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Thread: Transporting Boats up the ALCAN

  1. #1

    Default Transporting Boats up the ALCAN

    I am pulling a 19 foot boat up the ALCAN, anything important that I should know besides take it easy and have an extra spare?

  2. #2

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    Quote Originally Posted by CJT View Post
    I am pulling a 19 foot boat up the ALCAN, anything important that I should know besides take it easy and have an extra spare?
    Something about bonding issues in Canada. I don't really know what that means, I just know my uncle got held up when he tried to bring a trailer of pontoons.

  3. #3
    Member Larsenvega's Avatar
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    Bring more than one spare. I lost one tire around Destruction Bay and it was an uneasy feeling driving the next 150 mi to the next town knowing I didn't have another spare. If one of the other tires fell victim to the road construction/big rocks, I would've been screwed!

  4. #4

    Default after pulling 4 boats up here

    the one thing I do every time is replace all tires before coming up, and completely service the axle bearings. For the trip...nothing speacial.They are use to folks hauling these things up here. Keep all your regisration for the boat just like you were hauling her to the boat launch. The most important thing to remember is.... all the small towns in southern Canada have great little cafes and small town diners, I have some of my best meals in these little towns! have fun.

  5. #5

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    CJT,

    What kind are you hauling? I'm going to be doing the same thing in September. I've got a 16.5 ft aluminum hull fishing boat w/ a 40 horse.

    I'm definitely planning the two spare tire idea and my axle has buddy berrings so I can re-grease them on the highway - 3500+miles.

  6. #6
    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
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    In September of 2006 I trailered my boat from Toronto to Yellowknife in the NWT (5500KM or 3400Miles). I put new rims and tires on the trailer (kept the old ones as spares), repacked the bearings and packed a spare set, grease and tools just in case. I checked my hubs to see if they were heating up at every fueling stop and had no issues at all on the trip.
    About 1500KMs of the trip is on road as bad or worse than the Alcan.
    You want to pay attention to your tow vehicle as well. Check tires, belts, fluid levels etc. If your trailer breaks down you can still drive your tow vehicle to the next town but you can't take your boat if your truck dies.

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    Member garnede's Avatar
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    Be sure to slow down when you see frost heaves. Otherwise your boat will be air born!
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.

    http://wouldieatitagainfoodblog.blogspot.com/

  8. #8

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    I will be towing a 07 19 foot alumaweld free drifter. Hopefully all goes well.

  9. #9

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    Watch for the frost heaves is the part I always watch for. They are usually marked by orange flagging at the side of the road, but not always. After a while you will be able to spot them before you get there, by what looks like skid marks on the road after the bump. I have driven the road 5 times. The road for the most part doesn't become to bad until after Whitehorse. And I would suggest you get a copy of the Milepost. It is a very detailed book of maps of the alaska highway and all the highways leading to it. And all of the roads in Alaska.

  10. #10
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Default A

    A couple cans of Fix-A-Flat, the big ones, are not a bad idea as well as a few tire plugs. Knowing how to plug a tire is a bonus too!

    Vietnam - June 70 - Feb. 72
    Cancer from Agent Orange - Aug. 25th 2012
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  11. #11

    Default i just did the drive in dec

    but i drove from florida left dec 3 got here the friday before christmas it was a nitemare everything from blizzards,to having the boat rear-ended, having debit card froze due to "suspicious activity", having both tires on the trailer start separating, having to drive for 3 days straight with tire chains on due to crummy british columbia roads covered in ice. i was towing a 22 foot sea nymph with a 2 wheel drive f250 diesel i know u may call me stupid for doing the drive by myself with a 2 wheel drive truck in dec but when u get your dd214 and your son is in alaska what else are u gonna do. anyway just have spare tires, plug kits more then one way to pay for stuff as in 2 debit cards or cash as some towns wont take checks from people just passing thruogh stuff to clean your windshield and mirrors clean several tiedowns. when i was rear ended in alberta i had a 3000lb tiedown snap on the stern of my boat but luckily i had 2 straps on the stern tiedowns and one over the back of the boat. just a hint if u get hit by someone that has insurance through meloche monix do not expect rapid results as it will take 6 months for your claim to go through this is me talking through expierence as i recieved my payment about a week ago for the accident i was in in dec so have money for repairs and the bribe at the customs office. but seriously dont rush the trip that is where u will get screwed thinking u can make it in a hour or so sooner and then bam u r in a ditch with a overturned boat. be safe and take breaks have lots of fluids and snacks
    Last edited by jason66396639; 05-14-2009 at 20:21. Reason: i am a moron spelling

  12. #12
    Moderator Daveinthebush's Avatar
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    Unhappy Credit card

    On the credit card. Best to always call on a long trip and inform them that you are traveling. They will make a note in you file as of your destination and dates of travel.

    Yep a good tip. I made it all the way to New York once only to have my Wells Fargo card expire. SO they cancelled the old card and sent the new one to Alaska!!!!! And the nearest Wells Fargo from Central New York? South Dakota!!!!

    Vietnam - June 70 - Feb. 72
    Cancer from Agent Orange - Aug. 25th 2012
    Cancer Survivor - Dec. 14th 2012

  13. #13
    Member akshrop's Avatar
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    Do not think your boat is a U-Haul and put the kitchen sink in it. That could get you in trouble. Otherwise the other guys hit anything I can think of.

  14. #14
    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daveinthebush View Post
    On the credit card. Best to always call on a long trip and inform them that you are traveling. They will make a note in you file as of your destination and dates of travel.

