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Alaska in November?

Discussion in 'Americas' started by photo.moto, Oct 10, 2007.

  1. photo.moto

    photo.moto off-road n00b

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    110
    Location:
    Southern Pines, NC
    Ok, so I'm at a point in my life where I have the ability and feel the need to go a long way away for an adventure. I want to leave in November and want to do at least 10,000 miles, but don't want to have to learn spanish :D so that leaves Alaska!

    The question is, what is the weather like in Alaska in November? Yes Smartass, I know it is cold. Are the roads covered in snow and ice or is it just balls cold outside? This is my time to go, and I don't want to wait till the summer-thaw. Anyone been in November/December?

    Thanks.
    #1
  2. cycletlh

    cycletlh Slower than yesterday!

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    Oddometer:
    139
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    Stud the tires and carry chains!

    I live in N.E. Washington state elevation 2,000 ft. Snow comes anytime between Halloween and Thanksgiving. Yesterday it was 75* with a low of 48*. Today the high was supposed to be 54*. We have already had frost and the days are getting shorter. We lose about 3 mins a day, Alaska is losing 6-7 minutes a day.

    Riding late fall or early spring the weather can be very nice but you find ice in shaded places. (usually right around or in the middle of a curve)

    Proceed with caution!
    #2
  3. photo.moto

    photo.moto off-road n00b

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2007
    Oddometer:
    110
    Location:
    Southern Pines, NC
    thanks a lot cycleth! I appreciate the advice and will heed your warning. I've never spent any considerable amount of time in the northwest. I was however in Spokane for a few days May of 2006 though, and that is on my list of places to ride through whenever this trip happens - I have family there.

    Looks like I'll postpone this trip till the summer or later. :cry

    Maybe I need to start looking at a ride to Baja instead :wink:
    #3
  4. Bora20

    Bora20 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    May 6, 2007
    Oddometer:
    855
    Location:
    Kamloops, BC, CAD
    I live in Kamloops, BC and it has been 0 C here at about 5:30am every morning. I am a 2640 ft.

    There has already
    been snow in the higher elevations and further up north. Alaska has snow, don't worry.

    It isn't undoable (is that a word) but it would be very cold and slippery. Definately sidecar weather.
    #4
  5. AKDuc

    AKDuc Alaska Born Ducatisti

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2006
    Oddometer:
    6,886
    Location:
    Anchorage, Alaska
    You gotta be kid'n me. :eek1 :lol2

    Actually seeing you're in NC I guess I can't blame you for not really knowing what's the conditions are like up here. :evil I actually had my own misperceptions when I went to FL one winter. While some come to Alaska expecting to see snow and igloos, I (born and raised up here) went to FL expecting to see nothin but beaches and bikinis! :D Yeah baby! :evil Man was I bummed when I experience cold humidiy for the first time in my life AND it even snowed in Tallahassee while I was there! :huh Brrr.

    Anyway, back to your wanting to come up in Nov. Maybe you could make it but unless you're really really lucky you probably wouldn't. I'm one of the few who rode around on a studded tire motorcycle last winter. Another was akphotog. Here a link to a nice report with wonderful photos he wrote up a year and week ago : http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?p=3530859#post3530859

    And here's a link to more ride reports if you'd like more pics of ridin in the winter. Fun! I'm the 5th post down and links to more of akphotog's wonderful threads and photos can be found in the 7th post down: http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=197053

    Take care, good buddy. And know that ridin Deal's Gap on my 996 was one of MY best rides EVER! :thumb Mark H.
    #5
  6. One Eye Mike

    One Eye Mike Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2007
    Oddometer:
    659
    Location:
    Wasilla, Alaska
    We had snow 4 hours North of Anchorage 3 weeks ago.
    Good Luck!!!!!!!!!!!
    #6
  7. cycletlh

    cycletlh Slower than yesterday!

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2006
    Oddometer:
    139
    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    Baja is a must do in my opinion. Have been twice. Was there last November the week prior to and of the Baja 1,000. Weather was awsome, not even a trace of snow. Saving to do again.

    Only went about 250 miles south on the gulf side. Gracias means thanks, Alto means stop. That is about the extent of my Spanish. Not really necessary IMO. Did not even exchange money. A peso is equal to a dime, 10 pesos is a buck. Simple enough for a dumb gringo like me.:D

    Get gas every chance you can! Looking forward to a trip report and when you get to Spokane look me up.
    #7
  8. See-Double-You

    See-Double-You Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    Oddometer:
    2,174
    Location:
    Anchorage, AK
    Head South young man. Turn North in about five months, or when you see the birds start to migrate. Seriously; there's no riding to be had up here, unless you're quite crazy. Riding the Alcan in the winter on a MC -- insane.

    Not saying it can't be done, just saying it's not the smartest thing in the world to do.
    #8
  9. Osprey!

    Osprey! a.k.a. Opie Supporter

    Joined:
    May 28, 2007
    Oddometer:
    6,407
    Location:
    Boulder, CO
    Given riding that some folks do around here, I would take the warning and rethink speaking Spanish. Seriously.

    While theoretically feasible, what you'd be dealing with sounds downright dangerous if not massively unpleasant.

    If you seriously have an issue with Spanish and need to go now, maybe you should try an adventure in Australia or New Zealand. It's now the end of winter/early spring in that part of the world.
    #9
  10. BUBB

    BUBB lynch not Zimmerman

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2003
    Oddometer:
    20,675
    Location:
    I'm here because I'm not all there.
    Laird Hot Springs a couple of weeks ago. (end of september)
    [​IMG]

    down the road
    [​IMG]
    #10
  11. BUBB

    BUBB lynch not Zimmerman

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2003
    Oddometer:
    20,675
    Location:
    I'm here because I'm not all there.
    lots of wildlife
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    he's pointing to where the road cuts up the mountain
    [​IMG]

    off the Alcan - down around Banff
    [​IMG]
    #11
  12. charliemik

    charliemik Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2007
    Oddometer:
    420
    Location:
    Flagstaff AZ
    Check out the Baja thread that's currently staying near the top of the list on this forum. Lots of good info. I've done AK once, in August, and Baja several times. Both are a must-do IMHO.
    #12
  13. FotoTEX

    FotoTEX Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2007
    Oddometer:
    3,009
    Location:
    Granbury Texas
    Alaska Rides this time of year are insane. You can freeze your butt off in June,July, August. This time of year is alot worse. You have waited too long this year for an attempt. Try summer, it will be alot more enjoyable. It is too nice a ride to not do right time of year. I did it this early June and alot of rain but very do-able. Listen to the Alaska based posters, they know best about Alaska weather.
    #13