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Old 11-13-2012, 04:09 PM   #1
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2009 25' FB International
Corpus Christi , Texas
Join Date: Jul 2011
Posts: 14
Alaska Trip

My wife and I recently made a 6 week trip from south Texas to Montreal, Quebec, and came back through the New England states. We ended up driving 7760 miles. 40 miles from home in Corpus Christi, we had a blow out and had to change the tire on IH 37. Thank goodness, it was pretty easy to change on our 2009 International CCD. We had a great trip and the boss is already planning on a trek to Alaska next summer. We are planning on leaving in mid to late May and going through California and then north and return through Glacier NP, Yellowstone, and on south. Looks like it will be at least a 3 month trip. Any suggestions for Alaska would surely be appreciated.

Thanks for any advice!


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Old 11-13-2012, 05:30 PM   #2
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2005 39' Land Yacht 390 XL 396
Common Sense , Texas
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A couple of things....don't go that early, plan to get to the Yukon Territory not before July 1 or so. The roads up there have to be repaired every year because of the frost heaves, and that will give them some time to get them repaired.

Get some big flaps for the rear of your tow vehicle, like rock tamers, and then fashion a flap that goes between the rock tamer flaps to totally cover the rear of the tow vehicle, and keep them about 4" off the ground when loaded.

Do pad the front of your Airstream from under the window stone guard all the way to the bottom. We went in '08 and again in '10 and used Walmart sleeping bag pad material (1/2" closed foam rubber) to do this taped on with duct tape. We had no stone damage.

Make sure you have good tires, a good spare for both the tow and trailer, and sufficent tools to handle minor emergencies, and your tow vehicle is in good condition. Get a copy of "The Mile Post".

If you plan to take any firearms, make sure they are long guns, and do get on line and make out the paperwork for the Canadian will cost you $25 for a permit to transport, and having the paperwork done already will save you some time.

Have fun.

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Old 11-13-2012, 06:47 PM   #3
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1973 27' Overlander
East Tawas , Michigan
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Don't pass up a gas station. Lots of mom and pop places are closed or for sale. Don't be shocked at the gas prices in B.C and Yukon. Drive carefull and watch out for critters on the road, if you start to see brake lights get the camera out.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:27 PM   #4
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Yes, it's a good idea to carry extra fuel. Like baylito99 says, you may get to a "town" on the Alaska Hwy only to find that it actually only a gas station/restaurant/motel combination, and it is closed.
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Old 11-13-2012, 07:44 PM   #5
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Boca Raton , Florida
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A few years ago my daughter moved to Anchorage so I drove her there from our home in Florida. Don't think we would have made it without the book The Milepost. It's a mile-by-mile highway log with tons of useful information about road condtions, fishing, accommodations and camping. They have a if you want to order one. Also, my husband and I want to go back to Alaska in our Airstream so I ordered a copy of The Traveler's Guide to Alaskan Camping which also has tons of useful information with great reviews from campers who had used it on their travels.

It's a beautiful drive and can't wait to get back with our new Airstream!!

Happy trails!
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:29 PM   #6
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Dunwoody , Georgia
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The above replies give great advice. We moved from Texas to Anchorage, lived there for five years and moved back to lower 48. I've driven the highway three times and flown it in a small plane once. My favorite trip was one done in mid-April, the weather was just starting to turn, not much traffic yet, and frost heaves weren't an issue. saw lots of wild animals on that one. On the other two trips in summer its a virtual guarantee that you will crack a windshield from rocks. The milepost is a must.

Last bit of advice, we tried to take a short cut closer to the coast of B.C. along the Cassiar highway. The road atlas showed it to be paved. It was (for the first 100 miles) and then not for about 180. Very remote, almost ran out of fuel, only one tiny settlement halfway along before joining the Alcan highway again. I don't think I would do that one again! The only reason we didnt run out of gas was because I had an extra 20 gallons in cans. Gas prices are high in BC, esp the northern part and Yukon.

When you see the big cloud of dust approaching you from opposite direction, its a high speed logging truck throwing gravel everywhere, i use that as my cue to slow down and get on edge of ditch to protect windshields. Its only once or twice an hour, but be wary of them.

I would LOVE to drive it with an Airstream. I've been all over the world and think B.C. and Alaska are the best!
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Old 11-13-2012, 11:59 PM   #7
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Fairbanks , Alaska
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I've been living in Fairbanks almost 20 years and have driven the highway at all times of the year and temps from 90 deg to -50 (don't do that!) The highway is the worst condition right after breakup, late April to May. However if you wait until the highway is better you miss some of the best weather up here. Just slow down and enjoy the trip.
Be advised you could get snow if you come too early, this past spring got 6 inches of wet slippy stuff about the first of May around Pink Mountain and flurries later around Whitehorse. To give you an idea, BC requires snow rated tires from October 1 thru April 30 in this area.

Late May and June is the warmest and dryest time of the year in almost all of Alaska. Mid July and August is the rainiest. Mosquitos are generally worse in Mid June thru Mid July. Here in the interior we get our first frost around Aug. 20-25 and by labor day the colors have peaked.

You also need to consider what you want to do when you get here as that will have a bearing on your timing. This is especially true if you want to do some fishing.

As to gas on the highway my advice is to have a comfortable 300 mile range with your worst mileage and then you can buy fuel in the major towns. Dawson Creek, Fort Nelson, Watson Lake and Whitehorse - all approx. 300 miles apart. I have an auxilary tank in my pickup and can go around 900 miles towing. In general the further north you go the higher prices as you cross the border heading north. Recently (I've made the drive twice this year) it seems like Fort Nelson has been the highest price with Whitehorse much better, diesel was only about .03/liter more there than Dawson but Ft. N was over .15/liter more than Dawson. Just don't leave one of these town without being full on fuel. Also in much of this route in Canada gas is more expenive than diesel.

My last trip was just a couple weeks ago, from Bourne, TX where we picked up the EB to home. Had snow much of the way and it was 4x4 and 40 mph for a lot of it so don't wait this late!

"When you find yourself in a hole - quit digging!"

2012 1/2 Eddie Bauer, 2016 Ram Laramie 3500 SWB 4x4 6.7L Cummins 68RFE
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