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 > Your search for posts made by 'Wadcutter' found 39 matches.

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RE: hauling trailer to Alaska

Great advice, just beginning planning hopefully for May-June 2021. Just reading your post is getting me excited. We are looking at a used 18 footer, unfortunately it is a single axle, but the price is right and the layout is good for us. My husband drives and I do all the planning so I really appreciate the advice. If you think of anything else let me know. Would you mind sharing your itinerary from Illinois to B.C. And where did you cross? Thanks again Just telling about it gets me excited to go again. Strange feeling but it's like Alaska is calling me to return. Had I visited when I was young before kids, grandkids, and other commitments I think I could have stayed. Every day was amazement and the next day was even better. I've only talked to 1 person who said it was not worth the trip. I ran into him a few years ago in a campground in LA. He said "Don't go. There's nothing there." I replied that's what I want to see, the nothing before someone messes it up. He said "You don't understand. There's nothing there. Just trees and animals." I got to give him that at least. He was right. Trees and animals. That's what I went to see. If you have a single axle don't sweat it. Lots of single axles on the road. Another couple tagged along and they had an 16 ft single axle. The only trouble they had was a water pump in the trailer. Got it fixed in Whitehorse and that's all the trouble they had. As another said make sure the wheel bearings are repacked and new tires. I had repacked my bearings but still lost one. Made it 5300 miles before the bearing went. It happens. Just part of the trip. We crossed into Alberta at Sweet Grass MT. Route basically was Banff, Jasper, Rt 40 (Big Horn Hwy) to Grand Prairie, Dawson Creek, side trip to Ft Liard NWT area, Whitehorse, Skagway, Haines, Tok, Fairbanks, sidetrip to Coldfoot, Denali, Palmer, Seward, Homer, Anchorage, Valdez, Tok, Chicken and Top of the World Highway, Dawson City, Whitehorse, Watson Lake, Rt 37 south to Steward/Hyder, Prince George, Kamloops, and re-entered the US at Oroville, WA. We saw most of the bears around Ft Nelson area and to Ft Liard.
Wadcutter 06/29/20 07:44pm RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: hauling trailer to Alaska

Thank you, lots of good info. Do most people who boondock run a generator? I saw a lot with generators. Ran them to keep the camper battery charged so had water pump and lights. I never saw anyone boondocking who ran it all the time when we were around. When boondocking people want to hear the sounds of nature.
Wadcutter 06/29/20 02:32pm RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: hauling trailer to Alaska

Someone asked me off list what tools they should take, other items, and the roads. Might be useful to others. Basic tool kit of the usual wrenches, pliers, adjustable wrenches, screwdrivers. Assorted lengths of rubber bunges. Several rachet straps. The most used things we packed were a piece of old carpeting about 6 ft by 3 ft to lay or kneel on, duct tape, and bailing wire. I took 2 extra unmounted tires for the trailer and 1 unmounted tire for the truck. Also had 1 each mounted tire for the trailer and truck. We never had any tire trouble but I would take them again. I can change a tire on a rim, some people don't know how. You might have to drive a ways but you can find someone who knows how to put a tire on a rim but they may not have an extra tire. The people we ran into who live there outside the cities are a resourceful bunch. They know how to get things done. And friendly and willing to help. I took an air compressor. Never needed it but if I had to change a tire out I would need the air compressor. I took 2 hydraulic bottle jacks. I only needed the one when we lost the bearing/axle on the trailer but 2 bottle jacks can be handy. In addition to the 5 gal of diesel fuel for the truck I also carried 5 gal of gas for the generator. I also carried 10 gal of potable water. I kept the trailer fresh water tank full whenever possible but there were times it was nice to have the extra 10 gal when dry camping. In addition to keeping your fuel tank full, keep your fresh water full and your waste water tanks empty whenever possible. Take an outdoor gas grill. The area is beautiful. You don't want to cook inside. You can't always depend on having a wood fire. 2019 was very dry and there were fire bans in effect. No campfires in a lot of places. I was surprised by the road conditions. All I've ever heard was how bad the roads are. The main roads are either blacktopped or hard pack gravel. We found the hard pack gravel to be smoother. Downside to the gravel is it's either dusty or it's sort of a mud. You will hit road construction/repair. No big deal. You're in Alaska. You're not in a hurry. Enjoy the scenery while waiting. Watch for frost heaves. Canada and Alaska does a pretty good job of marking them with a flag or an orange cone but they miss a few. As long as you're not going too fast the frost heaves are not a problem. They'll just give you a roller coaster ride or pitch you a bit. We did see an empty flatbed semi with all his wheels go off the ground when he hit a frost heave at probably more than the speed limit. The worst road we encountered was the Tok Cutoff between Glennallen and Tok. The surface condition was OK but it pitched, rolled and gave you a real ride. Nothing terrible or impassable. Been on worse in the lower 48.
Wadcutter 06/29/20 07:40am RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: hauling trailer to Alaska

