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jacketsbum

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Posted: 07/10/19 02:37am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

In Wisconsin on way back home. Traveled over 11400 miles so far. Steer clear of Tok cut off between Tok and Glennallen. Use rt 4 between Delta Junction and Glennallen. Tok cut off is in bad shape (frost heaves) and construction. Broke a spring and shackle there. Saw another guy who broke an axle. Long delays there also.


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MORSNOW

Eagle River, AK

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Posted: 07/10/19 07:44pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

PartyOf Five wrote:

Slowly rolling that way, will need to spend an extra day in Calgary as the fridge stopped working, and send to bed unrelated to the right side electric not working. How's the heat? Heard it's nicer here for a change.


The heat is finally gone as of today in southcentral AK, 20 degree drop from two days ago. 62 degrees right now in Eagle River (5:30pm) with 5 more hours of daylight left today.


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Kayteg1

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Posted: 07/14/19 03:34pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

1/2 of day from Anchorage, but settle on forest campground. Any recommendation for campground in Anchorage? Google is not showing much of good choices.
How can you stay away from Tok? That is the only route you can drive and actually roads in the area are way better, than those closer to the border.





MORSNOW

Eagle River, AK

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Posted: 07/14/19 06:36pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Kayteg1 wrote:

1/2 of day from Anchorage, but settle on forest campground. Any recommendation for campground in Anchorage? Google is not showing much of good choices.
How can you stay away from Tok? That is the only route you can drive and actually roads in the area are way better, than those closer to the border.


Kayteg, just before Anchorage is the Eagle River campground, take the Eagle River Loop/Hiland Road exit (3rd Eagle River exit after you cross the river and climb back uphill), cross back over the highway and take an immediate left on VFW Road, the campground access road will be on your right. Its a Chugach National Forrest campground without hookups but right on the river, beautiful. Eagle River is about 10 miles from downtown Anchorage and has a Safeway grocery
There are 3 dump stations in Eagle River too (Chevron, Tesoro, & Fred Meyer gas stations).

The three "camp grounds" in Anchorage are all kind of sketchy.

South of Anchorage about 15 Miles is Bird Creek campground, also no hookups but located on the Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet. One gas station right across the highway.

AKsilvereagle

North Pole, Alaska

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Posted: 07/14/19 10:31pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

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In Wisconsin on way back home. Traveled over 11400 miles so far. Steer clear of Tok cut off between Tok and Glennallen. Use rt 4 between Delta Junction and Glennallen. Tok cut off is in bad shape (frost heaves) and construction. Broke a spring and shackle there. Saw another guy who broke an axle. Long delays there also.



Unfortunately here in the far north, construction and frost heaves have been a way of life since roads were developed.

I cannot stress enough the fact when I post here or tell other people about commuting on buckled up roads or frost heaves to SLOW DOWN OR DRIVE TO A CRAWL IF NEEDED or else significant damage to equipment, suspension parts, and axles bending or breaking will result !


To give a prime perspective on a much similar conditioned route when I travelled the notorious 85 mile stretch of Destruction Bay YT thru White River YT on the Alaska Highway over the years - these are the driving times I posted according to my travel logs in my old 1970 Ford F250 camper rig :

Year - Total Time - Average MPH

1998 ....3 hr 46 min....22.56 MPH
2008 ....2 hr 44 min....31.09 MPH
2009 ....2 hr 50 min....30.00 MPH
2010 ....3 hr 07 min....27.27 MPH
2011 ....2 hr 41 min....31.67 MPH
2012 ....3 hr 32 min....24.05 MPH
2013 ....2 hr 39 min....32.07 MPH
2014 ....2 hr 55 min....29.14 MPH
2015 ....2 hr 53 min....29.48 MPH
2016 ....3 hr 36 min....23.61 MPH

Now haulin' the camper on my old 1975 Ford F250 rig :

2017 ....1 hr 54 min....44.73 MPH
2018 ....1 hr 41 min....50.49 MPH

During 2016 and 2017, the Yukon DOT Road Maintenance had worked on the Koidern-Donjec corridors of the Alaska Highway and significantly improved the roadway along this stretch which was the best I ever seen it during 2017 and 2018 since the first time I driven it in 1985, however it will be short lived as this stretch will buckle up again within a year or two.

