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-   -   Alaska Summer 2022 (https://www.irv2.com/forums/f295/alaska-summer-2022-a-551743.html)

VC63 08-29-2021 11:39 AM

Alaska Summer 2022
 
HI Everybody,

I am starting research for next summers trip to Alaska. I am thinking this trip will be through June, July and August. Reentering the U.S. around the first of September. We will be leaving north Florida about June 7th. We will be in our 35' Tiffin class A gasser pulling a toad. I am planning on getting to the boarder around June 19-20. We have traveled most of the U.S. area before so I expect only one or two tourist stops between Florida and the Canadian boarder. And making a couple of rest days too.

I think I will be entering Canada through Montana. I have read to enter around Glacier National park. That is my first question. Where near Glacier?

Once we enter Canada we want to stop at Banff and Jasper. I have been told these are must sees. After that we are open to what ever is on the way. I am a little concern about the route. I know there are not many choices but I would like to here what others have done. I think we will take the AL- Can up and maybe the Cassiar back down into Seattle.

I am reading about all the things to do along the way through Canada and in Alaska. What are the most do things we should see.

My other big question is camp grounds. I have also read there is a lot of free places to boondock. I have my on board generator and am planning on a suitcase solar to help. I will probably upgrade my batteries to 300 AMP HR.

We are not big or experienced boon dockers only overnighting in Walmart or similar places. We will want to stay in campgrounds with at least power part of the time. I assume water and dump stations are not hard to find. We stayed in a few campground this summer in Michigan U.P. that only had power and we did fine for 3-4 days. I am thinking with the Genny and a little solar we could manage a few day without power too.

I have a ton of other things to ask but I hope this starts a new conversation for those who are also planning for next summer and help from those who have already done the last frontier.

Of course all of this is dependent on Canada being open next summer. Hopefully this darn COVID will be MUCH better by then.

Thanks to all I look forward to hearing what people have to say

Tightwadted 08-29-2021 02:12 PM

There are way more experienced Alaska travelers than I am; but here a few observations from our 2019 trip: we entered Canada at Sweetgrass MT, easy, If you want to stay in Banff or Jasper you must reserve a campground the day they open reservations. we needed 3 for our group and it was touch and go to get them. research how they do reservations ahead of time. there are a lot of places to boondock/dry camp once you get on the Alcan. get the Milepost and Mike and Terry Church's book-Alaska camping. lots of info. Also, if you want to do things in Alaska get the Tour Saver coupon book, will pay for itself with just one cruise, fishing trip, etc. We are thinking of making return trip in 22 also. Sure others will chime in.

twogypsies 08-29-2021 03:06 PM

Going up on the Alcan and returning on the Cassier is a good plan. Hopefully, you'll stop at Hyder to view the bears fishing for salmon on your return.

As noted, your only references needed are the Milepost - good for history and maps as you travel. We both took turns driving so the other could enjoy the beauty. We read out loud from the Milepost as we traveled. The other publication - Mike & Terry Church's book.. Alaskan Camping ... will be your reference for camping and good boondocking spots. It also covers some of the U.S. border entrance areas and Canada and the Yukon. They lived in Fairbanks and traveled south constantly so they know the spots. However....and especially since Covid .... many places may be closed because of lack of travelers. It's a rough life up there. This also includes fuel stations so always drive on the top half of your tank. Don't wait for a better price.

Boondocking - if you have a generator along you basically, could boondock every single day of your trip. We didn't have electric the whole trip. Definitely stop at beautiful spots along your travels. Many will be on lakes or rivers. You shouldn't have issues filling with water or using the dump stations as you travel. The references will give you the places to do so.

The TourSaver coupon book is worthwhile if it will still be in effect. Covid may have changed a lot of things. We took a 2 for 1 glacier trip out of Valdez and also Seward. We also used it for the boat trip out of Fairbanks. So it really paid off.

You can't get lost once you're on the Alcan or Cassier. The roads are good for the most part but like in the lower 48 you'll encounter construction areas and a long unpaved portion just before Tok, Alaska. Drive slow and if possible, pull way over to the right when an oncoming truck comes from the opposite direction at a higher speed. That's when rocks can be thrown.

