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Utah to Prudhoe Bay Trip Advice

Discussion in 'Alaska' started by Gunshot-6A, Aug 2, 2018.

  1. Sep 13, 2018 at 11:04 PM
    #41
    skierd

    skierd Well-Known Member

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    1 - June is my favorite month in Alaska, and typically the driest in the interior, especially around Solstice.

    2 - I rode to Alaska on a Yamaha WR250R in March 2012, and my dad and I drove the highway in 1993 in a rented Ford Escort. so yes anything with four wheels can make it.

    As far as spare tires, the Dalton is a 500 mile mostly industrial mostly gravel road with no services and limited towing. A second spare or at least a patch kit is a good idea.

    Snow is possible any time of the year, so you’ll also need enough gas to get from Coldfoot to Atigun and back to Coldfoot in case the pass gets closed. With weather, etc plan on needing 400 miles of range and plan accordingly.

    3 - how much time off do you have? To get here and back? I’m planning a trip out next spring to buy an RV and giving myself two weeks for a round trip to the NW from Fairbanks.

    The Dalton is not a road to make time on. A safe plan is 3 days to do the road, one up one back and one just in case. Remember it’s a service road to the oil fields. The big trucks aren’t necessarily going to slow down for you either. Drive with courtesy and caution and you’ll be fine.

    If the Dalton is the must-do, get here and do that first, then meander home.

    4 - practice keeping a bear safe camp but don’t be paranoid. Cook away from the truck, store food in bear proof containers, use the bear boxes at campgrounds, don’t park and camp on bear scat, etc. Chances are you won’t see a bear at all.

    Overall it’s an amazing drive, don’t worry and think too hard, and have fun!


     
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  2. Sep 13, 2018 at 11:28 PM
    #42
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    Somewhere in the Mojave Desert...
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    Sounds like a great trip! As for bears, invest in some bear cans to keep food and their smell in, as your shell can be easily broken into. Also load your 870 with a triple-aught shell between each slug, more effective that way...
     
  3. Sep 13, 2018 at 11:57 PM
    #43
    Gunshot-6A

    Gunshot-6A [OP] Not a Fed

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    So we made a change of plans and are headed up to Inuvik and Tuk to lessen the distance 1000 miles and save a shitload on gas and some time. We gotta pack all the cool stuff into 2.5 weeks. Should be a little more rugged as well.

    On spares, we have patches and plugs already, but I scored a free 265/75r16 and trdor wheel off a facebook group last week for a second spare!

    Good call on the bear stuff. Dont be an idiot and you'll be fine is the advice i get from most. Neutral/downside is going up the canadian route means no guns, so just gonna have to go with bear spray. My wingman is slower than me as well, so I got that going for me :D

    Capture.jpg
     
    Last edited: Sep 14, 2018
    OnHartung'sRoad likes this.
  4. Sep 14, 2018 at 7:40 AM
    #44
    SnowroxKT

    SnowroxKT Well-Known Member

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    Generally, bears won't touch a car, tents they might but hard-shelled things like a car/fiberglass shell they won't bother with.

    Wut?

    Because a slug isn't as effective as buckshot on bears? lol. Also, I like to know what is coming out of my barrel, not mixing it up willy nilly.
     
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  5. Sep 14, 2018 at 7:49 AM
    #45
    Glueman

    Glueman Yersinia pestis

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    6 inch Douche Bag lift...what else do I need?
    This sounds like an epic trip. Won't lie...kind of jealous.
     
  6. Sep 14, 2018 at 7:50 AM
    #46
    Gunshot-6A

    Gunshot-6A [OP] Not a Fed

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    I've seen a few cars around Yellowstone and Yosemite that have been peeled like a banana to get to the goods inside vehicles. Granted those are emboldened "park bears" vs natural ones

    Never understood that either, but who am I to judge. A slug or buck changeover takes like 1.5 seconds tops (with some practice...:fenforcer:)
     
  7. Sep 14, 2018 at 7:57 AM
    #47
    crazysccrmd

    crazysccrmd Well-Known Member

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    A charging bear covers over 70' in those 1.5 seconds. Straight slugs is the way to go. Triple aught buck won't do shit to a big bear.
     
  8. Sep 14, 2018 at 8:04 AM
    #48
    Gunshot-6A

    Gunshot-6A [OP] Not a Fed

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    Yeah, If I'm in bear territory, I'm rolling a full load of heavy AF slugs. But if you were to need a buckshot round, having them interspersed in the tube isn't the way I would carry them.
     