Tuk is our next summers trip. Soup COOL!!! Not for us. 2022 would be the earliest.
Wadcutter 06/28/20 11:55am RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: hauling trailer to Alaska

I forgot to mention one thing. The only regret we had visiting AK was that we had not done it years before. We're already planning when we'll make our next trip. I have already started my list of places we're going. 1-McKenzie Highway in NWT. 2-Denali Highway. 3-Spend time in the Brooks Range. 4-Still considering to Inuvik and on into Tuk just to say we did it and saw it.
Wadcutter 06/28/20 09:57am RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: hauling trailer to Alaska

We spent the summer of 2019 in AK. It was not long enough. We drove 12,103 miles from central IL. We bought a used 26 ft trailer specifically to pull to AK. The shortest you can live in the better. We looked for a twin axle trailer and are glad that's what we got. We lost a bearing and damaged the axle north of Wasilla. Having 2 axles we were able to limp to a repair shop. A single axle we would have been sitting. The nearest tow service that could have towed us was in Anchorage about 75 miles away. We didn't find the prices to be all that much higher than in the lower 48, maybe a bit higher as around large cities in the lower. Our total cost came to about $1/mile. There are plenty of places to dry camp. And you'll want to do that just to experience it. Here are some suggestions for traveling: 1) Take your time. There's a lot to see. 2) Watch your speed. Disregard the speed limits. Keep it slow so you can watch for wildlife. You definitely don't want to see a moose up close. On our way back from the Arctic Circle a moose ran out of the brush and stopped close enough to the side of my truck I could have touched her. Surprised both of us. We saw several vehicles on the road that had hit moose and bear. 3) Take a generator. It will make dry camping a lot more enjoyable. 4) Carry an extra 5 gal of fuel. As another said, never miss a chance to fill up even if you just filled up a few miles ago. There are places it's a long ways between stations. Even if the map says there's a town ahead don't expect to find services there, or in some cases even find the town. 5) Visit Anchorage and Fairbanks but don't spend a lot of time in them. They're cities. Cities are not Alaska. Go to the U of AK Museum in Fairbanks and the museum in Anchorage. Good exhibits and well done. 6) Leave early, avoid the crowds. We left IL May 16. I wish we would have left 2 weeks earlier. We had some cool nights in Alberta and some places the lakes were still frozen over. But we avoided the crowds. The later in the summer you leave the more crowds you'll run in to. 7) When at Denali, if you take a tour bus to see The Mountain, get the earliest bus in the day you can. It's a long trip from where you catch the bus to the visitor's center for viewing. The later in the day you get to the visitor's center the less chance you have of being able to see Denali. Clouds roll in during the day. Only about 30% of the visitors get to see Denali due to cloud cover. You do not want to go all that way and not see Denali. 8) Keep a daily diary of everything you did each day. What you saw, what you spent, things that happened. You will see so much that by the time you get home you'll be on information overload. You won't remember some of the things that you thought you'd remember. 9) Take a camera for each person. Old school, but get pocket cameras. Something you'll always have with you. Then make sure no one goes anywhere without their camera, even if it is stepping out of the camper for a few minutes. And get an extra battery for every camera. Phone cameras are OK but you'll find a separate camera more useful in the end. And take pictures of everything and pictures everyday. We took over 4000 pictures and each one is a memory. 10) Spend the time and money on day tours/cruises/ferries out of Homer, Seward, Valdez, Skagway, Haines, etc. Particularly Haines to Juneau. The captain does more than just take you from Haines to Juneau. When whales and other wildlife are spotted he stops and gets closer for pictures. 11) Stop in visitor centers in each town. Each has an interesting story to tell no matter how small the town. 12) You'll no doubt go thru Watson Lake Yukon. Do a websearch on Sign Post Forest if you have not heard of it. Make your sign before leaving home. 13) Avoid Seward, AK over July 4. That's the Mt Marathon race. Town will be packed and there's not a lot of room there to begin with. 14) Most important - Get the latest edition of Milepost. It will be your Bible. Read it before you leave and then follow it mile for mile as you travel. 15) If you see a road - take it. There aren't a lot of roads in AK and everyone we took had a great view or story.
Wadcutter 06/28/20 08:07am RVing in Canada and Alaska
RE: Double Towing Length Laws

