Alaska in winter? - Fiberglass RV



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Old 03-24-2019, 12:17 PM   #1
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Name: Jeff
Trailer: Shopping
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Question Alaska in winter?

Hey everyone, so Iím planning a trip from California to Alaska in 2021. Still searching for a later model Bigfoot 21fb, but thatís not why Iím here. I was wondering if anyone here has made this trip in a trailer, in January. I have the Milepost book and have searched websites gathering info, but the websites are all vanilla with info, and not many have made the trip in winter. I'm looking for someone who has actually done it.

The tow vehicle is a 2019 Ford F150 extended cab 4x4 with a hard bed cover. I have a Honda generator with a breather heater to charge batteries, plug in the block heater and propane tank PowerBlanket.

I realize campgrounds will not be open, so all overnighting will be done in parking lots? Are there places along the way to fill water tanks, or will it all be bottled? What about dump stations?

Should I just forget the trailer and hotel it? All information about traveling this route in winter will be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
Jeff
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Old 03-24-2019, 11:13 PM   #2
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Jeff, we made the trip this last summer, and what suprised me were what looked like the old drive-in theater poles that the speakers were suspended from, were actually electrical plugs in the Wal-Mart parking lot for shoppers to plug their cars into to heat the engine block. A local teacher that we talked to stated that they do not cancel school until the temperature is colder than -60 degrees F. I would vote for the hotel route, as I wouldnít think even a Big Foot is insulated enough for those kind of temperatures.
Warmest reguards
Dave & Paula
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Old 03-25-2019, 04:07 AM   #3
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Jeff, we made the trip this last summer, and what suprised me were what looked like the old drive-in theater poles that the speakers were suspended from, were actually electrical plugs in the Wal-Mart parking lot for shoppers to plug their cars into to heat the engine block. A local teacher that we talked to stated that they do not cancel school until the temperature is colder than -60 degrees F. I would vote for the hotel route, as I wouldnít think even a Big Foot is insulated enough for those kind of temperatures.
Warmest reguards
Dave & Paula
Thanks for the input Dave and Paula. From the lack of views and even fewer responses I get the hint, stupid idea without more firsthand information. I will rethink my plans and do the hotel route this coming winter.

I had such grandiose thoughts of being the only rv on the highway surrounded by majestic snow-capped peaks, no mosquitoes, no tourists and smooth snow-covered highways. Of course, I was going to plan this trip during the ďno bad weatherĒ time of January. No big deal, same thing, just wonít be pulling a trailer.

I have lots of other harebrained ideas, so I will still be looking for that Bigfoot.

Thanks again Dave and Paula,
Jeff
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Old 03-25-2019, 05:52 AM   #4
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I sure hope you have the optional bigger fuel tank, as gas will be scarce.

Four season trailer or not, I would go dry (no water).

Going to need chains for truck AND trailer.


It sounds like an adventure, I would not dismiss the idea. Watch the Roadkill episode where they drove an old Ranchero up to AK in the winter.

I found some errors on the milepost on my trip in 2017.


The best tow package (53C) on the F150 (they have three different ones), includes a bigger fuel tank (36 gallons). My next F150 will have that tank!
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Old 03-25-2019, 07:48 AM   #5
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I sure hope you have the optional bigger fuel tank, as gas will be scarce.

Four season trailer or not, I would go dry (no water).

Going to need chains for truck AND trailer.


It sounds like an adventure, I would not dismiss the idea. Watch the Roadkill episode where they drove an old Ranchero up to AK in the winter.

I found some errors on the milepost on my trip in 2017.


The best tow package (53C) on the F150 (they have three different ones), includes a bigger fuel tank (36 gallons). My next F150 will have that tank!
36-gallon, 3.5L V6 EcoBoost, 10 speed with the 3.55 locking diff. tow pac, gets a little over 650 miles to a tank. Thatís when all the low fuel lights and bells go off.
Stuff I carry while traveling, generator, floor jack, chains, tow strap, air compressor, 20 lb. propane tank, fuel for generator, tools and camping stuff.
Greatest distance Iíve heard between fuel stops in winter on the Alaska highway was about 200 miles. If a station runs out, Iím still covered.