As you see the incremental travel times I logged over the years are different, as there were stretches of this 85 mile area that the road surfaces and frost heaves were so bad, I had to drive thru some portions moving between 2 MPH to 10 MPH in many spots.

Regardless, I NEVER had a single mishap on bent, broken spring, shackle, or axle issues in my 1970 Ford F250 rig that I exclusively used as a camper hauler from 1996 thru 2016.....

That covered over 3600 miles of estimated unpaved road surfaces....

Crossed well north of the Arctic Circle while sections of the Dalton Highway were very rough....

Estimated covering over 70 percent of the 'connecting' Alaska road system minus various city and village side streets....

Driven thru many road construction zones and pilot car escorts to count....

Driven Top of the World Highway to Dawson seven times and the Taylor Highway 8 times between 1998 and 2016 in my camper rig....

Driven a 5060 mile round trip from Fairbanks AK to Yellowknife NWT and back in 2008 with unpaved road and rough surfaced sidetrips in between....

....and countless western Canada trips on a yearly basis since 2008.

I driven the Tok Cutoff route in my camper in 1997 and it was pretty horrendous with frost heaves then, took me two days taking my time thru there as I overnighted on Nabesna Road and overnighted in Gakona the following day taking my sweet time to Anchorage.

Logged 45,951 total miles with my camper on my 1970 F250 rig, and the GVWR was overweight between 200 and 600 lbs., while the front axle was 300 lbs. overweight from 2008 thru 2016.....All on Alaska and western Canada roadways with countless frost heaves and buckled road surfaces in between without a bent or broken mishap !!!!!.

Although I had to retire the 1970 F250 truck of mine from being a full time camper hauler because of the replacement cab mounts welded in 2010 were not as durable as the factory ones - only lasted six years as I only had 80 percent rust free floorboard left and the steering column started taking a toll on the heavier front end with the cabover camper weight - now it is an everyday driver starting in 2017 with the extra weight off the truck and is just fine.

I'm sorry but whenever someone experiences equipment damage to suspension or axles - they were still driving too fast for road conditions - it is all on the driver.


If the road is declared open, it is drivable....just slow down or waaaay down if the road surface is worse like I always done and you will avoid damage.

Unless one wants to be in a hurry - then avoid a certain route and go the long way around if that's an option.


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tony lee

Dallas TX to AK via Niagara Falls and Dempster Hwy

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Posted: 07/15/19 01:13am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Kayteg1 wrote:

1/2 of day from Anchorage, but settle on forest campground. Any recommendation for campground in Anchorage? Google is not showing much of good choices.
How can you stay away from Tok? That is the only route you can drive and actually roads in the area are way better, than those closer to the border.


iOverlander.com available online or as a free app is a very good camping resource for all northern regions (and for a lot of the rest of the world too for the more adventurous)

"good choices" is in the opinion of the camper and often it comes down to beggars not having the luxury of a lot of choice


Tony
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PartyOf Five

Wheaton, IL

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Posted: 07/15/19 10:30am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

The road up from Hinton to Grande Cache will exercise your engine and brakes- plenty of passing lanes though so take it slow if you're coming this way. Lots of gas equipment and associated construction but the road is open and well paved.

The tourism office in Grande Cache is very helpful, and they were also right about gas prices: it is a few cents higher in BC compared to AB. Spend some time in the visitor center.

We topped up in Grand Prairie, and also enjoyed a nice Mediterranean meal at Tito's.

Dawson Creek is the last large town but St. John's also has a Walmart. DC has a nice self serve car wash where you pay by the minute and they're very reasonable and honest. The visitor center there has lots of information and a nice history museum attached for just a few dollars admission. There's a nice walker friendly downtown area nearby.

