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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just started to plan a ride from Jacksonville Beach Fl to Alaska leaving June 1,07 what should we look out for, plan for, what to take along, and what is a must to see. Should we pull a trailer I have a Bushtec pro and con to taking a trailer along.

Thanks for the reply in advance
 

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Alaska ride 2007

Hi Snoopy.

Made my first Alaska ride in July 2006 from St Augustine Florida.
Need to do it again in 2007.
This time I will not make motel/hotel reservations more than a day in advance. I found making reservations forced me to ride a specific milage each day in order avoid charges. I always carry a computer so i can make up my trip as i go along and stop at will for hazards and tourist stuff.
Do you plan to travel solo or in a group?
There are other wing riders on this forum planning Alaska in 2007.
 

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A friend of mine did it back in '97 on his new GL1500 pulling a small trailer from Tucson, AZ. Said be prepared for some cold and rain - frogtoggs worked real good for him and his wife. Other than that he had no complaints and it was an easy trip.
 

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Look out for: Construction in Yukon and Alaska. By June 1 it will be in full swing, and construction up this way means a lot more than having to use just one lane of a divided highway. Quite often it means you get to drive where no one has ever gone before. :lol:

Plan for: Taking another trip in a few years, as one trip will only whet your appetite for another, longer, one. Also plan for every sort of weather imaginable, as there is a good chance you will see it somewhere along the way. More than once I've left Fort Nelson in a cold, heavy downpour only to have to open all my vents to cool off in the hot sun 100 miles farther north.

Take along: Milepost (or selected pages snipped out, as it's a pretty hefty volume). It has the highways logged mile by mile, with nearly every feature noted. Lots of advertising, but sometimes the ads tell you what you wanted to know. This will also help you to learn the names of the highways up this way, because few of us who live here know them by their assigned numbers. Been here nearly 50 years myself, since before they even had numbers, and I still can't remember them.
:oops:

Re - trailer: Others do it, but most stop at motels overnight. The trailer can be a problem through construction areas, but should present no problem on most highways.

Dozens of "must sees": Denali (best chance of viewing it is from Talkeetna, off the Parks Hwy., Valdez (the ride down is the main attraction - with a stop at Worthington Glacier mandatory), Portage Valley, one of the glacier cruises (I favor the Stan Stephens cruises out of Valdez, but you can't go wrong with any of them), Seward, Homer (and the rest of the Kenai Peninsula on the way down there), Skagway and Haines (connected by a one-hour ferry ride, but check the schedule to make sure you can get on), and more that others will probably mention.

And yes, it is an easy trip these days. I've ridden it back and forth every year (at least once) since '99, on my GL1800, as well as my Concours, and '82 Suzuki GS1100G.

PS: If you want to see wildlife, stop early, then get a very early start just before sunrise (very early up north that time of year) and you will see far more than the average tourist. I usually ride all night and see animals that others just wish they had seen. You will also see quite a few during the day, as well, including herds of wild bison grazing along the road.
 

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You say "we". Is that multiple bikes or with a passenger? If you are riding solo and staying in motels, you can do it without a trailer. If you are two up and or camping, a trailer is pretty much a must. I rode from Key West to Fairbanks by way or New Brunswick this past June. I had a large Rivco tail rack which literally fell apart. Other guys had trailers and wound up carrying lots of my gear. You will need summer clothing as well as winter clothing and rain gear. Just too much stuff traveling two up. Even if you plan on staying in motels, they may not be available if you don't have reservations or stop early. That is peak time and the tour companies gobble the limited supply up. I like riding until I'm ready to stop and don't care for a schedule. Consequently, we wound up sleeping beside the road multiple times because there was no room at the inn. I would definitely try and line something up in Fairbanks before leaving. When we were there, they were booked solid for a month and the rates are double what you would expect.

As for what to see, it's all great once you get north of Calgary. Banff, Jasper and the Ice Fields are beautiful. Lake Louise and Moraine Lake. The Alcan highway has great scenery. Kluane Lake, Muncho Lake and the surrounding areas are spectacular.

Probably the best things we had were the Gerbings and in my case, also the heated grips with a good pair of waterproof winter gloves. Frogg Toggs worked great. A good pair of waterproof winter boots are a must. I have a short windshield. The other two bikes had tall ones. They had a real problem trying to look through them in all the rain mixed with the dirt. I could look over and see very well. Goretex works much better than leather in the arctic climate in my opinion. Communication is almost mandatory too. Passenger to passenger as well as bike to bike. Warnings about road conditions, wildlife, when and where to stop for gas, problems, etc. We had the Milepost, but it is a pain to stop, dig it out and try to figure out what to do. It is good to study before hand to get a relationship as to where and what to see is. Also, don't count on the gas stations to necessarily still be open. We found more than a couple closed early, permanently or out of gas. Finally we decided to stop at 100 miles or there bouts just to be safe. Had a couple of times where the trailer pullers were on fumes. They were getting about 5 mpg less than me.

We are planning on a return trip maybe as early as 07. However, we may stay in Canada or try and get to some of the off beaten path spots in Alaska. Fairbanks, and Anchorage are just like any other large American towns. The wildlife, scenery and overall experience is by far superior in Alberta, BC and Yukon in my opinion.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks guys for the info hope it keeps coming in. There are two other goldwings and maybe one cruiser. We will camp a lot because I don't like to set a schedule of where to be when. Move at our own pace, don't care about the big cities we want to see the land and wildlife stop and do some fishing. All three Goldwings have short windshields I don't like to ride and have to look through the shield.

Hope the weather is good and we hit a spell where we don't have to fight a lot of rain. My brother lived in Alaska for 10 years and I have been there a few times but always flew in. This time I want to see the land.
 
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