post says it all

Hi Ron!

The big question to me is how comfortable your wife is with the idea of travelling alone, and from your post, it sounds like she has the self-confidence, adventurous spirit, and driving abilities to make the trip quite well. Why spend all of your vacation time driving if you don't have to? Your wife and son will probably have a great time, and you can meet them in the lower 48 and spend your vacation time actually vacationing instead of driving.

My husband is driving from NH to MN (in a 2001 Suburban towing our 2005 Airstream) this summer by himself with all 6 of our children, ages 11 down to 1. He is a teacher and has the time off, and I am an RN and don't have that luxury. I am saving up all the vacation time I can so that I can take a road trip to AK with the family in a few summers. My girlfriends are amazed that my husband would attempt such a trip with all 6 kids by himself, but (and this is the important part!) he has NO qualms about it and is looking forward to the trip. They will be gone at least 3 weeks, and I know they are going to have a blast visiting his family in MN.

When my husband was a child, his mother and father used to drive their 10 kids in a station wagon and towing an airstream, all the way from MN to Mexico City. My father-in-law would then fly back to MN while his wife and 10 kids stayed in Mexico for a month or more (he ran his own business and didn't have that kind of time to spare), and he'd fly back down to help drive back at the end of the summer. It worked quite well for them, and my MIL never had problems staying down in Mexico by herself with the 10 kids.

I say, what's good for the goose, is good for the gander. If your wife wants to do it and has the skills and her wits about her, why not? And like the others have said, once she has completed this trip, BOTH of you will have confidence that she can Airstream anywhere on her own.
John and Lauren, 6 kids , and a 2005 Airstream 30' Safari Bunk
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Old 03-11-2005, 02:12 PM   #20
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Fairview , Montana
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Good Sam club has a group called "Stand by sams". They are all over, and listed in a directory as local contacts in case of trouble. It makes me feel better, even traveling with tools and skills. Seems like we could do something like that just for Airstreams, but maybe it would be redundant.

The Trumpowers
1979 SLY 31'
1979 GMC 4 door with s/c camper shell
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