Early Feeler for Alaska Bike Shipping in August

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by kkodet, Apr 18, 2012.

  1. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    Hi Everyone!

    Today I was contacted by an inmate who wants to put together a shipment to Alaska in August.

    Just a quick intro for those who haven't seen my other thread. I am Keith Kodet, owner/founder of Route 55 Transport out of Michigan. I ship cars and bikes around the country in my 42 foot enclosed trailer. I am a fully licensed and insured transport company, and have many years of experience. Lately I have been shipping a lot of bikes, many through contacts here.

    Here is what is in the works, please let me know if you may be interested, or even have ideas for how this would work better, as this would be a new type of shipment for me. This is my idea so far:

    I would travel the U.S. and Canada picking up your bikes from you in late July. All bikes would be in Anchorage, Alaska by Aug 1st. I am working with a personal friend and fellow inmate who lives in Anchorage. He and/or I would be available to pick you up and drop you off at the airport in Anchorage any time in the month of August. His house in Anchorage would be the muster point. The bikes would need to be back from your Alaska adventures by a date yet to be set, but most likely near or after Aug 31st. At that time the bikes would be loaded up and delivered back to their homes across the U.S. and Canada. At all times when you are not with your bike, it would be under lock and key in either my enclosed trailer with me or at the inmate's house in Anchorage (a nice suburban area).

    I can also offer storage at my Michigan trucking terminal in Marine City (1/2 mile from U.S./Canada border crossing) for those who may wish to drop off their bike to me for the shipment (for a reduced rate)

    I would most likely come up with a flat rate pricing, either round trip, or one way for those who wish. The flat rate pricing would be posted, and regionally based. Usually pricing is shipment specific, but I think this would be easier. The cheapest rate would be for those who drop off and pick up their bike at my Michigan trucking terminal.

    We would have a small fee for pickup and drop-off from the airport in Anchorage and bike storage there. That would go to the inmate in Alaska but could be paid through my business if you wish.

    The goal would be to get 10-15 bikes in on this, as it could be affordable for everyone. I would either do this in two loads, or would stay in Alaska and get some riding in myself during the month of August. I would also be willing to hook up with other riders who may want to do some trips but would like to ride with someone.

    This is in the feeler/possible planning stages as of now, so please post up here your ideas and if you are interested. I think this could be a great way for many to get an affordable summer adventure in this year!

    Keith Kodet

    Route 55 Transport L.L.C.

    810-614-8038
    #1
  2. oclv454

    oclv454 Been here awhile

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    Keith, my two friends are in. I'll pm you their phone numbers and
    I'll give them your number so you can work directly with them. Thanks!
    #2
  3. windypoint

    windypoint Been here awhile

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    I have lived in Southeast Alaska for twenty years. At the risk of sounding negative, August is too late to start a trip in Alaska. Weather is well into Fall by then for travel up and down the Coastal mountain range. The interior is doable but can be cold. The trip down the Alcan in August is very iffy with a lot of rain possible. It only matters for the time you will be doing it but the odds are not good.
    #3
  4. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    Great!

    I still need to look at and figure out dates and such to find if I would be doing this in one big trip or two. Thanks Again!

    For those of you who would like to chime in, would you rather have your bikes back ASAP in early September, or would you be O.K. with a few week wait should I do this in two shipments?

    For now it would look like I would just stay in Alaska, but I need to make sure it would be worth my while to do so.
    #4
  5. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    oclv454 chose the dates of August, however I am not opposed to going up earlier if I split this into two trips.

    Another option may be: I ship up bikes in late June/early July. Bikes would stay at Anchorage Inmates home, inmates could pick up/drop off when they want. I then bring bikes back in late Aug/early September.

    Honestly that would probably make the most sense, however that would mean that most would have 2 months of time wrapped up with their bikes. Is it doable? Or is that just too long? Input is appreciated.
    #5
  6. windypoint

    windypoint Been here awhile

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    If you are shipping the bikes both ways or people elect to ferry back, August will work for an interior trip. The problem with Southeast Alaska. And Northern BC is the weather patterns bring a lot of wind and rain in August and September is Not good.
    #6
  7. oclv454

    oclv454 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the heads up, Windypoint. I know it varies year to year and
    hopefully it will work out. With work and family commitments this was
    the window we have to work with. Plus with record cold and snow I
    figure you are going to have a delayed start to summer.
    #7
  8. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    I am really liking the idea of an early july run to drop off bikes in Anchorage and a late aug run to pick them up. I'd like some input on this before firming up plans.
    #8
  9. Gezerbike

    Gezerbike Hey Rocky...........