We didn't have any dings on our RV or Jeep & I think a good part of our luck was driving slow.

We got all new tires on the RV just before the trip as they were getting close to needing them anyway.

It really is an easy trip but just a long one. Don't think of the mileage as a whole.... break it down into small chunks.

The only reservations we made for the whole summer were the July 4 weekend and 5 nights in Denali's Teklanika campground. Those we only made a couple weeks prior while traveling so we could better judge when we'd be there. As it turned out we were early for our Denali reservation so on a whim we boondocked nearby at a lovely spot and drove into Denali early morning. We easily secured an additional 5 nights in Denali's Riley Creek campground. Ten nights and we saw 'THE' mountain 7 days in full glory. Some travelers never see it. Our days was filled... so much to see in the park. From Teklanika we took the bus siteseeing once or twice a day. We could take it as often as we wanted as it was included in the camp fee. We also saw every one of the big animals in the park... some more than once.

Also, the Yukon government campgrounds are very, very nice and usually free firewood. We also did Canada's Provincial campgrounds. Boondocking was done most.

Have a good trip!

JHinman 08-29-2021 03:20 PM

You can drop down off the Alcan into towns like Skagway and Haines, too. There is some history, and some things to see.

Haines has a tremendous eagle population in the winter. In the summer there are eagles in the area, but nothing like in the winter.

RPrince 09-03-2021 07:30 PM

We went to Alaska in 2018 and really enjoyed it. Left Central Texas mid May and returned in mid September. The one thing that really helped was reading everything we could, read all of the Alaska threads on IRV2, and watch YouTube videos of others to be sure and make note of everything that we wanted to see before we got there so we didn't miss anything.

My wife entered our route in Trip Wizard and we put tentative dates on when we would get there and how long we would stay for each place with a tentative mileage max each day. As it turned out, some locations we found to stay (boondock) we liked so much that we stayed longer than planned. Some days we drove 250 miles and others we only moved about 50 miles per day. It rained for a few days close to Tok so we just waited it out. By having an overall time plan, we adjusted it so we were somewhat on time overall.
We still took side trips that we hadn't planed on, like Haines for a few days, and didn't feel rushed. We didn't have to return until October so we had some flexibility with our schedule.

The only reservations we made were for Glacier NP during Memorial Day weekend and Denali NP for the 4th of July weekend. We experienced a mech breakdown about 30 miles from Glacier and had to turn back to Twin Falls for repairs, missing our reservation window for Glacier NP.
Got one windshield ding in Canada but found a repair guy at the old Fred Meyers store parking lot in Whitehorse that came to our campsite about 15 miles away to fix it and one on our Jeep for $50. Can't beat that!

The only thing(s) that we didn't get to see like we wanted to was the West coast of Canada along the Cassier Hwy due to numerous wildfires. Once we started heading South from our sidetrip to Haines, the smoke was soo thick that we pretty much drove straight through with 600 mile days to get out of the smoke. I think we missed alot of pretty country along that route due to the fires.
It was an expensive trip but we're so glad that we went!

Randy

Spock 09-05-2021 08:36 AM

We went in 17 and had a great time. The only reservations we made ahead of time was Seward AK. They have a city campground in Seward that is awesome. Coming back I took hgy 27 I think, no cell phone service for 2 days. Stopped at one place and started to fill up the truck, looked at the pump it was $1.99 a liter, I just filled up the tank and paid for it. I understand that you have to be fully vaccinated to get into Canada now, if that’s true I won’t be going back. The people along the highway were really nice, the rude people we seemed to left at the border. DON’T TAKE A GUN besides I never felt the need for one. If you can’t do without a gun ship the gun to Alaska

Boomper 09-07-2021 09:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Spock (Post 5901875)
We went in 17 and had a great time. The only reservations we made ahead of time was Seward AK. They have a city campground in Seward that is awesome. Coming back I took hgy 27 I think, no cell phone service for 2 days. Stopped at one place and started to fill up the truck, looked at the pump it was $1.99 a liter, I just filled up the tank and paid for it. I understand that you have to be fully vaccinated to get into Canada now, if thatís true I wonít be going back. The people along the highway were really nice, the rude people we seemed to left at the border. DONíT TAKE A GUN besides I never felt the need for one. If you canít do without a gun ship the gun to Alaska

We opted to not take a firearm when we went up in 2019. Handguns are not welcome anyway but long guns, with the proper certification, are OK. A lot of self-protection issues revolve around common sense, or they should.