Wrong? I'll give you a "Maybe", but will balk on the "absolutely". Bet if you check, you will find the yellow means I should stop if I can do so safely. Like I said that green was stale, I was dropping speed and gears as I approached until I got to the point my trailer would clear the intersection before cross traffic got the green. If the cop wanted to write me up, my lawyer would of of argued in front of judge. At that time I was packing that weight that route 5-6 times a day. I had control, I did not let anybody in the distance I needed to stop. If it was not for the silly "no jake" law (that was overruled by state a few weeks later) I would of been there with cool brakes, and felt much better. Your attorney may argue it but it's not a winning argument. Sorry, what you think is the law isn't as you imagine. I'll venture an even bet my legal training and experience is more than what you just think you know about the law. If you went thru a red light because you couldn't stop then you weren't in control. Jake brake or not is totally immaterial. To me, the legal gross is the max weight the state puts the scale under me, and I drive away without giving money to state or lawyer. In that area, 22,400 per axle. 4 axle truck pulling a 2 axle trailer, with the right tires, do the arithmetic. If your total weight was only 13K then you were well within legal limit. Don't know what your plated weight was. That's just a tax for hauling that much weight. A 4 axle truck and only pulling a 2 axle trailer? That must be some truck with 4 axles and only a 2 axle trailer too. Sorry, there's no maybe you might have been. If some other bozo had gone thru the red like you say you did and hit you then you'd be then one whining the other driver should be hung at dawn. BTW, I taught traffic and truck law for a lot of years and enforced it. I was recognized by the IL Supreme Court as an expert witness in both. I know what is not a maybe. I didn't get my knowledge sitting around a campfire or listening to someone blow off on the internet about what they thought the law was about but clearly doesn't.
Wadcutter 06/25/20 04:40pm Towing
RE: Double Towing Length Laws

Often the right attitude can improve outcome; CB tells me LEO is at bottom of hill, so I use service instead of jake brake to hold speed down. Half mile later I'm slowed as I approach a stale light. Right at the wrong time, just as I step on the go, light turns yellow. With brakes already hot, can I get stopped, or just slowed enough to let car get in front of me? Pour power to it. HP comes up from behind to stop me. Now, I'm crowding my legal 130000 gross, and know a lot more about time/distance needed to stop than he does, but first thing I say to him is "Little late on that light huh?" as I hand out the folder with ins, reg and copy of DL. He took a few min to check all my lights, and let me go. Were you in the wrong? Absolutely. So many times I heard "It had just turned red and I couldn't stop." Yeah, tell that to the guy you just hit who had the green light. Had they been the one with the green light and hit they'd be screaming bloody murder wanting the other driver hauled to jail. It's the same as the guy who loses control on wet or icy roads. They think because the speed limit says 70 mph they can legally drive 70 mph in all weather and when they slide off the road they did nothing wrong. The same old story was "But was only going 55 and the speed limit is 70." Failure to maintain control. If you can't control your vehicle then you're placing all other drivers at risk. Don't know what your "legal 13000 gross" means unless you mean your licensed gross. If so that's just a licensing tax. A tax on what you say you're going to haul.
Wadcutter 06/25/20 09:30am Towing
RE: Double Towing Length Laws

