QUESTIONS ON AN ALASKA TRIP?

Discussion in 'Americas' started by stacyj, Oct 31, 2017.

  1. HeidiHo

    HeidiHo Old, Bold, Still Riding

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    They are all married......and have very large families.
    #41
  2. JeepDawg

    JeepDawg Long timer

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    Don't quit the day job HH :thumb
    #42
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  3. Elad

    Elad What oil is best in my motorbike?

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    Good advice above, I did a solo trip from Nashville Tn to 50 miles north of Cold foot last june/july a 30 day trip

    Border crossing into canada
    1. Magnetic Tank bag (used it like a man purse) contained passport, cell phone, wallet with Canadian insurance card, Orange can of bear spray, camping knife.
    2. Pull to window passport laying out and ready they will ask for it immediately I turned my bike off at the window.

    The questions they will probably ask
    A. Do you own any guns, I answered yes
    B. Do you have any guns with you, I answered no I stopped in Montana and sent it home by FedEx
    C. Do you have any weapons, I answered no
    D. Do you have any mace, I answered no
    E. Do you have any knives, I answered yes a camping knife in my tank bag
    F. Do you have anything Sharp or used for defense or alcohol on the motorcycle, I said yes I have bear spray and a camping hatchet on the motorcycle no alcohol
    G. Describe your bear spray and where is it, orange larger than a soda can in my tank bag
    H. Show me you bear spray, I started unzipping my tank bag the agent said I see it it's fine
    I. Where is the hatchet, on top of my left saddlebag
    J. What is your destination, alaska
    K. How long will you be in Canada, 6 days

    I was on my way in less than 5 minutes

    Just be honest and prepared to spend a few houre at the border and if it's faster then great, but if it takes a while you are not anxious.

    I stopped at the first bank I saw and got 300$ Canadian cash from a ATM call and tell your bank /credit card compactor are traveling to Canada. Get a credit card with the chip it's the only way you can purchase gas from allot of stations from the pump.

    When I crossed the border my cell phone stopped working Canada has it's own providers I guess. I just used a WiFi connection when available, to call and text on a free walkie talkie app called zello. You can purchase a prepaid cell at any canadian Wal-Mart that will work fine if you feel the need.

    I camped 75% of the time my camping gear,
    Hammock and tarp with built in bug net ( i never encountered a place I couldn't hang it just be creative)
    0 degree sleeping bag with waterproof bivouac cover
    Poly pad for under insulation or ground sleeping if I needed it
    I carried my 30$ 3 person Wal-Mart tent I used to camp with before I discovered the hammock

    Cooking
    My stove is a 8$ Amazon backpacking stove with igniter and 1 small can of the Coleman butane gas(it made at least 40 cups of coffe and 15 meals before it ran out)
    For heating water I used a 20$ Colman pot that includes 2 cups. I removed 1 of the cups my stove fits in the pot with the other cup, spoon and a couple single packets of freeze dried Folgers coffee it's 10cents a packet at my grocery store and they are sealed so no smell= less bear attractive

    I carried mountain house meals if you haven't tried them go to Wal-Mart and get biscuits and gravy, lasagna and a breakfast egg bacon meal. Read the directions and enjoy.

    I carried a spoon from the kitchen in my pot nothing fancy needed.
    carried 5 meals and when I ran out just went to Wal-Mart and refilled my supply
    I carried a couple Apple's and bananas
    Camel back with water available to drink while riding you will get dehydrated if you dont

    Sandles if you wear them are perfect they can be stored out of your bags with a bungee and wetness does not matter.

    Clothes I carried, 2 pair of shorts a pair of jogging pants, 2 golf shirts, 3 t shirts, extra set of cycle gear heat out under garments, 2 pair underwear and 8 pairs of regular thickness wool army socks, very thin neoprene cold weather top and bottom.

    Tool kits are specific to your skills bike here is mine

    Motion pro tire bead breakers/ tire spoons 10 inch crescent wrench, Allen's as needed extra front tube, electric tape, 8,10,12, 14mm 1/4 inch sockets and a 1/4 breaker bar, Zip ties small bicycle pump. Put a valve stem core remover cap on your rear tire valve stem.

    I wish I didn't carry the tent I never used it.

    It was 106 degrees in Montana wear a jacket that allows air flow with a built in waterproof liner and cold weather liner. I wore a 59$ cycle gear jacket and it worked perfect for me. My riding pants are cycle gear adv pants zip in insulation and wet weather liner.

    I wear forma adventure boots. 12 hours of rain riding @40 degrees 2 pair wool socks and my feet were dry!!
    I carry rubber medical gloves for rain put them on dry hands and put gloves on over them guaranteed dry hands.

    I took a Amazon 15$ fold up camping chair and made it a point to sit and relax every morning and afternoon and just listen to my surroundings.

