MT to AK need guidance

Discussion in 'Americas' started by runnin4melife, Oct 5, 2012.

  1. runnin4melife

    runnin4melife Been here awhile

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    :freaky Who doesn't like to drink, well a lot of people but I don't hang out with them! This is great information. Next week I have off and plan on reading the blog in its entirety, as well as do so many other things (like reassemble my bike).
    #21
  2. LuluOfDenver

    LuluOfDenver The peanut gallery.

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    #22
  3. runnin4melife

    runnin4melife Been here awhile

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    Thank you so much for this. I was planning on doing a little bit of camping as well as hotels etc... I have spent the better part of this fall working on my bike, I have done a lot of modifications in preparation for this trip (and other things). I have to do everything now as I will not have much prep time before I set out (besides maintenance etc..).
    #23
  4. FLARider1

    FLARider1 Long timer

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    Best thing you can do for your planning and start searching the ride reports and read them!!! The people that chime in on the reports provide invaluable information. In 2011 I did Key West to Prudhoe Bay and back to Key West, 14866 miles in 34 days, a solo trip and really my first long adventure. I had an event free trip!! I learned all I needed from this forum and mostly from the ride reports. The do's, the don'ts, the must see, the 'skip this' is all there. Once you have YOUR trip basically planned then start asking specific questions. AKDuc, AKBob, AKTracs, ALCANRIDER, Fite, The Dick, are all guys that hang out on the AK regional forum. They are a wealth of information and advice and willing to help.......might even ride with you if the timing is right. I would spend hours everyday on here just reading up on tips for the ride.....asking questions where needed. As you probably already know this forum is the best for planning successful adventures.

    Two big pieces of advice I learned.....pack everything that you think you need, then sort through that and get rid of about half of it........most the crap you think you might need you wont and its just weight and bullshit that you will get tired of lugging around. With the exception of my Gerbing heated jacket and my anti-bear storage kit for food etc..., I used everything I took with me. Well, not many of the tools because the only thing I had to fix was a lightbulb changeout. Second is to make sure you lay out a trip plan, where you want to be each day. Its easy to get caught up in the surroundings and not realize how much time has gone by. I was on the bike 12-14 hours a day. Sometimes I covered 200 miles, sometimes I covered 5-600 miles, but each day I made the planned destination and I was able to do everything I wanted to do. I was limited to 4 weeks vacation, so I went to KW over the weekend, went back home, worked 3 days and then left for the northland. I had to stick with the trip plan to make it work. Its all grand and wonderous to run with no plan, but bottom line, with a fixed time frame comes a fixed schedule!!! Other than that.........I second the whole plan, bike, attitude and camera philosophy!!!!

    The Heidenau K-60s were great in the slushy mud. I didn't get as many miles out of them as I had hope, but many people do. They for sure will give 1000-1500 more miles than TKC-80s. They grip fine in what you run into up there, but aren't as squirrely on the blacktop as TKC-80s. I would recommend them for sure. Save yourself the hassle and buy from Adventure Cycle Works in Fairbanks. They will hold the tires until you get there and provide 24/7 garage support to install. I ran Tourances from home to Fairbanks, which include a run up the Cassier Highway. I stayed on K-60s until Missoula, MT. I probably could have made it home, but with 2700 miles left of asphalt on a loaded down bike with a record heat wave between me and home, I chose to go back to a new set of Tourances for the last leg home

    I would consider myself still a noob in the adv world, but I have learned alot on the 3 years I have owned my GSA, been on several successful adventures. So I did a bunch of research, and gear buying to have a fun trip. Now I am pretty much just able to pack and go....and heading back to AK in 2014. So if you want a noobs version of what to do and not do....shoot me a pm and we can talk more in detail.

    Safe rides and have fun planning the adventure, it was half the fun of the whole trip.
    #24
  5. runnin4melife

    runnin4melife Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the advice! I had a great conversation with an inmate over the phone tonight, he has done quite a few trips up there and has given invaluable route information and a true adventure to go on, as well as a bunch of good pointers. :evil

    Sadly I have a limited amount of time to wade through ride reports but I think I already have a leg up on everything after my nearly 2hr telephone call. Now I have to plan everything.
    #25
  6. LuluOfDenver

    LuluOfDenver The peanut gallery.

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  7. runnin4melife

    runnin4melife Been here awhile

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    I will have to see how these line up, I definitely like to drink a good beer! The issue is that if I am not staying at the location I will be after I have a beer (1 = 2 = 3 = 4.... lack of self control haha). I will be taking a slightly different route but will at one point be cruising by the yukon brewery as well as Haines.

    So much planning to do!
    #27
  8. thetourist

    thetourist Just passing thru

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    I've been to AK several times. It is mostly just a long road trip. Unless you go sideways off the main routes the roads are good.

    Distance is the real factor. The towns, mostly small, are far apart. Many spots, on the map, are just gas stops with maybe an eatery and a couple of rooms.

    This makes breakdowns a long expensive process. I had an alternator failure. 3 days and $300. Motel was $100 per night. This was in one of the bigger towns.

    I saw a guy stalled with a broken electronic distributor. He had been waiting a week for parts to come by bus.

    So have a plan b.

    Some great food along the way. Lots of homemade baked goods at mom and pop service stations. Pecan Tarts at the Rancheria. Fresh Halibut at Haines Jnct service station. Giant cinnamon rolls at Braeburn and Tetsa/tetsla, something like that.

    It is a great road trip.
    #28
  9. LuluOfDenver

    LuluOfDenver The peanut gallery.

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    Hahahaha! You can pick up 6 packs to take along with you at Yukon, thereby drinking where you stop for the night. Haines might be tricky if you're not staying the night. But, they have a law that breweries can only serve something like a max of 32oz. Kind of handy to have a cut off point when you're on two wheels (and have that lack of self-control :lol3). The other thing about the Haines brewery is that they close about an hour after the pizza place opens. If you hit it just right, you taste there, then walk down to the restaurant for dinner. If you camp in Haines, though, it is close to a ten mile trip to either campground.

    I hope you'll post your route when you get the planning underway. The planning part is fun, but the riding part is better!
    :clap:clap:clap
    #29
  10. runnin4melife

    runnin4melife Been here awhile

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    Just downloaded the route software and will be making sense of the hand written notes I made the other night. I have a lot of "off the beaten path" roads so it will be a lot of fun. I am avoiding the mainstream hubs except for a view and will be going mostly on gravel. I figure an adventure is only an adventure if you have to deal with hardships and the highway is no fun.

    Back up plans such as a continuation of my BMW roadside service, and a secondary unlimited mileage road side service was already a great contingency proposed to me. I will be solo so I have my EPIRB, not sure about getting a spot, but I might. As far as communications go I have not researched that at all.
    #30