I double tow a little over length and so far haven't been ticketed. When I'm double towing I'm usually not terribly far from home so I could drop the back trailer and come back for it in the event I get pulled over by an unreasonable law officer. Unreasonable law officer hmm. If you are legal, you are legal, if not you are not. LE's job is to enforce the law,not to adjust it as the urge hits him! When someone gets stopped they all think the cop is unreasonable. Cops are there to enforce the law against the other guy, not the ones who think they should be allowed to do whatever they want. Those were the ones who were always fun to write tickets to and let them tell it to the judge how 'unreasonable' they thought they were treated because they got caught violating the law. Pretty much explains how they were brought up by their mommy and her little precious.
Wadcutter 06/24/20 05:26pm Towing
RE: What's with Bio diesel?

Curious though why F350's are so hard to find? I've looked at countless places for these trucks and at best there are only a handful for sale. I can't stomach the sticker on a new one but even those seem pretty rare. I guess it's just supply and demand and people probably keep them forever. Mine isn't for sale. Once you find one you won't be selling yours either.
Wadcutter 06/12/20 09:22am Tow Vehicles
RE: What's with Bio diesel?

With the Ford 6.7L diesel you can run any diesel you're going to find at any station. Some states have mandated up to 20% bio-diesel so you'll find only some mix of bio-diesel. Other states you may be able to still find 100 diesel. For the 6.7L it doesn't matter. It will run on any mixture up to 20% bio. It's not likely you'll find a bio-diesel more than 20%. You won't have any trouble finding fuel.
Wadcutter 06/12/20 07:58am Tow Vehicles
RE: Why are people not opening new campgrounds/RV parks?

Ask yourself that question the next time you stay in a Walmart parking lot, truck stop or Cracker Barrel because you didn't want to pay to stay in a campground. If you don't support the campgrounds that are there then don't expect people to invest their money developing property that people don't help support.
Wadcutter 06/03/20 03:03pm RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: Truck GVWR wrong weight listed on registration

Can't answer for SC but here's for IL. It doesn't matter what the door sticker says when getting registration. The registration weight is a fee for the weight limit you intend to carry. If you never intend to carry a total weight (cargo and truck) over 8000 lbs then you register for 8000 lbs. If you think you might carry 12,000 lbs then you pay for 12,000 lb registration. If you never intend to carry 12,000 lbs then it's silly to pay the higher fee for a 12,000 registration when you could get by just paying for the 8000 lb fee. You can register you truck for whatever weight you want if you want to pay the state the registration fee. There's nothing preventing a person from registering a pickup for 80,000 lbs if you don't mind paying the state all the extra money. You would never carry 80,000 lbs in a 2 axle pickup but if want to pay the state the extra money they'll be happy to take your money. Registration is just the fee you pay for carrying the weight you intend to carry. What the door sticker says doesn't matter.
Wadcutter 06/03/20 03:00pm Tow Vehicles
RE: Rig for two couples?

Maybe we could get some more jokes about two couples struggling to get along in the same RV.... I don't think everyone quite gets the point yet. OP asked a legitimate question and 95% of the responses are just the same (lame) joke being churned over and over and over and over again. Come on people.... get some good material or give it a rest..... or, even better, help OP with the question he asked. From what I've read the OP has been getting some good advice with a bit of banter thrown it. Such is typical of internet forums, not just this forum or this thread. Most people with an IQ above room temperature could surmise from the comments that most people think it would be a tough situation for 2 couples for any length of time and travel. But maybe some people don't have the cognitive ability to figure that out from the comments. Obviously so. Some people need everything explained to them in detail, using small words and in black and white, so as not to confuse them or require any thinking. In case there is someone in the future reading the thread who is unable to formulate complex thought and needs things explained only in very analytical terms here's what the US Housing and Urban Development has to say about overcrowding in housing. They classify overcrowding when a person has less than 165 sq ft of living space. Does the HUD standard apply in RVing? Every individual has different requirements and situations they will tolerate. To make that even clearer, there is no definite answer to the OP's question. What they may feel comfortable with for another couple would be entirely unacceptable. Reading your comment what you think would work for you is an arrangement that would be totally unacceptable to me.
Wadcutter 05/23/20 09:54am Fifth-Wheels
RE: Rig for two couples?

