Alaska 2021 Trip Planning; Post Covid-19...

Discussion in 'Americas' started by black 8, Apr 13, 2020.

  1. Peter640

    Peter640 Peter 640

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    Hey Murph how are you? Best get your ass down here when we can travel again! Were still pretty locked down in Oz.

    Yes we trucked from Ottawa to Whitehorse to save time as my buddy (@Ryan Carman) (who stored my bike for me as i live in Oz) was short of time. I can get some details if anyone interested or the RR is here:

    https://advrider.com/f/threads/the-big-leap-circle-to-circle.1390223/

    Happy travels!

    Peter
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  2. ZXMorty

    ZXMorty Been here awhile

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    I like the comment of 325 miles per day, I see where most riders spend the entire day is the saddle. I am planning a trip to AK this coming summer,I’ll map out your suggestions. Thanks
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  3. black 8

    black 8 motographer

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    Riders can easily do 500-600+ miles per day with the extended daylight as you head north, the downside being "drive by" tourism. It works for some riders that have limited vacation time to ride Alaska however, they end up missing what BC and YT has to offer. Those side trips off the beaten path often lead to memorable moments. Luckily I'm retired and I can take my time...

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  4. AllSeasonRider

    AllSeasonRider Wandering, maybe a little lost...

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    325 miles/day would have added almost 2 weeks to my trip. It'd have been nice, but not really possible given I want to keep my job for some reason :)
  5. HatesSnow

    HatesSnow Waiting for Summer

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    I would recommend The Destination Highways book for BC if you're looking for the best roads and views. It covers the southern half of the province (the northern half sucks for good riding roads but has some good views depending on where you are). There is a book and also a waterproof map available. It doesn't have a lot of gravel but it does have some. Mostly it will steer you away from the main hwys and onto secondary roads. The number 1 rated road in the province can be a blast but depending on the time of year can be clogged with tourists.

    http://www.destinationhighways.com/default.htm

    My biggest advice would be to avoid these like the plague...
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    Worst drivers in Canada. Sudden stops, wander all over the road, pass everything they can on straight stretches then slow way down for hills and corners or even just when they get to the front of the line, cut corners spraying gravel onto the road etc, etc. If there's one in front of you just be aware that anything can happen, if there's one behind you that's the best place for it (unless they're tailgating you).
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  6. black 8

    black 8 motographer

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    Huh... I found the book on Amazon...

    Now you've got me curious about other routes like the Sea-To-Sky Corridor instead of just the standard routes...

    Thanks for the tip...
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  7. HatesSnow

    HatesSnow Waiting for Summer

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    The sea to sky is very scenic but is a divided 4 lane hwy from North Vancouver to Whistler with low speed limits and lots of traffic (not in the same sphere as LA, of course). After Pemberton the road gets much better. The Duffey Lake road is a great ride, twisty paved two-lane. But you can also head north-west-ish out of Pemberton and take the Hurley, which is a gravel mountain pass road that leads to Gold Bridge or head north-east-ish up through Darcy and over the Highline which is a tight, sometimes one-lane, gravel road that clings to the side of a steep mountain. All options are fun in different ways and all options lead to Lillooet.
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  8. djroszina

    djroszina Long timer Supporter

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    I’m itchin’ to go. This would be my 5th time up and probably in August. No specific itinerary, just riding and hitting hot spots at my leisure. I’ll be staying here and there tent camping as I go. Some will be just overnight, some may be a few days in places like Hyder. I just like riding till the road runs out, Hyder, Tuk, Deadhorse, Homer...places like that. I’ll be on my trusty 06 BMW 650 Dakar. Putt, putt, putt..
  9. CavReconSGT

    CavReconSGT Just the right amount of evil. Supporter

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    Same here. My first time though. Riding until the road runs out. Yep. I plan on May 1 but I have questions if this will happen in 2021. I sure hope so.

    KR
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  10. AllSeasonRider

    AllSeasonRider Wandering, maybe a little lost...

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    Same.

    "How far are you going?"
    "All the way."
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  11. black 8

    black 8 motographer

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    I'm hoping that this Covid-Crap will be manageable by early next year enough to allow tourism travel through BC and the YT into Alaska... however, there is a Plan B just in case...

    I read a RR report from a military member that was being transferred from TN to AK and chose to ride. He reported that he was limited to a direct a route to his final destination while at the same time couldn't veer off too far from the ALCAN...

    Still planning for early to mid-May of 2021 for me and counting down from eight months; tick-tock-tick-tock... I was going over my gear yesterday trying to whittle down the weight while maintaining an acceptable level of comfort for 40+ days on the road.


    Debating if I should go to Prudhoe Bay or not... I know you went to Tuk last year, how was that?
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  12. AllSeasonRider

    AllSeasonRider Wandering, maybe a little lost...

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    @black 8 - Tuk was great, wish I could have spent more time. I've not gone to Prudhoe, but from all the reports and photos I've seen from both, I'm confident I made the right choice if you are only planning on doing one. For the Dalton, you'll be fighting truck traffic the whole way, and you're reward is an oil refinery, a bite to eat at a cafeteria, and limited (if any) access to the Arctic Ocean. Tuk gets you, what I'm told, a prettier ride, less truck traffic, some fun ferry crossings, and Tuk is a real village. You can ride right up to the water, and have a bite to eat at real local joint. Though, I'm told and inclined to agree, that the Dempster is a more challenging ride, especially if it's wet. I wouldn't hesitate to go back.

    That said, I'm thinking next time I go, I'll try to ride the Dalton at least as far as Atigun, and maybe camp on the north side.
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  13. black 8

    black 8 motographer

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    All true about Prudhoe Bay but there is something about that place that calls to riders (at least to me)... one of those things that lingers in the back of the mind... will I regret it years from now if I don't go???? :hmmmmm

    But on the other hand, I don't know if Tuk will open its roads to travelers due to its remoteness and out of Covid fears from locals... :dunno
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  14. AllSeasonRider

    AllSeasonRider Wandering, maybe a little lost...

