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Thread: Motorhomes and flatlanders

  1. #1

    Default Motorhomes and flatlanders

    So I'm coming up in August to hunt sheep and my wife and kids will join me after the hunt for the general touristy type things. She wants to do it in a motorhome and I'm thinking that might not be a bad way to see the sights. I'm sure that AK residents universally hate flatlanders in RVs clogging up their highways but does anyone have suggestions for the general do's and don'ts of motorhoming in AK? How 'bout must-sees and must-avoids? Our schedule is wide open right now but it's time to start planning these things. Thank you!

  2. #2
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    Default a few ideas

    if it's your first time here, you might consider visiting denali nat. park. about 220 miles from anchorage i think. late august is also good for silver salmon in various places. the scenery is excellent just about anywhere that time of year if that's what you want, just to drive and check out the sights. i would'nt be too concerned about clogging our highways. in my experience, motorhome drivers are very courteous and watchful. the real problem is some of our hothead alaska drivers who think they have to pass on blind curves and hills. you will find their stunt driving to be some of the worst you've ever seen. and watch for moose on the roads!

  3. #3
    Member AK145's Avatar
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    Default Welcome...

    While certianly a pain on the roads from time to time, espcially when they're lined up 15 deep!....LOL, I certainly appreciate the dollars spent here in our state from tourists every year. I hope you have a great time and an enjoyable hunt. As stated above, Denali Park for sure, Valdez is also very pretty and the Silver Salmon should be running then so you can get some good fishing in down there, as with Homer and other places on the Kenai.

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    Default Motorhomes and clogged roads

    As you are probably aware, there are literally thousands of miles of 2-lane blacktop in AK. A lot of it is straight, a lot of it is not. There would be far fewer "hothead drivers" here if the un-trained drivers of large vehicles (i.e. motorhomes) would acquaint themselves with the state highway laws. There is a little enforced law that states: You must pull over if you are impedeing 5 or more vehicles on the highway.

    We witness this all the time in the summer...Don't let it happen to you.

    Don't get me wrong....I love tourists. I've worked in the industry many years.
    Welcome to our beautiful state...JUST DON'T GET IN MY WAY!!

    Sincerely,
    Your HOTHEAD ALASKAN DRIVER

    p.s- The drive to Juneau is spectacular.

  5. #5

    Default

    If you haven't done it already, get a copy of The Milepost to plan your trip ASAP. Mile-by-mile road descriptions for AK, BC, Yukon, and nearby provinces and states, with specific info on parks, camping, weather, fishing, commercial establishments, lodging, etc. You can find it in most large bookstores, as well as online at the link. It's revised annually but you really don't need the absolute latest edition; any from the last couple of years will do fine. It's one of the best travel planning guides published for any region.

  6. #6
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    Default

    I would suggest you look into renting the RV soon, I'm not sure how quickly they book up.
    Just off the top of my head I'd say that if you base out of Anchorage you should make the run down the Kenai Peninsula (my stomping grounds) to Homer & Seward, then make a loop run from Anchorage to Glenallen (with a side trip from Glenallen to Valdez & back), Glenallen to Tok (if you have the time a trip from Tok to Eagle would be a blast & I would recommend it), Tok to Fairbanks, & Fairbanks down to Anchorage with a stop at Denali park as already mentioned. With this loop there is virtually no backtracking except for the side trips which will all be out & back.
    Enjoy our state, & good luck on the goat hunt.

    By the way.... that "impeding traffic" law doesn't apply if you are already driving the speed limit & the hot heads don't want to.

    And eidsvolling is right, a copy of the Milepost is invaluable.
    Vance in AK.

    Matthew 6:33
    "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you."

  7. #7

    Default Enjoy

    Alaska has about 3000 miles of PAVED road the rest is gravel. But there are a lot of sites to see and stuff to do. ENJOY !!!

  8. #8
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    Default

    Renting an RV is in my opinion the only way to visit our state. But make sure you book one as soon as possible. Pick it up and hit Costco or the Base Commissary (if you have an ID card) and load it up with food and go!
    Alaska is probably the most RV friendly state in the Union. I own one and we use it as often as we can. At just about any pull out you can stop and spend the night if you want to avoid campgrounds.
    But as someone else said visting Denali is a must and that requires you make reservations now.
    Tennessee

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    Thumbs up Another Vote....

    for the hurry up and rent your RV now, and get a copy of the milepost for sure.

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    Default things to do

    take a bus tour in Denali NP. take a "wildlife" cruise out of seward - late Aug is a great time to do one. I like the Kenai Fijords Tours - the 6 hour cruise. get a guide & float the upper Kenai - great trout fishing starting then. lots of sheep to see along the Seward Hwy (just south of Anch) - usually goats to see across from Tern Lake (Seward - Sterling Hwy split). black bears (& maybe even an occassional brownie) will be above tree line feeding on berries - lots of above tree line scenery on the Seward Hwy.
    Valdez is beautiful, if you catch it on a clear day. they do cruises there, also. I've done both - do the one out of Seward.
    Gary

  11. #11
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    Default Motor Home

    You should get the Milepost for sure for starters. Figure out when you will be at Denali Park and get reservations for the tour buses. The last I knew they were about $25 each for a long ride back into the park. They don't allow private vehicles except late in the season by a lottery drawing. This is to minimize harassment of the animals.

    Don't be misled by the title HIGHWAY in Alaska because the Denali Highway and the Dalton Highway are not motor home roads by any stretch of the imagination under normal circumstances. In fact most rentals of any type forbid driving either of those roads let alone motorhomes.

    We have a gajillion motorhomes up here all summer and it is a real good way to travel around the state, in fact I own a 32 foot Forest River with a slide out.

  12. #12

    Default

    Thanks for the info folks! Looks like the Milepost book is the place to start.

    My family really wants to see whales--humpbacks in particular. Is the Seward "wildlife cruise" Gary mentioned a good place to get that done?

    We also will be visiting Cordova for a couple days and I'm wondering how long the ferry ride is? Thanks again.

  13. #13
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    Default whales

    we did the Kenai fjords cruise in August 2 years ago. Saw: orcas, humpbacks & fin whales.


    on the same trip, we also saw: sea otters, sea lions, harbor seals, black bears, mt goats, puffins (2 species), bald eagles, & countless other marine birds. the orca pod we saw probably numbered 25-30 whales, we could see about 6-8 on the surface at one time on different occassions. be advised that boats are not allowed to close in on whales that have been sighted - I forget what the minimum distance that they are supposed to keep. what they usually do when they spot whales is stop forward motion & coast. sometimes the whales will close in on you. orcas can get pretty brave and put on a god show - especially the young ones.
    Gary

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