The road is newly paved partway from St John's to Pink Mountain, though in the evenings there's heavy fog in the valleys with just a few feet of visibly. We were going 30mph in places- but had beautiful sunset views. No large animals but plenty of signs. Plenty of heavy trucks and gas production.

Let's see what today brings.


Da Moose - 2001 Dutchman 31' on E450

HollardawgUSMC

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Posted: 07/15/19 10:57am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

AKsilvereagle wrote:

Quote:

In Wisconsin on way back home. Traveled over 11400 miles so far. Steer clear of Tok cut off between Tok and Glennallen. Use rt 4 between Delta Junction and Glennallen. Tok cut off is in bad shape (frost heaves) and construction. Broke a spring and shackle there. Saw another guy who broke an axle. Long delays there also.



Unfortunately here in the far north, construction and frost heaves have been a way of life since roads were developed.

I cannot stress enough the fact when I post here or tell other people about commuting on buckled up roads or frost heaves to SLOW DOWN OR DRIVE TO A CRAWL IF NEEDED or else significant damage to equipment, suspension parts, and axles bending or breaking will result !


To give a prime perspective on a much similar conditioned route when I travelled the notorious 85 mile stretch of Destruction Bay YT thru White River YT on the Alaska Highway over the years - these are the driving times I posted according to my travel logs in my old 1970 Ford F250 camper rig :

Year - Total Time - Average MPH

1998 ....3 hr 46 min....22.56 MPH
2008 ....2 hr 44 min....31.09 MPH
2009 ....2 hr 50 min....30.00 MPH
2010 ....3 hr 07 min....27.27 MPH
2011 ....2 hr 41 min....31.67 MPH
2012 ....3 hr 32 min....24.05 MPH
2013 ....2 hr 39 min....32.07 MPH
2014 ....2 hr 55 min....29.14 MPH
2015 ....2 hr 53 min....29.48 MPH
2016 ....3 hr 36 min....23.61 MPH

Now haulin' the camper on my old 1975 Ford F250 rig :

2017 ....1 hr 54 min....44.73 MPH
2018 ....1 hr 41 min....50.49 MPH

During 2016 and 2017, the Yukon DOT Road Maintenance had worked on the Koidern-Donjec corridors of the Alaska Highway and significantly improved the roadway along this stretch which was the best I ever seen it during 2017 and 2018 since the first time I driven it in 1985, however it will be short lived as this stretch will buckle up again within a year or two.

As you see the incremental travel times I logged over the years are different, as there were stretches of this 85 mile area that the road surfaces and frost heaves were so bad, I had to drive thru some portions moving between 2 MPH to 10 MPH in many spots.

Regardless, I NEVER had a single mishap on bent, broken spring, shackle, or axle issues in my 1970 Ford F250 rig that I exclusively used as a camper hauler from 1996 thru 2016.....

That covered over 3600 miles of estimated unpaved road surfaces....

Crossed well north of the Arctic Circle while sections of the Dalton Highway were very rough....

Estimated covering over 70 percent of the 'connecting' Alaska road system minus various city and village side streets....

Driven thru many road construction zones and pilot car escorts to count....

Driven Top of the World Highway to Dawson seven times and the Taylor Highway 8 times between 1998 and 2016 in my camper rig....

Driven a 5060 mile round trip from Fairbanks AK to Yellowknife NWT and back in 2008 with unpaved road and rough surfaced sidetrips in between....

....and countless western Canada trips on a yearly basis since 2008.

I driven the Tok Cutoff route in my camper in 1997 and it was pretty horrendous with frost heaves then, took me two days taking my time thru there as I overnighted on Nabesna Road and overnighted in Gakona the following day taking my sweet time to Anchorage.

Logged 45,951 total miles with my camper on my 1970 F250 rig, and the GVWR was overweight between 200 and 600 lbs., while the front axle was 300 lbs. overweight from 2008 thru 2016.....All on Alaska and western Canada roadways with countless frost heaves and buckled road surfaces in between without a bent or broken mishap !!!!!.