No company makes an RV big enough for 2 couples.
Wadcutter 05/21/20 02:10pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: Double towing

Why does it have to be "a cop having a bad day" to enforce the law? Please explain to this retired police sergeant why I would be having a bad day for doing what I'm paid to do, for doing my job? That's because people don't want you to stop THEM. But they'll whine, cry, and pitch a fit if you don't stop THE OTHER GUY. They're the good, safe driver. It's THE OTHER GUY who is the bad driver and should be arrested. We've heard that story more than once. The worst towing I stopped was not a double tow but a quad tow. A class A pulling a box trailer. Connected to the rear of the box trailer was a Dodge Dakota pickup. Connected to the pickup was a boat. He started south of St Louis MO and had gotten 80 miles into IL before I stopped him. Talk about catching a line of grief from him. I was just picking on him. He had driven that far and hadn't caused any problems. No one else had stopped him. yada yada yada. The second worst was the 5er pulling a boat. Legal in IL as long as total length is 60 ft or less. But he had the slide out on the passenger side of the 5er. Driving down a 2 lane highway with a couple of feet of the slide hanging out into the oncoming traffic. Caught an earful from him too. He only had to go another 50 miles. Something was wrong with the slide and wouldn't go in so I should let him go, not his fault his slide won't work.
Wadcutter 05/20/20 08:28am Fifth-Wheels
RE: Double towing

Stopped? No. But I have stopped a few, ticketed them, and made them drop the 2nd trailer. Retired LEO. You wouldn't believe some of the combinations I've stopped. Asking "who has been stopped" doesn't tell anything. 99 others may have been but because the 1 hasn't doesn't tell anything. And just because a person has done it without getting stopped doesn't mean a thing. We had a saying in LE. "Did you ever go fishing? Did you catch them all?"
Wadcutter 05/20/20 07:23am Fifth-Wheels
RE: New Truck 4x4 or 4x2 ??

I've had both 4X2 and 4X4 trucks over the years. Most of the time I never needed 4X4. When I had 4X2 trucks there were a few times that I wish I had bought 4X4s. But when I had 4X4 trucks there never has been a time I wished I had bought 4X2.
Wadcutter 04/27/20 03:41pm Fifth-Wheels
RE: need a place to overnight in Chicago. UPDATED

Wadcutter brings up a good point about B trucks and larger. Not sure it applies to RV plates. How tall are you? https://www.cmap.illinois.gov/documents/10180/213749/Chicago_FreightSystemPlanningInfoMAP_20120229_version1-0r.pdf/80759ecf-74d7-446f-92dd-2f87dcf7df98 RV plates use to be exempt, treated like passenger car plates. Guys would buy a pickup, put a topper on it, call it an RV, and get RV plates. If they licensed it as a truck they were restricted but licensed as an RV they were allowed. It wasn't legal as just putting a topper on a pickup doesn't make it an RV but there were a number who tried it. Many of them got the ticket for improper registration so they didn't win.
Wadcutter 04/19/20 10:23am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
RE: need a place to overnight in Chicago. UPDATED

Before you make the trip in a motor home are you sure you will be allowed by the city of Chicago to take a motor home down the streets near Roosevelt U? There are a lot of streets that do not permit large vehicles such as RVs or even pickup trucks. RU is in the downtown area where traffic is controlled. They strictly enforce those prohibitions against larger vehicles and pickups. CPD won't hesitate to stop and write tickets and a ticket is not like a permit to continue. They'll get you out of the area. It would be pretty discouraging for you to drive from NE just to get there and find out CPD won't let you get close to RU. Just a suggestion that you might want to be positive you can do it before you try.
Wadcutter 04/19/20 07:58am RV Parks, Campgrounds and Attractions
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