Texas to Alaska

Discussion in 'Destinations and RV Parks' started by 355spider, Jul 17, 2018.

  1. 355spider

    355spider
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    So we're taking our family of 4 kids across the country to Alaska. Not sure if we're totally crazy but we may be after it's all over. For those of you that have been any advice would be greatly appreciated. We're going grand canyon-- moab--grand teton--Yellowstone---Glacier national park---Banff--Lake Louise-- Jasper-- Dawson's Creek--muncho lake--liard hot springs---Watson lake--Whitehorse--Kline Np--ice fields--tok--fairbanks---Denali--anchorage--kenai-- skagway--probably back through Oregon.

    For those that have done it, what do you think? I think it will take us a couple months. Should we bring our Yamaha side by side. It's like a jeep. Plenty of places to use it in Alaska and Canada? [​IMG]

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  2. 355spider

    355spider
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    The other thing is our RV is a 43 ft toy hauler so it doesn't fit in a lot of places. Any tips would be helpful.

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  3. RickB

    RickB
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    Sounds like a blast and a great way to create lasting memories for the kids!

    You didn't give a time-frame (other than the length) for your trip. Knowing the timing may be helpful for getting better advice.

    I can only speak for the Oregon part of your journey, so here are my thoughts.

    If you are travelling this summer and plan on following the Oregon coast and camping in our beautiful Oregon State parks before Labor Day you will struggle to find a campsite. Reservations can be made 9 months in advance and sites that will accommodate a 43ft RV are reserved quite early.
    If you don't need hookups there are lots of OHV "staging areas" that allow overnight camping in the Oregon Dunes Recreation Area. This area is about 40 miles long and there are numerous designated areas for OHV's for you to use your toy or rent.

    If you'd like high desert off-roading, central and eastern Oregon have numerous designated locations. There are not many campgrounds with hookups on the east side but about half of it is BLM or National Forest with designated or dispersed camping available.

    Safe travels,
    RickB
     
  4. 355spider

    355spider
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    Cool. That helps a lot. Hadn't thought about Oregon yet. We're leaving Texas may 27.

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  5. John E. Baker III

    John E. Baker III
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    Nothing of firsthand experience, 355Spider. But if you navigate over to YouTube, LongLongHoneymoon and GoneWithTheWynns have some excellent vids on what to expect for an Alaska trip! I'd particularly point out LoLoHo's "When to go... When to LEAVE" post.

    You don't state what you're driving, but most travelers to the 49th are best served if they go with this in mind: Fuel... Fuel... FUEL!! Get it whenever you CAN! Especially diesel. You can also expect to pay $4+/gallon for gasoline & nearly $5/gallon for diesel in Canada! A 3-5 gallon jerry can in the basement could mean the difference between getting to a station... or taking the SxS into the nearest town. I'd even recommend making sure the SxS is full, too... For that reason! One other caveat, though: Try to [diesel] fuel in the larger towns and scope out the busiest station(s)... That way, you'll run less risk of the fuel being contaminated [sediments; water] than if you were out in the hinterlands.

    Meanwhile... Watch your tail swing, keep th' greasy side down and keep it 'tweeeeeeeeeeeen th' ditches, Y'all!! :cool:
     
  6. campingdog

    campingdog
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    The wife and I just got back from our trip to Alaska. My opinion, for what its worth, trying to visit all the lower 48 NPs and make a trip to Alaska would require at least four months to properly visit all the locations you have listed. Unless you have the time it would be better to make Alaska a separate stand alone trip. Our trip was 54 days, including 7 days in Idaho visiting in-laws. I would have liked the trip to be 30 days longer but due to commitments I was limited to 60 days. 11,601 miles and did not visit Banff or Jasper. We plan to go back again and visit them.
     
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  7. Fitzjohnfan

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    For the kids (and maybe you), may I suggest you look into getting them National Park Passport books:
    https://www.eparks.com/product/22515/Passport-To-Your-National-ParksĀ®/

    It makes the visit to each park even more interesting, the books have some basic info on each park, and you can make it a quest to get as many of the cancelation s and stamps as possible. It also creates a dated record of their travels.

    Chris g.
     
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  8. Zippi

    Zippi
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    We are planning a trip to Alaska too. Recommend the " Alaska Camping" book, has lots of good info. It recommends at least 50 days for just the Alaska trip and to make that trip between May and September.
     
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  9. campingdog

    campingdog
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    I agree with Zippi, I used the Alaska Camping book, along with the reviews on this site to plan which campgrounds I planned to stay at, but this book only covers from the start of the Alaska Highway. This book gives a good description of the campground including utilities, services and site length. The other book I used is a copy of Milepost, Alaska Travel Planner. This book covers all routes from the Canadian Border. Also includes the Ice Fields Parkway and all side trips off the Alaska Highway. MP book gives a lot of information including tourist attractions, and information about all stops along the highway. The maps in the Milepost book are extremely helpful. There is a map of each city that you pass through and listing of fuel stations, grocery stores, dump stations and campgrounds.
     
    #9 campingdog, Sep 26, 2018
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2018
  10. campingdog

    campingdog
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    I forgot to mention that both the Alaska planning books can be purchased from Amazon.
    Some of my additional recommendations.
    I agree with previous post, get fuel whenever its available. I towed a 30 ft. 5W with Ram diesel. I did not worry about looking for lowest price. I paid a high of $1.950/L ca. (~$5.39/gal US) at Liard Hot Springs Lodge. I didn't carry any extra fuel and only got in a jam one time. Did not buy fuel at Red Mountain and went on down road ~20 miles to CG at Sikanni River. Their fuel pump was broke. The map showed no fuel available for about 135 miles (although there actually was) so I unhooked at the CG and back tracked the 20 miles and filled up.
    I recommend that you have a pocket calculator for use at the fuel pumps. Most fuel pumps require that you select in Canadian dollars the amount that you want charged to your charge card at the pump.
    So if I need ~ 15 gallons the calculation is 15 gal. x ca.$/liter x 3.785 l/g = minimum amount (Canadian) to select.
    Also the Alaska highway mileposts miles have been replaced with kilometer markings. I will add additional posts on campgrounds and road conditions if any one interested.
     
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  11. campingdog

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    I was mistaken in previous post. The place I neglected to buy fuel was "Pink Mountain" not "Red Mountain".
    I was reviewing my trip log and noticed the mistake.
    I highly recommend a trip log where daily observations can be recorded such as road conditions, price of fuel and wildlife sighted.
    Recorded that we saw nine bears in one day between Watson Lake, YT and Liard Hot Springs. Eight black bears, one grizzly and one med sized black bear, that sadly, was deceased.
    Worst road conditions; probably the road to Haines. Rock and mud for 5 miles where they were widening the road along the Chilkat River. The escort truck being driven by a young girl ran off and left me, totally out of site and I was almost sideswiped by a huge rock truck. I had been going 40 mph plus trying to keep the escort truck in site. After that I slowed down to about 20 to 25 mph, turned on my hazard lights and became the escort for the 15 or more vehicles behind me. I was so mad I wanted to stop and find a supervisor and yell at them, but there was no place to safely stop and my wife didn't want me to get arrested. She will not drive the truck towing.
    Lots of other bad road conditions. Was watching for animals driving Glenn Highway (Glennallen to Tok) and didn't notice frost heaves until to late. Thought that I would loose the 5W. Looking in rearview mirror saw the leveling boards almost bounce out of the truck bed. They are good about warning signs for frost heaves in Canada, not so good in Alaska.
     

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