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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Looking for some info:


How late in the season can you ....sanely ride up to Alaska?

Is Denali accessible late Sept early Oct?

Easy to find rooms along the way? (cross in N.D., up through Edmonton, over to Dawson Creek, etc)
Will a new set of tires leaving be enough? (anticipate 8-9k round trip)


any help would be appreciated.
 

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Not sure of best time BUT i will say a few years ago wife and I flew to Alaska and rented a Harley to tour the area.....................I can say that you will have a wonderful time.. Roads were all in good condition, weather was decent, very clean......The Harley (well this is another point)
 

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Getting a room was not a problem for us when we went in late July 2015. ( The long haul truckers I deal with told me summer is no problem but winter can be a bit dicey as the ice roads are open, everything is on the move and no one wants to sleep in the truck when its -30.)

- Dawson city has a music festival late July for 3 days. A day or two either side was no problem.

I left with new tires and I did replace the back tire in Prince George as it was well past the wear bars, they had one in stock and they could change it right now. We were two up and loaded accordingly. We did a lot of gravel including Top of the world highway and the arctic circle. Gravel is a bit harder on tires but the pavement, specifically the cassiar highway, seemed to wear them faster. Front tire replaced not too long after I got home. 9000Km total.

As far as the time of year goes I cannot speak for Alaska but I have seen winter close in the first week of Oct. (Meaning it snowed and stayed till spring) Edmonton area.
 

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You would be pushing the weather window. Two weeks ago there was about foot of snow from Pink Mountain north to Watson Lake. It melted a couple days later.
Denali NP is open but the bus tour will be closed when you get their. Night time temps in the Yukon are already in the 30's......
A fresh set of tires is a must, I make trips from Alaska to Michigan and back on a set of D4 rear and 509 front.
You should be able to find lodging in the communities but a lot of the roadhouse lodging will be closed. Same thing with fuel... I started a thread in the Rides, Trips and Events section that has info for a ride to Alaska. My list of gas stops should be valid any time of the year.
 

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Prior to my first ride to Alaska in 2012, I consulted with the members of this site in my preparations phase and one comment stood out with me that someone posted reference the time frame. 15 May - 15 Sept are the dates given if memory serves. The part that stood out with me was the member said, "If you're up there in the middle of September, you'd better be at Mile Marker "0" of the Alcan Highway and your front wheel better be facing south." In 2012 we rode up for the Gold Wing Rally in Anchorage in July and this past June, 2019 we attempted the IBA UCC ride from Key West to Prudhoe Bay and got to Wiseman, AK. Next attempt is late July, 2021 cause everybody knows the road north over the Antigun Pass is dry during July and August. Finding gas, a hotel or campsite was never an issue. Last word on the subject. If you have enough nerve to take a Gold Wing north of Fairbanks on the Dalton Highway aka The Haul Road and you make it to the Artic Circle or even Coldfoot, those guys on the adventure bikes are gonna look at you like you're a pit bull with aids. Best ride ever!
 

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when we went

in 2015, we went in late July and through mid August
It was already cold at night, but all we ever hit was rain, never snow.
I would be willing to risk through mid September....if later than that I would have my cold weather gear and be prepared for snow.


This is all based on what I have read, Bob and a couple of others who live there can give the best advise.
Best wishes and good luck on the ride
bryon
 

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@BE_QWIK
Just want to follow up on this. I have been checking weather in the Yukon daily because I am going to take a trip in my pickup. I am seeing some temps that are dipping into the 20's at night in the Yukon along the Alcan route. That can cause frost on the streets that may not clear until mid day in the shady areas. It makes it difficult to make any miles on a bike. For more than 25 years I have spent Labor Day weekend and the week after in the Yukon on my Wings. We always consider it the end of the riding season.
I am not saying you should not try it if you must but I do not recommend this late in the year. There are lots of other areas to ride that would be more comfortable to ride in. Plan a summer trip next year so you can enjoy yourself.
 