I saw that roadkill episode, didn't they also make the trip in a Chevy 4x4?

Iím guessing it would be better if I drove like an ecological hippyÖÖ.

But I just love those turbos.

Okay, commence firing, I deserve it.

Just love those turbosÖ
Jeff

Also isn't that mex emoji kinda racist, just sayin'.
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Old 03-25-2019, 07:56 AM   #6
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Cut that range dramatically when you are towing. EB is known to get a steep drop in fuel economy when towing something of size. And gas stations are not conveniently located on the Alcan. You get gas early or risk the next one being out of fuel/closed/whatever. It’s part of the adventure!
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:05 AM   #7
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A woman with an Oliver Travel Trailer full times in Alaska. I forget if her info is on the Oliver Travel Forum [https://olivertraveltrailers.com/forums/] or the Facebook group titled Oliver Travel Trailer Owners. Ask her for suggestions.
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:22 AM   #8
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I lived in Alaska for eight years and have traversed the Alaska Highway in all seasons. In mid-winter much of the route is solid snow pack and not much fun for pulling a trailer. Propane efficiency is compromised at extreme sub-zero temps. Pull-outs and campgrounds that are available in summer are not open or even plowed out. I usually winterized my trailer in late September and didn't get it out till late May when I lived there. At the time I had a Casita. I have since acquired a Bigfoot, but I still wouldn't pull it to Alaska in mid winter. Winter travel is also less appealing because of the long hours of darkness, but that is another discussion. If you travel in January, plan to stay in hotels or lodges.
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Old 03-25-2019, 10:51 AM   #9
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Though winters have mellowed quite a bit the 30+ years Iíve lived here, temps still hit -40į and winter camping could be miserable. Hotels have winter rates and there are tons of quality b&b and air b&b accommodations available.
I used to work in Juneau and drive home some weekends. Border closure hours, gas station closures or distances, white out... l nearly died in the middle of no where one trip.
Winter in the Interior is rugged, beautiful and worth experiencing but drive up during one of our incredible summers.
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Old 03-25-2019, 12:09 PM   #10
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Though winters have mellowed quite a bit the 30+ years Iíve lived here, temps still hit -40į and winter camping could be miserable. Hotels have winter rates and there are tons of quality b&b and air b&b accommodations available.
I used to work in Juneau and drive home some weekends. Border closure hours, gas station closures or distances, white out... l nearly died in the middle of no where one trip.
Winter in the Interior is rugged, beautiful and worth experiencing but drive up during one of our incredible summers.
Hey Bruce, we have friends in Fairbanks and have Hotel/camped our way up there in summer by motorcycle. It was unforgettable! Also, I hate mosquitoes.

Really looking forward to viewing Aurora Borealis in February or March. I know, no guarantees. Missed the cycle in 2017, donít know if Iíll be here in 2028. Winter is the best viewing time for the lights and I just thought viewing them, bundled up by a campfire, sitting outside our little trailer would be, you know, better than a parking lot.

We camped out in central Oregon to view the total solar eclipse and are looking forward to Nazas, Mexico in 2024 for the next.

Oh, did I mention that I HATE mosquitoes!!
Jeff
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Old 03-25-2019, 12:36 PM   #11
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My bad, the sunspot cycle will peak winter 2024. The eclipse is on April 8, 2024. That's going to be a long haul, Alaska to Mexico in a little over a month.
But that's only if we don't see lights next year. Bucket list...
Jeff
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Old 03-27-2019, 07:39 PM   #12
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I have driven to AK several times. Mosquitoes in June and early July? Terrible. Mosquitoes in August? Almost none. YMMV.
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