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  9. Sep 14, 2018 at 9:34 AM
    #49
    skierd

    skierd Well-Known Member

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    It’s roughly 3200 miles to Tuktoyatok vs 3400 miles to Deadhorse from SLC, so the mileage is roughly the same (going off a quick google maps). I’m not sure about the fuel range needs on the Dempster, I haven’t ridden it yet, but I think it’s closer to 500 miles.

    2.5 weeks isn’t a lot of time but should be doable as an out and back trip for either highway, barring mechanicals or tire problems. Speed limits are lower in Canada and more time will be spent on gravel. The roads that are paved aren’t in great shape and are mostly 2 lanes, 65mph in the USA, follow the curves of the earth and are made broken and lumpy by the thawing permafrost and heavy truck and RV traffic and studded tires in winter. Lots of rented RV’s, motorcycles, and big trucks on the roads too. Mind the center line and never assume that oncoming traffic will stay in its lane.

    Also don’t use the sun to determine when to stop. ;) I bought my Tacoma in May and have never needed the headlights except for driving in the rain. Expect 20+ hours of daylight and for it to never really get dark, so you’ll have to be on top of driver fatigue. Be prepared to make camp in broad daylight.
     
  10. Sep 14, 2018 at 9:43 AM
    #50
    Gunshot-6A

    Gunshot-6A [OP] Not a Fed

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    On our Alaska trip, we were gonna swing through anchorage on the way home hence the mileage difference.

    The near 24/7 daylight is gonna be trippy. Thankfully we are shaping up to have a team of 4 (2 per vehicle) to manage crew rest demands.
     
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  11. Sep 14, 2018 at 9:57 AM
    #51
    skierd

    skierd Well-Known Member

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    The loop from Fairbanks to Anchorage to Tok is one of the most beautiful drives in the world imo, and well worth the extra 2 days imo. 3 if you make the detour to Valdez, and you should.

    Speaking of Tok, if you do come to Alaska stop at Fast Eddies. They literally saved my life on my ride to Alaska. I had maybe $100 left to my name when I made it to Tok and it was tied up on my debit card thanks to the gas station holds in Canada. On the promise that I’d call someone in the lower 48 in the morning for payment they fed me dinner, gave me a room, and fed me breakfast instead of making me camp out at -10F after riding in 5F weather all day to get there.

    And if you’re really paranoid about bears, you could get a portable electric fence setup like a lot of moose and caribou hunters use up here to set up a perimeter. Or at the end of the day, drive another 10-20 miles down the road after cooking dinner and camp there, keeping your food locked up.
     
  12. Sep 14, 2018 at 11:40 AM
    #52
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    After working for Forest Service with their LEO’s, thats how I learned to load.

    Bears dont generally touch cars?
    7D831737-B683-4E49-97DC-526D7FBE04EF.jpg
    D5ED65F7-A77B-4805-87FA-4ADAEED948A6.jpg
     
  13. Sep 14, 2018 at 12:17 PM
    #53
    Gunshot-6A

    Gunshot-6A [OP] Not a Fed

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    The slug and buck combo is a LEO carryover that works well against people, but not necessarily furry freight trains.

    and yeah, bears will fuck up a car.
     
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  14. Sep 14, 2018 at 12:23 PM
    #54
    OnHartung'sRoad

    OnHartung'sRoad -So glad I didn't take the other...

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    I’m more worried about the later, never had issues with bears...

    Had a girlfriend once (Edit: and for a very short time) who did that to a car, too. :crazy::der:
     
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  15. Sep 14, 2018 at 12:50 PM
    #55
    kai38`

    kai38` Well-Known Member

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    Great trip. I got back July 1st from Alaska trip.
    https://1drv.ms/f/s!Au66L7C4MC3e8GK1i5mSvcycC4LB

    Spend time in Banff,Jasper and Icefield Parkway.
    Canada knows how to set up a campground. A lot of them have free firewood, and plenty of free campsites enroute.

    Milepost was a waste of money- 90% are ads info can be found on line
    I used freecampsites.net to find free campgrounds from NM to Alaska
    Get fuel when you're at half a tank, the gas station you planned to fuel up at might not have fuel or even be out of business since trip reports were written
    We saw lots of wild life when we were there (May-July) never had a problem with bears, keep a clean camp, cook & clean up away from where you're sleeping.
    This trip (my 3rd) I didn't have any tire issues, but had 2 spares, ARB compressor, plugs, tools etc.
    Start early with truck maintenance, fluids, lube,shocks, driveshaft carrier,wheel bearings etc.

    I attached a .gpx file of campgrounds, some free, some i used enroute or in Canada & Alaska
     

    Attached Files:

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  16. Sep 14, 2018 at 1:17 PM
    #56
    Gunshot-6A

    Gunshot-6A [OP] