tips for preparing winger for alaska?

Discussion in 'Americas' started by motoxxman, Jun 20, 2010.

  1. motoxxman

    motoxxman Adventurer

    Dec 20, 2008
    Chicago, Il
    hello, and i know i know yet another alaska question,,,argggg.....

    So i am in the initial (baby step) stages of thinking about maybe trying to kind of hoping (that enough maybe's for ya ! haha) going from Seattle to Fairbanks (arctic circle) and back. So i figured first off i would ask about any advice other cruiser type bikers would have for preparing my 85 goldwing for this trip. Motor wise i am sound, i am looking more for little things i should think about like headlight guard, or things like that (without breaking the bank of course). I will be riding 2-up. I figure most of the road is not an issue, the two parts i am concerned about are the top of the world highway, and the stint from Fairbanks to the circle and back. How concerned should i be about safety of bike and person.

    And second question would be, unfortunately if this is going to happen for me this year, the only time frame i could do it in would be august 28th- sept 12th. Is weather going to hose me that late in the season? And is that enough time to not just get there and back, but maybe actually enjoy a few bits of seeing Alaska?

    thanks all for any advice.....
  2. Lance Hardwud

    Lance Hardwud Long timer

    Aug 31, 2006
    Hinckley/Wheaton Illinois
    there was a ride report awhile back by Sly-on-2 that you should search for and read...he was on a oldwing for a long time touring Alaska.
  3. Alcan Rider

    Alcan Rider Frozen Fossil

    Sep 29, 2003
    Over the rear wheel
    First and foremost, if you don't already have it, get some two-up experience on gravel roads close to home. From what I've seen of crashes on gravel up here, it's riders who panic when the bike does things they aren't used to, and do the opposite of what they should be doing to ride safely.

    As for Top of the World - looks like it might have some new gravel on it this summer, which could alleviate some of the slickness that happens whenever it rains up there. But again, you will want to be familiar with how your bike handles on gravel.

    While that is a bit later than most riders who come up try to make it, there is still a good chance you can get in some good touring - and get to see fall colors that most touring riders miss. With luck, you might even get to see the Northern Lights. By that time of year most of the construction along the way is being wrapped up and you will have less of that to contend with than earlier riders.

    Best bet would be to head up to Fairbanks first unless rain is being reported there. Between Fairbanks and the Circle only 73 miles is gravel, the rest is paved. You will usually have at least one stretch of the gravel that is being watered and graded. Not fun, but hundreds of motorcycles make it through that stuff every year.