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the pavement, specifically the cassiar highway, seemed to wear them faster.
Yep, that chip seal they use for top coat is MUCH coarser than in more southerly areas of Canada and the US.
 
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July is a safe month. June could be a bit too chilly and wet, and you can get snow in the high country in September. When I did my Alaska trip I left July 1st and returned around the end of August (approx 17,000 miles round trip)
 

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Alcan update, We took the ferry to Skagway Alaska and then drove my Tundra to Watson Lake, Yukon yesterday. From Skagway to Teslin it was in the 60's and would have been a nice ride on our Wings....I was wondering if my prior advise was valid? But as we left Teslin heading to Watson Lake the sky's opened up with rain so heavy we had the wipers on high and slowed to 25 mph. It was the longest 160 miles We have ever driven. The temp dropped to about 40 degrees. Today's drive from Watson Lake to Fort Nelson was a nasty mix, snow capped mountains, rain, sleet and a wee bit of sun, lowest temp I noticed was 36 while in the sleet.
I think my prior advise was valid, it's just too late in the year for motorcycle travel up here.

We saw lot's of wildlife and the fall colors are at there peak. I will post some pictures when we get somewhere with faster wifi. There was two heards of Bison with lots of young ones near Liard Hot Springs. We saw a few thing we have never seen... Looked like two birds feeding on road kill but as we got along side we saw a hawk take flight and a bunny rabbit run off. We also saw two dead black bears and one black wolf. They appeared to have been trampled by the Bison.

Oh, motorcycles seen on the Alcan the last two days... zero
 

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Thank you everyone for your input/advice.....especially BigBob1. Will wait and try next summer sometime.
This is your best choice. It's too beautiful up there to be miserable up there. I spent a July exploring up there back in the late '80s. Met a Winger couple from Cedar Rapids, IA. (I was living in far west Chicago 'burbs at the time.) I asked them how they were enjoying their trip. She piped up that she lost her glasses somewhere in Washington and hadn't seen a dang thing since then! (That must have been a long ride home!) Lesson: bring extras of whatever you really need. And you'll need bug-spray. You'll really need it. And Denali is worth the trip alone.
 

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I was there in July of this year and the weather was very dry. I spoke with some people who were there in June, and it was a bit wet for them. I was gone five and a half weeks and only had my full rain suit on twice...the second time was in Minnesota on my way home back to Michigan. I was prepared to due battle with the mosquitoes, but they were a non issue, probably since it was so dry. I sat out at night in shorts and flip flops and never was bitten. I did have a thermacel which I placed on the ground near me and I would spray the vegetation in the campsite with bug killer. Except for 3 unusually hot days, the temperature was very comfortable.
 

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This is your best choice. It's too beautiful up there to be miserable up there. I spent a July exploring up there back in the late '80s. Met a Winger couple from Cedar Rapids, IA. (I was living in far west Chicago 'burbs at the time.) I asked them how they were enjoying their trip. She piped up that she lost her glasses somewhere in Washington and hadn't seen a dang thing since then! (That must have been a long ride home!) Lesson: bring extras of whatever you really need. And you'll need bug-spray. You'll really need it. And Denali is worth the trip alone.
I have a spare pair of glasses in the bike and car at all times. Can't see squat without them :crying:
 
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I only need glasses to see. Seriously, to read. My SO got me a pair of fold-able reading glasses that fit into a case as small as a Zippo as one of her first gifts to me when we met almost twenty years ago. I use them to this day. So handy for restaurant menus, especially in low-lit places, or for just about anything where being able to read/see up close (splinter) is helpful. Whenever I pull out the case and flip it open in a public establishment (much like a Zippo!) people immediately violently turn their heads towards me as if I'm pulling out a cigarette lighter and daring to smoke in an Illinois restaurant or bar. Nope, just wanting to see what I'm ordering and willing to mess with people at the same time. Ta-da.

Sorry, all. I used an offensive word to describe "violently turn"ing heads. Busted again.
 
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