I have mentioned to sue before, how impressive her Dad's photos are, in sharpness and composition. Not only was he a fine photographer, but he knew and used high quality camera gear. While sue does adjust the colors, due to age of the photos, her Dad, Jack, did a first rate job in taking them. Plus he recorded the history of the area, where ever he was at that time. So glad he did
Propane is much more available in Canada, than in the US. Many/most Canadian gas stations will have a propane pump in with the gasoline/diesel pumps that are self serve in most cases At one time, years ago, it seemed that 1/3 to 1/2 of the motor homes I would see in Canada had a horizontal propane tank mounted on the rear bumper. Most were probably in the 25 to 40 gal size. Still lots of propane used for vehicle fuel in Canada. I grew up on a ranch in southern Oklahoma where we use propane for most of our farm vehicles. It is a good fuel if the price is right.
Danny, by the time you made your first driving trip to Alaska, I had already made 4 round trips, starting in 1962. I have had two flats, one I noticed as I pulled into the gas station in Watson Lake and they patched it for me. The other I did on a sharp rock on the Top of the World highway. In the 52 years I have been driving the highway, I have only broken my rig once. In 1969, I was pulling a popup tent trailer behind my Bronco and managed to break a spring shackle off, by hitting a pot hole, while driving too fast.
In the 13 RV round trips to/from Alaska I have never had the tire problems mentioned, plus I have made other car/truck trips, as well as several trips flying small aircraft, following the Alaska Hwy.
Not only does the Chruch book state it is prohibited to park along the highway right of way, but so does the Milipost guide. A couple of years back, a few of us forum members spent some time trying to research the matter with no success. It almost appears to be one of the myths that go along with the Alcan/Alaska Hwy. you know many of them, from the road will tear up your rig ( no, the rig driver will tear it up if they don't have good driving skills) to you need several spare tires, etc. Repeating and believing these myths, seems to make some first/second timers feel more macho and adventuresome .
Bottom line is, we couldn't find a law that even spoke to the subject, if not road signed, no one on the forum has ever reported being told to move by law enforcement. Just get well clear of the road and don't block someone's drive way.
Aux tanks raise a couple of interesting quandaries to consider. The $6.50 fuel is easy to avoid with a bit of planning. But at some point, you will need to refill the aux tank and OEM one. So when fill up time arrives, you may be paying $5 or $5.25 a gallon, depending where you are. I have considered adding an aux tank but have never been able to make the numbers work for me. Here in the Lower 48 I would like to have one just to be able to refuel once a day.
I have a 34 gallon OEM tank and have never had a problem finding fuel when I need it. Sometimes I will refuel even if only down 1/4 of a tank on the Alaska Hwy. anytime we stop to eat, I will usually refuel, regardless of fuel level.
We were on I 64 for awhile. Currently we are near Lexington Kentucky headed for Mammoth Cave NP. We took a swing up into southern Ohio as well, looking for fall color changes, with the best found in West Virginia.
Chris, the box I built for my 845 is roughly 5 ft wide, 4 ft tall an 1 1/2 ft thick, which gives me about 30 cubic ft of storage. Are you still working as a marine engineer for the Alaska Ferry system on their ships?
It was still raining at Seneca Rocks yesterday as we came through on Hwy 33. We camped in Luray, VA and quickly realized Skyline is one busy road on the weekend. Great during the week though. Lots of fog and rain for us as well.
Great photos, thanks for posting.
Chris, good to see you posting again. I have a Lance 845 on a long bed Chevy DRW crew cab and it works great for us. As you no doubt know, the CG to axle stays the sane on either a short bed or long using the 845. I built a plywood box to fit in the 18 inch space between the back of the truck and front of the TC. The extra storage room is great as the 845 has little or no outside storage. Because this 845 has a generator, I have zero outside storage where my previous 845 didn't have a generator so it had that space for storage.
We are currently in West Virginia camping, and the extra room for junk is great. Use it to store our lawn chairs, bagged, tool box, water hoses, 30 amp extension cords, water jugs, food items, fake fire logs, fire tools, etc.
You can go to my web site below, then click on Alaska trip June July of 2004, 2006, etc., then scroll down toward the bottom of the page, then click on web storage photos, to see what I built and use. If I do it over, I would extend it to come out over both side bed rails. I keep thinking about having one of the local boat shops in Stuart build me a fiberglass box that would look better. But a lot more dollars involved in that. LOL
We stayed at the Wytheville KOA a few nights back. Got a site in the new section of sites they are adding west of the office. Everything worked fine at our site. The WiFi was good till about 6 PM when the campground filled up, then became slow. But we had an excellent AA&T signal so ran off our iphone hotspot. The restrooms were spotless with lots of hot water. We will plan to stop here again in the future.