    I stayed at a big tee golf course rv park restaurant and hotel in southern Canada it was 40$ Canadian a night.

    Super 8 in ft Nelson has a great hot tub!! 65$ a night really nice folks breakfast and doors open to the bike!

    I can't remember the name of it but there was a large steel bridge and just after a gas station hotel restaurant bar and rv park that place was 40$ a night nice rooms.

    Tok alaska take the time and stay at Thompson's eagle claw resort I rented a ambulance for the night sat in the steam room and had a hot ladle self poured shower bath? AMAZING experience for 20$

    I had 0 itinerary just places i wanted to see and i went until I was ready to stop look eat or sleep. My gear weighed 28lbs including food clothes and everything except my camel back. Eat at the turtle club in fox alaska you will like it. I rode loads of dirt gravel some days i just went north and west for the first couple hours before looking at a map or gps. I stopped every night before dark and set up camp. 20170630_140348.jpg 20170703_181254.jpg






    I hope I helped 20170623_181214.jpg
    #43
  4. Bigsmokindaddy

    Bigsmokindaddy Adventurer

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    I agree with getting a 3 person tent. I have spent the last year moto camping with a 2-person, and there is just not enough room.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    #44
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  5. stacyj

    stacyj Adventurer

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    Thanks for the info guys, the mosquitoes i can deal with got few cans of really good stuff not sure what it is a friend of mine gave them to me years ago when he was in the air force it was used to spray in airplanes that fly back to the us to kill insects one little spray on the tent and nothing comes around im sure its been banned by now ,as for crossing the border have had lots of emails good and bad experiences not sure what i going to do yet hate to miss canada but considering taking the ferry from billingham wa to haines ak just a mere 59 1/2 hr ride.
    #45
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  6. HeidiHo

    HeidiHo Old, Bold, Still Riding

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    @stacyj , that is "malathion", and it does indeed kill mosquitoes. And, the town for the ferry is "Bellingham", Washington...not Billingham. :-)

    Look, you should have NO problems at all crossing the border into Canada. I do it several times a year, for many years, and all I ever have to show is my "enhanced" drivers license, and answer a very few quick questions. Once up at the border agents booth, it usually takes 10 seconds, and you are through.
    #46
  7. stacyj

    stacyj Adventurer

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    ok im convinced i will be leaving colorado looks like the border i will be crossing is around sweetgrass montana
    #47
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  8. Elad

    Elad What oil is best in my motorbike?

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    I forgot to mention I washed my clothes in a mosquito repellent before leaving. There is a couple dealers in alaska. However there is a really nice fellow in fairbanks who does oil and tire changes at his house for a fair price. Dan is his name a simple search on here alaska dan will find him. He helped me after I was ran off the road north of coldfoot.
    #48
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  9. stacyj

    stacyj Adventurer

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    Yes I have seen him on several videos on here thanks
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  10. trailer Rails

    trailer Rails Washes hands before going to the bathroom

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    Be careful where you spray that, some stuff will dissolve plastic
    #50
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  11. Motopsychoman

    Motopsychoman Not a total poseur

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    Malathion is safe on plastics. DEET is not.
    I followed this thread for a bit: http://advrider.com/index.php?threads/mosquito-deterents-repelants.1232141/
    I now subscribe to the Permethrin soaked clothes with Picaridin on the face and hands scheme. Always long sleeves and long pants.

    Note: always try a sample on some exposed skin like a forearm before you dive in. Make sure you aren't sensitive to a particular chemical.
    #51
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  12. pnw

    pnw Long timer

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    I didn't have a mosquito problem when I did my limited Alaska trip in August, they must be more active earlier in the spring/summer. I took the ferry to Haines with a one night stop in Juneau and rode south to Stewart/Hyder then across to Banff, down to 3 and 20 back to Bellingham. I did pre-treat my clothing, helmet liner, sleeping bag and tent with permethrin ( I mixed it myself to 1% concentration rather than using the Sawyer 0.5%) which is supposed to be effective for several washings and I used picaridin spray a few times which I like better than DEET. Any mosquitoes I did see hovered and didn't land, I don't recall a bite. Maybe I'll be able to give it another go next summer.
    #52
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  13. Motopsychoman

    Motopsychoman Not a total poseur

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    Worst mosquitos I have ever seen was at Kathleen Lake in the Yukon. Had to break camp wearing my riding suit, helmet, gloves and a scarf around the bottom of the helmet. That was 31 years ago.
    Early season is usually worse for mosquitos, late season is usually worse for black flies. At least that is what I've been told.