We were about 100 miles west of Liard Hot Springs when the two Canadian teenagers when nuts and killed two travelers just south of the hot springs and then killed another traveller the next day, setting fires to the cars of the murdered folks along the way.

I felt the need to arm myself during this incident but could not. YMMV

Nrbsr 09-10-2021 09:48 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Boomper (Post 5904832)
We opted to not take a firearm when we went up in 2019. Handguns are not welcome anyway but long guns, with the proper certification, are OK. A lot of self-protection issues revolve around common sense, or they should.



We were about 100 miles west of Liard Hot Springs when the two Canadian teenagers when nuts and killed two travelers just south of the hot springs and then killed another traveller the next day, setting fires to the cars of the murdered folks along the way.

I felt the need to arm myself during this incident but could not. YMMV

We were at the Jade store on the Cassier highway for their free coffee. There are pictures of those two guys there the next day when they murdered the other guy. The wife was ready to leave me and fly home when she found out. They were still loose at that time & we had done some pretty desolate boondocking on the Cassier.

GonetoRaces 09-10-2021 10:03 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nrbsr (Post 5909354)
We were at the Jade store on the Cassier highway for their free coffee. There are pictures of those two guys there the next day when they murdered the other guy. The wife was ready to leave me and fly home when she found out. They were still loose at that time & we had done some pretty desolate boondocking on the Cassier.

I cannot say I blame your wife, that was a very scary situation.

I canít remember what the story was about those two but they definitely went off the deep end.

I have Alaska as our first retirement trip. My husband has retired but I have another 44 months to go. I think I would be very nervous boondocking but it sounds like many love it.

twogypsies 09-10-2021 11:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GonetoRaces (Post 5909362)
I think I would be very nervous boondocking but it sounds like many love it.

Do you have murders in your home area?

We boondocked 95% of our 16 years of full-timing. Never a scary issue!

I think this may be the article:

https://www.foxnews.com/world/bodies...ide-by-gunfire

Nrbsr 09-11-2021 11:48 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by GonetoRaces (Post 5909362)
I cannot say I blame your wife, that was a very scary situation.

I canít remember what the story was about those two but they definitely went off the deep end.

I have Alaska as our first retirement trip. My husband has retired but I have another 44 months to go. I think I would be very nervous boondocking but it sounds like many love it.

We should probably emphasize that this was certainly not the norm. It was a one time situation that was eventually resolved. We, like nearly all others, boondocked our way across Alaska and Canada without incident and felt no threats or need to protect ourselves. It's part of the adventure and should be enjoyed. My wife was a wreck once we learned of it and our boondocking days were over but luckily we were winding down and headed towards home.

I would definitely boondock my way through Alaska and Canada if we do it again.

TheCatsRV 09-11-2021 03:09 PM

FWIW, the pair didn't harm anyone who was camping. The first two victims were in a broken-down vehicle (van) by the side of the highway waiting to for fix (or tow). The other victim (in a small pick up truck ) stopped to help. One person reported being stalked by one of the pair while pull over on the side of the highway.


https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/briti...rcmp-1.5299115

The pair were armed with an SKS - so they could say "yeah, seven six two millimeter full metal jacket" - which has more range, likely accuracy and penetrating power than a hand gun.





_Much_ more likely to die in a road accident (single vehicle, collision with other vehicles) than die by homicide in Canada.




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vseasport 09-11-2021 03:35 PM

Watching this thread. Planning the same trip for 2022

spock12 09-12-2021 08:01 AM

Itís a long time until April of next year, maybe if the government would stop pushing everyone to get vaccinated I could talk my wife into getting vaccinated. We didnít go to Dawson Creek and I wish I had went. We did go the Chicken AK. We also went up the Dalton Highway for a little ways. My truck had a poor quality def fluid light come on. The light went off but it scared the heck out of me. I have a 21 gmc dually now so I will have warranty should I go back. If I go Iíll stay 3 months or more. Itís a fun trip


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