To tow or not is a very personal matter. I tend to think of a dividing length of about 30 ft as to how useful a toad will be or not. The 2 1/2 years we full timed, we pulled our toad on every move, it had to go. But most of my trips over the Alaska Hwy, have been in rigs shorter than 30 ft. A big part of the Alaska tour market is based upon cruise ships and tour buses. So all the major tourist attractions will have bus parking which will fit the largest RVs. Now you may find RV parking tight in front of Tee Jay's business, on the Kenai. LOL
Without a toad may require more planning for some. If you are planning to stay a week at some camp site, then take a weeks supple of what you need with you. While having a tow with you in Alaska can be convienent , getting it there, for me is not worth the trade. If you take two vehicles with you, you have doubled your chance of having vehicle problems.
Most RV travelers seem to move around a lot while in the north country. There are a few places to day trip out of but not many that are convienent IMHO. About the only places we spend a week or more camping in Alaska would be Fairbanks and Valdez, and some summer at the Tangle Lakes west of Paxson. A couple of times in Fairbanks I have rented a car, but generally we unhook the utilities and drive the RV (under 30 ft) if we want to go somewhere. Seldom do we find a problem with parking, where we want to go. If a business is going to cater to the tourist trade, they have to have parking for RVs and the ever popular tour buses. LOL
I figure on ten driving days from south Florida to Fairbanks. But seldom do we drive straight through, so it normally works out to be between two and three weeks. I have done Anchorage to Houston, Texas area in six days, traveling solo, but don't recommend that method. From Fairbanks to Bellingham WA, is about 50 hours driving time. Numerous times my BIL, my SIL and their driving age daughter, would leave Anderson, go to Fairbanks and to the Lower 48, leaving on a Friday after work, and arriving in Bellingham on Sunday evening. Not my style of travel but it worked for them. I am an early riser so will often have driven 250 miles by noon. So much depends on a persons age, their health, their enjoyment of driving, etc. I like to spend my time in Alaska and northern Canada, not taking anymore time than necessary along the way in the lower 48. We keep a list of places that look interesting that we wish to return to, on a different trip.
In the 52 years I have been driving to Alaska, I have done 13 round trips by RV, half a dozen or more by car or truck and about that many by flying airplanes up to Alaska following the Alaska Hwy, for the most part.
I find that at my age, 72, about a ten hour driving day is enough for me. In the lower 48, I can make about 600 miles a day and then drop down to roughly 400 a day in Canada. It varies by trip for us.
Morsnow, glad to see your comment about how roads are referred to in the north country. I lived in rural Alaska for 25+ years and was never aware that Alaska roads had highway numbers. LOL plus, until recently I wasn't aware that the Parks Hwy was part of the Interstate Hwy system, for funding. There are a few of the so called hidden Interstates in Alaska and Hawaii.
All roads were referred to by either the official name, such as the Richardson or by where the road headed.
The 13years we lived in Nenana, the Parks highway, that highway was referred to as the Anchorage Hwy or the Fairbanks Hwy depending on your direction of travel. In days gone by, direction on the Alaska Hwy/Alcan was always given as north or south. Most Travelers were headed north to Alaska or south to the lower 48. But I now notice more cheechocos giving directions using east and west at times. LOL
Most of my adult working life, I was employed by groups that ethnically considered themselves to be Alaska Native. While the terms Eskimo and Indians are the most commonly understood terms, by all cultural group, it normally isn't the terms used when they describe their ethnic heritage. There you will hear the terms such as Athabascan, Aetna, Yupic or Inupiac Spelling varies since these are English spelling for a spoken language.
So all this verbiage to say there are many words that mean the same thing, be it Alaska Hwy or Alcan, Indian or Athabascan. Of all the rights we have , not being offended, isn't covered in either the US or Canadian Constitutions. Yes I have read both, LOL soap box back in the closet time.
I have been driving the highway in question for 52 years, and I use the terms Alaska Hwy and Alcan interchangeably. Nothing worth getting ones panties in a bunch over, IMHO. As long as everyone involved in the conversation understands both terms refer to the same road, just not a problem for me.
Sue, I should have said Haines Junction or Burwash instead of 1202. Easy days drive even going slow. Lots of things in life get referred to by a name other than their official one, including body parts. LOL
Whether the frost heaves are marked or not, after awhile a person will get where they know they are on permafrost by the vegetation growing besides the road. About all you will find on frost as willows, stunted black spruce and tamarack trees. Just keep an eye out for those and you will know when you need to slow down. Remember, the road is not moving, just your vehicle so the damage you do to your rig will be tied to your speed. Slow down doesn't mean to drop down to the speed limit. You may need to drive at 5 or 10 mph at times. It is an easy day's drive from 1202 to the Alaska border, even going nice and slow, plus most of us are on vacation/holiday so no need to get in a hurry, IMHO.