    I spent 7 days in a canoe in Quetico a number of years back. Mosquitos were horrible after dark. But nowhere near as bad as I remember Kathleen Lake being.
    #53
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  14. jonz

    jonz Miles are my mantra

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    I went caribou and duck hunting in and about King Salmon, AK in September. The black flies were wicked. I don't even remember any mosquitoes though there could have been some.
    #54
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  15. Nanuq

    Nanuq Aventurer by Trade

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    That’s a pretty mellow crossing point. I’ve crossed there several times while doing Iron Butt rides from Littleton, Colorado to Fort Saint Johns, B.C. My fastest that distance was about 34 hours. Just shy of 1800 miles. Got to love it! Embrace the grit! Honestly, though I’ve always crossed there around midnight, so I can’t speak for other times of the day.
    #55
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  16. stacyj

    stacyj Adventurer

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    Thanks that's good to know going to leave okla 1st of May going to do the TAT from Tennessee to Colorado stay their about 2 weeks then head north going to be a good summer
    #56
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  17. FLARider1

    FLARider1 Long timer

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    Like already said, don't skip Canada, its an easy crossing. I've gone up to AK twice and to Newfoundland, easy at each end of the country.

    Pay heed to the mosquitoes, I live in south Florida, the swamps of the Everglades is my neighbor, we don't hold a candle to the bugs in AK and the Yukon!! Get a net big enough to go over your helmet, that way when you are stopped in the middle of nowhere for construction you can open your visor, cuz you won't be able to take your helmet off!! REI sells a good one. Also, consider getting the Deep Woods repellent wipes vice using a spray. Better coverage on your skin because you wipe it on and you can get your face and neck better. I carry both and use both. But like someone mentioned, bug spray will melt plastics and remove things you may not want removed.

    As far as your border crossing, I very HIGHLY recommend you consider going north of Sandpoint, ID to the crossing at Port Hill, ID. Small very laid back crossing and it sets you up to take an amazing route north. Follow 3A to 31 (ferry crossing) up to 23 (ferry crossing) up to Canada 1 through Revelstoke and Golden. Around Golden you cut over to the Ice Fields Parkway just below Lake Louise and head north to Jasper. From Jasper you run the Yellowtrail to Kitwanga and take 37 up the Cassier Highway with a side trip to Hyder. This will put you on the ALCAN at Watson Lake. Trust me, you won't be disappointed by running along the Kootenay, the Ice Fields Parkway and the Cassier.

    I sent you a PM. For my second trip in 2016 I was suppose to have some newbies heading north.......not that I was all that experienced......so I put together a planning document for them, I can share it with you, they found it very useful. Many of the things you are asking about are all included.......I can send my trip plan also, not a big fan of a set plan, but when you are trying to cover 15,000 miles in 4 weeks of vacation, I was doing Key West to Prudhoe Bay and Back to Key West, you have to have a plan to mostly stick to or you will run out of time before you know it.
    #57
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  18. stacyj

    stacyj Adventurer

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    thanks for the info FLArider i will check out the border crossing your talking about , i will check out the route on my map sounds like a good one, its going to be an interesting summer can't wait going to be on my XR for 2 weeks doing 1/2 of the TAT and 5 or 6 weeks on my 1200 gsa to alaska
    #58
  19. ALinUTAH

    ALinUTAH Been here awhile

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    On my 2015 trip, we crossed the border at Creston, back and forth from Stewart to Hyder several times, back into AK on TOW, again into Canada on the Alaska Highway, and back into AK to get to Haines. Always had the questions about guns, bear spray and alcohol. At the first crossing she asked me about my police record from 30 years ago. One of the crossings from Hyder back to Stewart where we were camped, we got into a lengthy discussion about my occupation and GMOs. It was after midnight and I don't know if she was really interested or if she was testing whether I was Hyderized.

    I definitely recommend a head net. Much easier to throw that on if you want to sit around. I was there the month of June and camped a lot. In BC the skeeters came out in the evening but weren't so bad you couldn't deal with it by staying out in the open where there was a breeze. Once I got into the Yukon on the Campbell they made it hard to enjoy myself. And up north on the Dempster they were absolutely horrific. Which is too bad because I would have liked to spend more time north of the arctic circle. What's weird is a couple places were totally devoid of skeeters: Boya Lake in BC and Eagle, AK.

    I haven't read thru the entire thread, but you probably know that things are expensive. I could always find a room at the spur of the moment when I wanted one, but they were usually around $150.

    I highly recommend the ferry in one direction, from Haines to Bellingham. After a month on the bike it was nice to just sit on the deck and drink coffee and watch the whales for a few days.
    #59
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  20. ALinUTAH

    ALinUTAH Been here awhile

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    One more thing regarding skeeters. A lot of the provincial campgrounds have screened in pavilions where you can get some relief, do your cooking and sit around. I even saw people camped in there sometimes.

    You will meet lots of other solo riders if you are just a little bit sociable. I started the trip with one guy, we parted ways about half way thru, and ended up finishing the trip with a stranger I met in Dawson. We have become good friends and ride together often now.
    #60
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