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  #1  
Old 11-15-2012, 10:16 AM
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Default Looking for advice on Texas to Alaska routes

As I've mentioned before, I'm beginning to prepare my dl650k7 for a Texas to Alaska trip next August. I've got a copy of the Milepost, and have begun to study it up a bit. But what I need is some suggestions for the best routes from Texas to Alaska. I'm going to take about a month off for the entire trip. I want to take the shortest route to Alaska (looks like around 4k miles each way), but at the same time, if I can add some really cool roads/routes/scenery to the trip by adding a few miles to the journey, that would be a good tradeoff. So if you've made this journey I'd like to ask for your recommendations on routes from Texas to AK.

Thanks!
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Old 11-15-2012, 11:17 AM
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you should post your route so that recommendations are not wild goose chases.
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Old 11-15-2012, 11:23 AM
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A couple of north-south possibilities
--US-95 through Idaho
--US-93 through Montana

If you need an east-west route just north of the border, look at BC & Alberta-3, the Crow's Nest Highway.
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Last edited by PTRider; 11-15-2012 at 12:42 PM.
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Old 11-15-2012, 12:09 PM
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Generally Northwest of where you live. Avoid due west routes until Haines Crossing, you'll end up the Pacific too soon.
Really, what do you want to see on the way there or the way back? A Rand McNally would be helpful for the big picture.
I hear from folks that have been there the the scenery gets to be the same after you get far enough North.
Some days, or weeks, some of the sights are clouded in fog and rain so what you go to see may not be visible during your whole stay there.
Kinda like the Rose Parade or a Football game. Best viewed on the telly from the couch.
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Old 11-15-2012, 12:31 PM
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There are only about 2000 choices for routes through the western US, so don't expect much help there.

But after you cross the border you have fewer choices (depending on where you cross, of course), so useful advice can be had. But no matter how you get there your route will almost certainly go through Prince George, BC, where you WILL have a choice to make: either NE to Dawson Creek and the Alaska Highway, or NW to Kitwanga and then N on the Cassiar Highway. Both will join again at Watson Lake, Yukon. The Alcan is pretty boring, IMHO, and Cassiar route offers a LOT more wildlife encounters as well as a very interesting side excursion to Hyder, AK where a 20-mile (or so) gravel road will bring you to probably the most spectacular scenery you will see on the entire trip, the Salmon Glacier.

If you are doing the entire swing by road I'd say take the Cassiar one way and the Alcan the other. But one month is not much time for a round trip by land if you want any time to poke around AK and take worthwhile side trips along the way -- like entering AK via the Klondike and Taylor Hwys rather than the Alcan. If you have the $$ I would highly recommend the Cassiar route up and the AK ferry system back (to Seattle).

But you can't go wrong in any case. It's a nice ride.
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Old 11-15-2012, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeB View Post
There are only about 2000 choices for routes through the western US, so don't expect much help there.

But after you cross the border you have fewer choices (depending on where you cross, of course), so useful advice can be had. But no matter how you get there your route will almost certainly go through Prince George, BC, where you WILL have a choice to make: either NE to Dawson Creek and the Alaska Highway, or NW to Kitwanga and then N on the Cassiar Highway. Both will join again at Watson Lake, Yukon. The Alcan is pretty boring, IMHO, and Cassiar route offers a LOT more wildlife encounters as well as a very interesting side excursion to Hyder, AK where a 20-mile (or so) gravel road will bring you to probably the most spectacular scenery you will see on the entire trip, the Salmon Glacier.

If you are doing the entire swing by road I'd say take the Cassiar one way and the Alcan the other. But one month is not much time for a round trip by land if you want any time to poke around AK and take worthwhile side trips along the way -- like entering AK via the Klondike and Taylor Hwys rather than the Alcan. If you have the $$ I would highly recommend the Cassiar route up and the AK ferry system back (to Seattle).

But you can't go wrong in any case. It's a nice ride.
MikeB:

I have heard of people taking the ferry but I don't understand it. Is the main reason for taking the ferry to shorten the highway miles? Or is the ferry a particularly good thing to experience in and of itself?


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Old 11-15-2012, 01:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by notacop View Post
Generally Northwest of where you live. Avoid due west routes until Haines Crossing, you'll end up the Pacific too soon.
Really, what do you want to see on the way there or the way back? A Rand McNally would be helpful for the big picture.
I hear from folks that have been there the the scenery gets to be the same after you get far enough North.
Some days, or weeks, some of the sights are clouded in fog and rain so what you go to see may not be visible during your whole stay there.
Kinda like the Rose Parade or a Football game. Best viewed on the telly from the couch.
Notacop:

Keeping in mind that I've never ridden outside of Texas, would you advise following a route through the Rockies to see the scenery? Or should I stay east of the Rockies as long as possible for making better time?


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Old 11-15-2012, 01:39 PM
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Default Tx to AK

Starting @ Drummond MT suggest helmville rd. to Ovando MT, then up east side of flathead lake to kalispel, hwy 93 to Eureka/ roosville (border crossing) proceed to radium hot springs BC , @ radium hot springs turn west to connect to Icefields PKWY, then north to jasper. At Jasper take yellowknife hwy to new hazleton bc
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  #9  
Old 11-15-2012, 01:53 PM
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Default TX to AK

correction turn EAST @ radium Hot spgs (ya have to jog alittle to continue north and road to and thru icefields worth it), also as to ferry systems much better to go BC ferries then alaskan maritime hwy when possible. bc ferries spots you , uses six in. wide straps that go over you seat (after they check to see if you want to place your own pad or blanket tween seat and strap) and secure to pad eyes placed in deck. On alaskan maritime hwy the deck hand directed me to an area of wet car deck. up against a bulkhead, pointed to low bumper rail, and said "Find yourself a piece of string and tie it to that"
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  #10  
Old 11-15-2012, 02:30 PM
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Brg, the maps that show the blue highways give you the back roads. The interstate slabs are great if you want to make time. Any highway never taken is worth it once!
The smaller back roads wander through more interesting country but have fewer gas stops and civilization on the them.
The reason for the ferry is so you don't do the same road again. And it's different scenery.
Friend who drove his motorhome up to Inuvit complained of 500 miles of pissy little trees up and 500 miles of pissy little trees on the way back. That's a lot of the same.
He suggested flying to Alaska, rent the motorhome, or bike, and ride around and take the ferry back. Get the mostest for your time and money.
You can Google Earth the route you want and actually see what it looks like before committing to it.
I do fly overs of places all the time. Very entertaining and illuminating.
Oh, and there be Mosquitos.
Some guys that have done it say to do it late in the season because the spring/summer bloom of nasty bugs has passed. Maybe some of the tourist crowd has gone too. The window of Artic perfection is quite small from what I understand.
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