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 > Alaska - 2023

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Salty Dog

Upstate NY

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Posted: 08/24/22 07:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sorry for the long post! I did a search on this forum and others prior to asking...

My wife and I are recently retired and are planning on making the trip to Alaska next summer. We have a multitude of questions for those you have also made the trip.

Our trip is planned for about 4 months and includes Mt Rushmore , Yellowstone, and the Grand Tetons on our way (not all encompassing, taking about a month to travel west and visit these areas), the Canadian Rockies (Banff and the Icefield Parkway) to the Cassiar Highway and then to the Al-Can - about 4 weeks to reach Alaska, Glennallen - 4 days, Palmer - about 3 days, Seward - 6 days, Homer - 5 days, Anchorage - 10 days, Denali - 5 days, Fairbanks - 10 days, and then begin the trip home from Alaska at the middle of September. The start of the return trip is governed by the campground closings in Fairbanks.

We have the Milepost and it has been a great source of information!

We are still in vacation mode where we try to cram a lot into a little space. Any tips on addressing this?

I am trying to keep the drive times to about 6 hours or less using RV Life Trip Wizard. Only a couple are a touch longer and a most are shorter.

Is the weather typically a washout when it rains? Cloud cover - thinking photos of the landscape, tours, etc.

We will be making reservations and plan on staying in campgrounds rather than boondocking. If our plans get altered, are boondocking opportunities available if the campgrounds cannot accommodate the change?

There is lots to see and do and this will be a trip of a lifetime for us - we don't want to waste the opportunity with over staying or under staying.

I appreciate your thoughts and taking the time!
Mike


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Veebyes

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Posted: 08/24/22 08:49am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Coming from the east, to much in to little time.

Cut out Yellowstone & the other lower 48 stuff for another time.

We have done the North 4 times out of MD Eastern Shore. Each time longer than the trip before. Each time departing MD 3rd or 4th week April. Each time returned MD end of July to mid August. Each time returned wondering where the time went?

Generally no reservations unless for an event or holiday weekend. Never reserved more than a week out.

Thinking of doing it again next year. Something keeps drawing us back to the North.


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Veebyes

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Posted: 08/24/22 08:50am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

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enblethen

Moses Lake, WA

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Posted: 08/24/22 09:11am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

First item, don't call it the AL-Can. It is the Alaska Highway.
You will be pushing a lot even for four months. As earlier post suggests delete lower 48.
Only place you may need reservations is Denali area.
There are many campgrounds that are open later in year plus lots of places to spend the night.


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Rocky2

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Posted: 08/24/22 09:24am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I echo the suggestion that you not try to make loads of reservations. In all my trips north, I have never stayed 10 days in either Fairbanks or Anchorage. Allowing flexibility for weather, or fires, or special events is important. This year has had many rain days this summer. Some years has been extra smokey. My last trip up, the smoke was so bad I was going to divert to Dawson City but the road was closed due to a fire..so I backtracked to British Columbia and Alberta which are both wonderful in their own right.





routeforty

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Posted: 08/24/22 09:41am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Is Canada open for tourism yet? We had planned to do the Maritimes a couple years ago before the border closed. That sounds like one awesome trip!!!


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SideHillSoup

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Posted: 08/24/22 10:03am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I agree, if you plan on being someplace on a Long Weekend either have a reservation or stay where you are until the long weekend is over especially in the southern 1/2 of BC. ( Prince George south)
Since Covid, Banff / LL and Jasper campgrounds have been packed.
If you plan to stay ( camp) in Banff / Lake Louise / Jasper reservations are HIGHLY recommended especially if you plan on being there June through September.. Those three areas have four National Parks, Banff, Yoho, Kootenay and Jasper National Parks, it is the #1 tourist destination in Canada. Reservations for the National Parks of Canada open in early January and the fill up fast, so I recommend between now and the first the Banff through Jasper campgrounds have your days in those parks figured out and book as soon as the reservation windows opens.
NOTE; there are no private campgrounds in any Canadain NP.
Parks Canada
After that I wouldn’t make any reservations except in Dawson City Yukon as there is one campground ( Gold Rush City) which is downtown Dawson City and you can walk everywhere in town from there. Caravans and large groups of RV’s can show up and book the campground fast.
Another thing to do is buy the Mile Post travel book, it’s a must have for your first adventure north.
Always fill the top 1/2 of your fuel tank, give you a chance to streak ask the locals about interesting sights near by, and a chance to walk around your rig checking tires and bearing temps…etc…
Go north (up)to Alaska from Dawson Creek BC as MilePost is basically laid out that way and my wife found it very interesting that places to pull off the Hwy were listed as well as sights to look for that were coming up.
Also the Fish should be running at Fish Creek at Hyder Alaska (BC Hwy 37) Cassiar Hwy, meaning you can go into Stewart BC / Hyder Alaska and view the bears feeding on the Salmon run which is usually August / September. My wife was raised in Stewart and said it’s a must see when in the area if your there at the right time of year.
Also you can drive up past Hyder, back into Canada ( BC and see the Salmon Glacier.
Note: there is only 1 boarder station and that is a Canadian Boarder Crossing coming back into Canada from Hyder, there is no USA boarder building / people period.

I agree tour the Lower 48 states on another trip and concentrate on Western Canada and Alaska on this trip.

Note: most Canadians don’t refer to Hwys by catchy nicknames, that’s a tourist thing, most of us go by the Hwy numbers. However those names like the Alaska Hwy ( not the Al-Can) and the Cassiar Hwy are becoming more common.
Have fun on your adventure
Soup.

Pictures are from Banff & Kootenay NP a few winters ago ( spring)

[image]

[image]

[image]


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SideHillSoup

South Eastern British Columbia

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Posted: 08/24/22 10:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

routeforty wrote:

Is Canada open for tourism yet? We had planned to do the Maritimes a couple years ago before the border closed. That sounds like one awesome trip!!!


Yes it is, however there are a few things the Canadian Gov’t asks for so please check the Gov’t of Canada official websites for what is required to enter Canada, at this time.

enblethen

Moses Lake, WA

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Posted: 08/24/22 10:12am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Need to go to "acceesCan.ca".
Need to follow instructions to make it easier even though there is no guarantee on entrance to Canada. Must be done within 72 hours of border crossing.

Trackrig

Spent the summer in Conconuly, Wa, MH now in Vanco

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Posted: 08/24/22 10:30am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

enblethen wrote:

First item, don't call it the AL-Can. It is the Alaska Highway.
You will be pushing a lot even for four months. As earlier post suggests delete lower 48.
Only place you may need reservations is Denali area.
There are many campgrounds that are open later in year plus lots of places to spend the night.


It's the Alcan to those of use who have been in Alaska for a long time.

Bill


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