Aussies on Tour

Discussion in 'Alaska' started by snarley, Jan 10, 2013.

  1. snarley

    snarley Been here awhile

    Joined:
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    503
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    Aussie
    Hi all,

    Just planning a ride for late August/early September from Anchorage/Fairbanks/Coldfoot return Fairbanks along Alaska Highway to Jasper/Banff, down to Montana and finish in Oregon.

    Just got a few questions;

    Will be riding BMW GS's and are expierienced long distance riders.

    1. Is the road from Fairbanks to Coldfoot dirt or tar ?
    2. Any suggestions on the best touring maps for this route ?
    3. I know it will be cold but what are the general riding conditions that time of year.


    Cheers

    snarley
    #1
  2. Alaskahack

    Alaskahack Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2009
    Oddometer:
    615
    Location:
    Wasilla
    Cheers

    Refer to the Alaska Primer in this thread written by Alcan Rider

    Read it and commit it to memory see you this summer
    #2
  3. AK Bob

    AK Bob AKAM

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2010
    Oddometer:
    227
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    Fairbanks, AK
    Snarley is it:

    1. Yes.

    2. In AK you don't need no stinkin Maps. The "Milepost" will help geting you to Banff, and every where else.

    3. Wet, Dry, Hot, Cold, Rain, Snow... All can happen in the same day.. Just aboout any month of the year,so
    prepair for it.

    Keep in mind to much crap that you arn't going to use on a bike that is heavy already,on a bad road, you get my drift.

    Alcan Riders posts are the filled with lots of good information. He probably has more time on two wheels up / down the haul road, and Alcan than anyone else I know. So check out

    Read this First http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=788417

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=586780

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=599310

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=576459

    When you get in range, give me a shout. Alaska Airheads will be glad to help.

    Enjoy the ride.
    #3
  4. snarley

    snarley Been here awhile

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    Thanks Bob,


    What did you mean in answer to Q1 ? Yes it's dirt or yes it's tar ??
    #4
  5. Alaskajeff

    Alaskajeff Long timer

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    YES it's, dirt, gravel, MUD, tar, you name it, you got it!! Prepare for the worst and pray for the best.
    #5
  6. Spousal Unit

    Spousal Unit Concubine

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    Alaska, Montana
    And rain, and hail, and snow, and my personal favorite thunder snow
    #6
  7. snarley

    snarley Been here awhile

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    Well it can't be that bad, seen plenty of pics of Goldwings, Harley's, and other big outfits up that way !
    #7
  8. nuttynu

    nuttynu Long timer

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    It ain't all that bad. If you can handle the worst weather . You'll be fine. Just ride . Don't let all these horror stories scare you away.
    #8
  9. snarley

    snarley Been here awhile

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    Yeah no worries, was just trying to get an accurate report of the road surface without all the emotive nostalgia.....we 2 have some pretty isolated and rough roads down here :)
    #9
  10. nuttynu

    nuttynu Long timer

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    This summer I rode to Coldfoot only and turned back. (On my Cbr)
    From Fairbanks to the beginning of Dalton--- all paved , which is about 81 miles.

    From te beggining, you'll hit packed dirt road... And then you occasionallyhit some stretch paved road. They'll usually run
    For about half a mile or sometime usually longer. . Once you
    Passed the Yukon stopped, it's another 60 miles till the Famous "artic circle " sign.
    From there , it's all paved for another 60 miles till Coldfoot.
    #10
  11. Alcan Rider

    Alcan Rider Frozen Fossil

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    Just over the rear wheel
    From Fairbanks to the beginning of the Dalton Hwy/Haul Road, it is good asphalt/tar with some nice curves.

    From beginning of the Dalton (Mile 0) to around Mile 10 (used to be Mile 18.5 but there is construction going on to bring the pavement south a few miles farther) it is gravel, which can be loose, muddy, dusty, or a combination of all three (if it is not snowing) depending on road maintenance and the weather. Broken pavement (as long as there is no oncoming traffic, use the entire road width to dodge potholes and loose gravel in the broken areas) for about 5 miles, then gravel again to about Mile 37. Nice pavement, fairly new, to Mile 49.5 then back to gravel all the way to Mile 90, where you hit some old, often potholed, pavement. That continues past the Arctic Circle (Mile 115), on past Coldfoot (Mile 175) for about another 20 miles, with new construction adding more miles of pavement at the north end, too.

    Just before the Arctic Circle, from Mile 110 to 112, there is a gravel hill known as Beaver Slide. It is usually pretty good. At the bottom, however, you begin a stretch of broken pavement again for a mile or two. There are also some pretty bad breaks north of the Arctic Circle for almost 20 miles, until you climb up to Gobblers Knob, and then again descending to the Prospect Creek area. Once past Pump Station 5, along the Jim River, it is pretty good again.

    Just don't get in a big hurry. Never outride your sight distance, as conditions can change very, very quickly. And keep an eye on your mirrors as traffic can creep up behind you when you aren't expecting it.

    If road maintenance is going on in one of the gravel areas, i.e. watering the road surface to soften it, then grading to rearrange the bumps, it can be a bit of a challenge with the mud and the berms pushed up by the graders. Again, just take your time and it is all manageable.

    A rider who came up last year on a Concours/ZG1000 sport tourer just posted some great videos on You Tube of his ride to Deadhorse. Take a look at those and you will get a really good idea of what you can expect. Sport Touring the Dalton I believe the Dalton Hwy starts with #3, but they're all good and worth watching.
    #11
  12. AK Bob

    AK Bob AKAM

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    Have to contend with is Locusts, Frogs, and Rivers of blood.

    The tail end of August the state blood sucking bird population should be reduced some what.

    In late Aug / Sept snow is probable in the high country.

    If I'm not out killing the Moose, I will help any way I can.
    #12
  13. HouseofBeaver

    HouseofBeaver Dont harsh my mellow

    Joined:
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    Reside in Anchorage, Live in Talkeetna (AK)
    Snarley,

    You'll find the riding community up here welcoming and supportive.
    If you need support in Anchorage, maybe I can be of assistance, or if you find yourself in Talkeetna (just a couple hours north) I can offer tent space close to the village center. I've only been knocking around ADV a few years but I continue to be amazed by the lengths to which folks will go to help a fellow inmate in need.
    My quess is it's similar down under, as well. I'm counting on it; there's a group of three of us heading that way in late April. We're taking a month to ride up the West cost, dirt and camping when we can. (two DRs and a 800 GS)
    Gonna be a good one for sure!
    HOB
    #13
  14. sandgroper

    sandgroper Long timer

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    We did a trip about 10 years in Alaska, it would have to be the best ride we have ever done. The only problem we had was stopping ever 10/15 minutes to take pictures :lol3
    Ed
    #14
  15. nevgriff64

    nevgriff64 Spelt with 2 ffs Super Moderator

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    Make sure you stop every 10/15 minutes, Snarley. :clap:wink:
    #15
  16. MMNORTH

    MMNORTH Got GUZZI

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    Vancouver WA