    Yep a good tip. I made it all the way to New York once only to have my Wells Fargo card expire. SO they cancelled the old card and sent the new one to Alaska!!!!! And the nearest Wells Fargo from Central New York? South Dakota!!!!

    That's why I have a mitt load of cards!!!!

  15. #15
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    Exclamation

    Just got done with our 15th northbound trip up the highway, we actually did the Cassiar for the middle leg as we usually do.

    For the most part, the road is in fine shape ... but what we call the Two Hundred Miles of Hell is still that ... and it's in full glory this year.

    This refers to the 125 miles on the canadian side of the border and the first 75 towards Tok.

    In a std. vehicle ... it's not bad. Towing presents a diffeerent story here as the heaves go every which way and while the tower is going up, the towee is going down. Very dangerous section with something on behind you if you push it too hard.

    Plan on a full day to run this section unless you want to risk your health or at least not beat the crap out of everything. These days, we make Whitehorse to Tok a full day ... you'll be ready for a break if towing through here anyhow

    Make sure your ball is tight and check it a few times through here and also make sure the latching on the trailer side has no slop. I've talked to many who have thrown their tows off the ball in here.

    The rest of the advice is good ... spare tires (not looking to be a big issue at the moment as ltitle construction and fw sections with freshly grated rocks or bigger ones to bust a sidewall as we often used to see) and spare bearing kits are always a good idea. Just don't forget to have someting along to jack up your tow

  16. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Ball - Piscatorial Pursuits View Post
    Just got done with our 15th northbound trip up the highway, we actually did the Cassiar for the middle leg as we usually do.
    What, and miss the Liard River hotspings? That's the best part of the whole trip.

  17. #17

    Default first step - clean the boat & trailer

    OK - so why do you need to clean the boat & trailer? Has nothing to do with the safety of towing -- has to do with the safety of Alaska waters & the critters that swim in them. I did not see where you are coming from, but a lot of Lower 48 waters are infested with invasive critters like zebra mussels, New Zealand mudsnails, and aquatic weeds (like Eurasian watermifoil and hydrilla) that we do not have -- and do not want -- in Alaska. So, please take care to clean the boat and trailer thoroughly before you trailer it on up here -- we, and our native critters, will appreciate it! For more specific info, check out this website (http://www.protectyourwaters.net/pre...er_boaters.php) -- has a graphic showing where to look for weeds & such and more info on other invasives.

    Thanks & have a safe and fun trip!

  18. #18
    Member mjm316's Avatar
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    I just made the trip from MN to Anchorage 2 weeks ago. The road was just fine all the way to Whitehorse then just after that it stated to get pretty nasty. LOTS of frost heaves most marked but not all. Watch for buffalo those things won't move for anything. I would really dread pulling a trailer on that road. Also, lots of big trucks that take up most if not all of the road in places. Hope this helps any other questions feel free to p.m me. Good luck

  19. #19
    Member Cap'n Ron's Avatar
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    Default Now that you have everything you need...

    Think about where you are putting it! Have your jack handy and tools you need to access your spare tire. You might have to do the job in a hurry, there is no shoulder on a lot of the AK Hwy, so you cannot get off the road to work on the tire. So, take some flares or warning triangles. AND, bring a headlamp so your hands are free if you have to do anything in the dark....although there won't be much of that this time of year!

    If you have a windshield on the boat, duck tape foam to it, keeps the flying rocks from hurting it. And, if you can travel on the weekend, much better, most of the trucks run weekdays only, especially in CA.

    It's the best roadtrip in the country, I've done it 4 times, twice pulling a boat with no real problems. Did anyone mention spares for the boat trailer as well as the tow rig? I blew a trailer tire, so picked up another one in Jasper, cost a lot, but glad to get it. So, if you use your spare and don't have a second one, pick one up ASAP.

    Have fun, and don't get freaked about the frost heaves, you'll soon find a comfortable speed and just don't push it.

  20. #20
    Member Maast's Avatar
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    I pulled a 8900 lb 26 foot Carver Santa Cruz behind a Suburban 2500 w/ a 454 engine 2.5 years ago, the biggest thing for me was the godawful prices of gas in Canada. You might want to think of loading up w/ gas cans in the lower 48. It was my 5th trip up or down the Alcan but the only one towing a large load.

    I REALLY recommend having the boat shrinkwrapped before the trip, the road dust got into everything and it was a real pain to clean up.

    Bring tools to work on the boat suspension and towing gear, I sprung one of the trailer suspension leaves and had to mickey-mouse it back into place for half the trip.

    DONT BE A SPEED DEMON, take your time, go a reasonable speed, the spring I mentioned popped because I hit a stinking BIG frostheave that I couldnt see until I was right on it and the boat and trailer **** near launched themselves (and me) off the edge of a fairly tall dropoff, I was only going 55 when I hit it.

    Check your wheel lugnuts and the trailer bearings often, I lost my drivers side truck tire because the lugnuts came off and it literally passed me on the freeway and I'm fighting to keep the rig on the road until I can stop, I'm still picking bits of upholstery out of my bunghole for that one. The weight plus the pounding literally vibrated the lugnuts loose.

    Like Bob said, the area straddling the AL/CAN border is the worst, from Haines junction on to Tok it can get kind of hairy.

    Don't put household good in the boat, the border customs agents completely tore through the 10-15 boxes of stuff I had in the boat - and didnt put it back.

    All things considered, I'd take the ferry if I were you.

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