One of our favorte places in this area, is Jetty Park, north of here, somewhat due east of Orlando. It is run by the Port of Canaveral (the county) has full hookups, well kept and just about centered on the east coast of Florida. Many day trips to do out of here, not too far north to St. Augustine, or go south down toward Sebastian Inlet or go west to the wonderful chaos known as Orlando with a million things to do and see. At the park itself, it is a short walk to the beach, or the fishing pier or next door is a county park where the viewing of the large ships using this port, pass by often. Since we live here in Stuart, we don't do much camping here in this area, but get south of here several times a yeer to the Keys or the Everglades. We also enjoy some of the campgrounds around Crystal River, such as Rock Crusher, Natures Resort in Homosassa and several others in that area. But we do most of our camping at Walt Disney's Fort Wilderness in Orlando, about 40 nights a year on the average. In my opinion, it is the best campground where we have ever stayed, anywhere. We never seem to get tired of being there.
Both systems work very well for most TCers. One difference with the two, is the angle of the front tie down and does either block your access to the fuel filler area. For years, I ran a mix of the two brands, one brand on the front and one on the rear. When I owned my Dodge, a 2002, it had a real chunk of metal on the back for a bumper and the button attachments worked fine. But when I changed to the 2011 Chevy, it like most of the current trucks built, has too much flex in the rear bumper for me to feel comfortable with using it as an attachment point.
Another system that some of the forum members like and use is the Stable lift system. It is a bit more expensive, but takes the place of the tie downs and the jacking system on the TC, plus makes them very stable when off the truck. www.stablelift.com
With either of the two most popular brands, many of the parts will go with you from truck to truck, with only having to buy the specific parts to fit your new truck. Not sure a person could ever wear out a set of either brand, in one lifetime. Bend them or break them perhaps, though. As my grandfather told me one time, some people can figure out how to break an anvil. LOL
I suspect there are as many SKPers, that don't have their mail forwarded, because they live at one of the SKP co-op campgrounds, which are not owned or operated by the people that own the Escapees Club. As Bryan mentioned you can lease or buy a site, which many do and their RV never moves off of it. This is their home, with a physical address, most have a US Post Office mail box, a local phone, etc. They consider themselves to be full timers because they live in an RV all the time. Not really much different than people living in a stick built home or apartment. They become as much a part of that community, as anyone else, they just happen to live in, what most of us refer to, as an RV.
We have a lot of this with other parks here in Florida that once the RV is set up, the RV ceases, being used in any way for recreation, just a living space, which really works well for many people, especially older couples. A number of the campgrounds here, run a 7 and 5 month plan, or some variation of that. You pay for 7 months and then you can be gone for the other 5 months, leaving your RV on the same site. Popular with some of the snowbirds, that then drive their car or fly back north for the summer.
As mentioned, the OPs question has so many variables, it is difficult, if not impossible to answer, because of so many different views on what full timing means to each of us. If someone asked, "how is the game of snooker played", there would be given some very clear answers that most other snooker players would agree with, using the same terms, criteria, etc.
bighatnohorse gave a definition that he thinks is the correct one, but it doesn't fit most of the people that I know, that consider themselves to be full timers. Nice thing is, people get to pick their own idea as to what being a full time RVers, does to be one. Just makes it more difficult to exchange ideas in written form, when there is little agreement as to what is even being discussed, IMHO.
There really are at least two distinct groups of full time RVers, IMHO. Those that travel, using their RVs as a home while they are involved in many activities, hiking, fishing, photography, working, enjoying different scenery, etc and the full timers that live in their RVs, while seldom, if ever moving them. This forum seems to have more members that fit into the travel group.
I have a 2.5KW propane Onan generator in my TC. It uses about 1.5 lbs of propane per hour of general use. So I can get about 3+ hours of run time per gallon of propane or approximately 15 hours per 20 pounder. I seldom use the generator so it tends to be a nonissue for us.
Last summer we were on the road for almost 3 months, staying in some campgrounds and some dry camping other times. Our 2 twenty pounders lasted the entire trip. We were mainly in the mountain west at high altitudes so didn't need the AC, or the furnace, did some cooking, ran the fridge on propane when off the grid and the water heater. But when we were plugged in to electricity, every thing worked on AC power.
Propane consumption that summer was very low, but cold weather camping or generator use will suck the fuel down quickly as mentioned above. On some of our trips to the north country, I planned to buy a 20 pound refill about every other week, as we were seldom staying in campgrounds. Most of us, I suspect, have auto switching propane regulators so when the first tank is empty and the system changes to the remaining full cylinder, it is time to stop somewhere and refill the empty tank. That way you don't run completely out of propane.