Although I had to retire the 1970 F250 truck of mine from being a full time camper hauler because of the replacement cab mounts welded in 2010 were not as durable as the factory ones - only lasted six years as I only had 80 percent rust free floorboard left and the steering column started taking a toll on the heavier front end with the cabover camper weight - now it is an everyday driver starting in 2017 with the extra weight off the truck and is just fine.

I'm sorry but whenever someone experiences equipment damage to suspension or axles - they were still driving too fast for road conditions - it is all on the driver.


If the road is declared open, it is drivable....just slow down or waaaay down if the road surface is worse like I always done and you will avoid damage.

Unless one wants to be in a hurry - then avoid a certain route and go the long way around if that's an option.


Bottom line here is: You must allot adequate time to compensate for road conditions caused by extreme weather and geological conditions. Alaskans and Northern Canadians operate under some of the most extreme conditions on earth. Therefore, it makes building 'Lower 48' type roads next to impossible.

Do your research, allocate the proper amount time, leave your 65 mph travel plans at home and incorporate slow going into your adventure......or don't go.

Kayteg1

California > Nevada

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Posted: 07/15/19 05:33pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

MORSNOW wrote:



Kayteg, just before Anchorage is the Eagle River campground, take the Eagle River Loop/Hiland Road exit (3rd Eagle River exit after you cross the river and climb back uphill), cross back over the highway and take an immediate left on VFW Road, the campground access road will be on your right. Its a Chugach National Forrest campground without hookups but right on the river, beautiful. Eagle River is about 10 miles from downtown Anchorage and has a Safeway grocery
There are 3 dump stations in Eagle River too (Chevron, Tesoro, & Fred Meyer gas stations).

The three "camp grounds" in Anchorage are all kind of sketchy.

South of Anchorage about 15 Miles is Bird Creek campground, also no hookups but located on the Turnagain Arm of the Cook Inlet. One gas station right across the highway.


Drove via it just hour ago. When it is nice scenery in the woods, it is $20/night for parking pad as the only amenities are pit toilets.
Dump station is closed and they have cistern with water.
For last 2 weeks I had much nicer scenery for free while getting here.
Come down to Centennial Park, with showers, dump and WI-FI included in $25/night.
All sites with electric are taken, but I carried generator for 4000 miles, so don't mind to finally use it and don't think I will use $10 of electric they charge.
Commenting on Alaskan Highway - I used to live in 4-seasons and know what winter can do to the roads. IMHO the Alaskan Highway was poorly build to start with. You have nice stretches of smooth asphalt for few miles and then build "speed bumps" that will get you airborne at 60 mph. Evidently different crews build different stretches. Than don't see any surface repairs done. Whenever there are cracks, or other pavement build flaw, they dump few tons of gravel, set warning signs and call it the season.
Kind of sucks as 40 years ago somebody invented an asphalt truck, who could make the patches driving 40 mph. But that technology never got here.
Camper is down and it is closing on dinner time. There is Texas Roadhouse across the freeway, but did I drive to Alaska to eat Texan steaks?
Time to go.

* This post was last edited 07/15/19 10:00pm by Kayteg1 *   View edit history

timjet

Land O Lakes, FL

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Posted: 07/16/19 11:43am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

jacketsbum wrote:

In Wisconsin on way back home. Traveled over 11400 miles so far. Steer clear of Tok cut off between Tok and Glennallen. Use rt 4 between Delta Junction and Glennallen. Tok cut off is in bad shape (frost heaves) and construction. Broke a spring and shackle there. Saw another guy who broke an axle. Long delays there also.


Unfortunately our caravan is scheduled to take the TOK cutoff in early August, will go slow.

Top of the World Highway is not in good shape either, probably not different that it's always been. Avg speed on the Canadian side is 25-45 and 15-25 on the American side. 90% gravel between Dawson City and Chicken, but mostly paved between Chicken and TOK. If you take this route your rig will get dusted like you've never seen before. Personally I would avoid this route if given a chance. Though a pretty view there are other highway views in the lower 48 than are as good or better. Just my opinion.


Tampa Bay
'07 American Tradition Cummins ISL
'14 Honda CRV

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