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    I'm gonna chime in here since I and a few friends did this exact same thing last year. I answered an ad from someone on Craigslist looking to haul 9 bikes to Anchorage and back. Originally we were to do this in early July, but difficulty in filling the trailer moved it out to a July 20th pickup at my home in suburban Chicago and we arrived in Anchorage on July 29th. He had the bikes in his trailer ( 36 foot enclosed ) a couple of miles from the airport. We were on the road within two hours of our plane touching down. We spent 9 days touring Alaska ( 2,300 miles ). All our gear went on the trailer so we each just had a small carry on for the flight. There were good and bad things about the date. August is the begining of the rainy season and we ran into rain everyday...somewhere. Mostly it was just light stuff, but we had BIG rain going from Anchorage to Whittier with wind gusts above 50. Just added to the adventure. But bugs were almost non existant, so I say a little rain and no bugs was a great trade off. Temps averaged in the low 60's during the day and high 40's in the evening. Darkness lasted about 4 hours. We camped the first 5 days and I found a cabin to rent in Hope for $120 a night so it was nice to have a bed and shower for the last couple of days. I won't go into what we paid, but there was no way I could have ridden up and back for what we were charged. The guy who hauled them probably didn't make any money, but I think he probably broke even, and he and his best friend had quite the adventure. I've wanted to do Alska for years, and doing it this way was just spectacular. Non of us are young guys, most of us can't really take the amount of time away from work that riding up there entales, and when we got home, we didn't need a week to recover from the ride back. Our bikes arrived back home 2 weeks to the day we flew home. Just a spectacular trip and one none of us will ever forget. Think hard before passing this opportunity up. And funny thing is, it was just about this time a year ago that I found the ad and contacted hime. Go figure.
    #9
  10. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    Thank you for posting that. I am not looking to make a huge profit on this, just cover my expenses and time. It's been a few years since I have been up to Alaska and have wanted to go back since. Also, a few good friends of mine have moved up there in recent times and it would be nice to see them again.

    I started this company knowing full well I'd probably never get rich doing it, but I get my travel paid for, which is great, because travelling is one of my great passions.
    #10
  11. Gezerbike

    Gezerbike Hey Rocky...........

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    The man who hauled our bikes was 69, and his assistant was 76 ! They were quite the pair. Bsides the 6 bikes he was hauling up there, he had three trailers loaded onto the flatbed of his truck that weighed 7,000 lbs. He had them sold in Alaska and delivered them while we were out riding. Several of his unexpected expenses were 1. Fuel. He had raised his price to us once after we signed on and we understood that. But I think he miscalculated just what fuel costs were in Canada. Much higher. 2. Then there was the clutch they blew somewhere in British Columbia. Luckily, they were in a town that had a truck mechanic and they had a new clutch air shipped overnight. Then they ended up driving non stop into Anchorage and made it in 12 hours before our flight landed. Then the 76 year old assistant decidied that the ride up was enough, so he flew home, leaving Ken to make the trip back with 11 bikes by himself. When he picked our bikes in Chicago and was leaving my street with his rig all loaded up, me and one of the other guys just looked at each other, laughed and both wondered if we would ever see our bikes again ! But he was a man of his word and he got the job done. Total trip for him was over 11,000 miles. And he gave us the trip of a lifetme....unless we do it again. And I'd do it with Ken if he was game.
    #11
  12. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    Interesting story. It sounds almost like he was doing this on the side or something.

    I do this solely as my business, and realize the costs. I have been doing some preliminary crunching, and I feel my total costs (without profit, which is not a four letter word) will probably be around $4,000-$5,000.

    So, I need to see how I can make this work for everyone.

    I have never jacked up a price after an agreement is made and never will.

    I hope to make this work, and would love to do it if it can.
    #12
  13. Capt2u

    Capt2u Capt2u

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    Interesting, I've planned a trip in August. But leaving from the San Francisco Area. What's the chance your driving through here and what would it cost?

    Steve
    #13
  14. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    PM sent! And yes I could come there.
    #14
  15. oclv454

    oclv454 Been here awhile

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    Keith, I might have someone else interested in having you bring his bike to Anchorage. He's in the Seattle area. I'll let you know when he decides. eric
    #15
  16. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    This is now confirmed. I will post up full details soon.
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  17. Detroit Steve

    Detroit Steve Homely Adventurer

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    This is a GREAT IDEA and I am subscribed to this thread.

    This year is too soon for me, but count me in to do an Alaska or PNW trip next year.


    Steve
    White Lake, MI
    #17
  18. kkodet

    kkodet Been here awhile

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    Steve - And anyone else interested as well.

    Deanne at St. Clair travel found a promotional rate through U.S. Air for the month of August. My round trip (I have to come back in the middle of the month for a few days) was $630 to Detroit. One way from Anchorage to Detroit for my wife and kids was $320 each. You can get ahold of Deanne at 810-329-7165. She has always beat the best online rates I can find.
    #18