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    All valid concerns. Prudhoe Bay is in Alaska, which is easier to explain to people when you tell them about your trip. 'Murican's are kinda dumb when it comes to geography, and when you say you rode to the Arctic Ocean, to a town called Tuktoyuktuk, in the Northwest Territories... they tend to stare blankly. I end up having to show them a map :lol3 Prudhoe Bay is also further North, and the furthest north you can drive to in the U.S., and that certainly matters to some people. It's also kind of a 'classic' route to do Deadhorse to Key West (or vice versa). But despite it's latitude, getting to Tuk feels more remote and further from 'civilization', with Inuvik being the exception. Again, take that all with a grain of salt as my experience with the Dalton is limited to RR here on the forum.
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  15. black 8

    black 8 motographer

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    I've thought about Tuk and it has piqued my interest but Prudhoe is calling more at this stage...

    That and I need to save something for the next trip up north in a couple of years once I get some lower 48 bucket rides done.
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  16. Mr Head

    Mr Head Adventure Hippie Supporter

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    In 2019, I'd begun planning on a ride with some buddies to the arctic and back, probably detouring on the return to take the longer way home and visit my dad. Stuff happened and didn't happen and was done wrong and had to be fixed so, none of that happened. I got one quick ride out to Colorado for the KTM rally in and back. Way too far and fast.

    I began re-planning for 2020 from here north then south, east, then south then east, then south, then west/north a bit and south. Left coast to BC, decide if I felt like the arctic, then either go for that or head across Canada gravel to somewhere and head south across the border. Depending on timing and stuff. This has distilled into up the left coast sort of wandering some north coast back ways into Oregon and some BDR riding there into Washington and more BDR to Seattle. Maybe get tires there and see some friends, then head into B.C, where I'll make the decision to either head to the Arctic or just run gravel to Kelowna and figure things out form there. Weather and how I feel will weigh in my thinking there.

    First wrench into the works was of course, COVID-19 and shutdowns and borders closed. Punting it to summer 2021, a family requirement to be either in B.C. and travel to Colorado, or be in Colorado and travel to B.C. in the middle of the summer was the second wrench into the works.

    I spent the a good bit of March, April and May clearing away around the house projects and fiddling with the motorcycle and getting rid of stuff I won't ever need again, if indeed I ever needed any of it.


    My planning is now pushed off into 2022. My momentum and enthusiasm have waned a bit since parking the bike in 2019. I don't need to drive or ride much other than travel, so a lot of fiddling on the bike has happened. I expect, I'll go through my list of maintenance again here in the dead of winter, (such as it is here) and bring some stuff forward that likely got missed.

    in 2022, I'll be 69. Right now, I'm in good health, slowly working off some of the cube fat one acquires wasting away commuting and spending long days in a cube or being squeezed out of one or another tube.
    Once things firm up for my plans, I'll be reaching out for some ride partners. I figure to camp mostly, and not ride more than a tank or so of fuel per day. Makes like more fun that way.
  17. black 8

    black 8 motographer

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    I totally get it with Murphy throwing monkey wrenches left and right these days...

    I was just getting ready for a trip out to the Sierras now that it's finally starting to get cooler out there... Then as fate would have it, I'm getting pulled in the opposite direction for a road trip to Kissimmee, FL to help my parents... I may be there for a few months helping to cope with the Covid social distancing thing. I'll be camping the entire route to limit my contact/exposure so as not to bring anything their way...

    From this I see an opportunity. Whenever I get done from helping my parents, I could ride down to Key West and start from Mile Marker 0 for the ride home, take a breather, get my gear ready, and swap bikes for the ride up to Alaska.

    It wasn't my intention but it's the cards that I've been dealt...
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  18. djroszina

    djroszina Long timer Supporter

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    My 2020 plan was to attend Sturgis on my KTM 1190 and then work my way up to Hyder, stay a few days and return home to Milwaukee. Covid closed the border...so I guess Sturgis and a loop through Wyoming would do...I left MKE and headed up to my northern WI hunting property. While there I reassessment the cost benefit of traveling to a crowded, no precautions taken area and decided to scrap the whole idea. I’ve done many back to back to back 600 to 1000 mile days over the years, but the ride home, a mere 225 miles, was just agonizingly terrible. I guess I don’t take defeat very well whether it’s from outside forces or of my own doing.

    I’m really hoping this Covid thing gets handled in the near future. One thing for sure, at least for me, is that I will be more appreciative to my opportunities for travel once this is done.
  19. Sidney

    Sidney Been here awhile

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    I'm planning the James Bay/North Road/Trans Taiga in 2021 as a warm up for a run to Tuk in 2022.

    Wish me luck,

    Sidney
  20. Ol Man

    Ol Man Long timer Supporter

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    I have been to Alaska three times, once with my wife in our motorhome towing our Jeep in 2012 and motorcycle trips in 2016 and 2018. In 2016 I left So Cal on April 15 and that was too early. Lots of stops said I was the first motorcycle of the season. It was cold, snowy and icy.......but fun in the end. The 2018 trip I left So Cal on May 15 and had a much nicer trip. I had planned to do it again this year, but covid got in the way. I plan again to leave on May 15, 2021 and at 76 I am hoping for another great trip.

    For the 2016 trip I got a motel each night. Worked fine that early in the season. For the 2018 trip it was about half motel and half camping. Will see how 2021 evolves. In 2016 I rode alone and in 2018 I rode with a friend. I plan to ride alone in 2021.
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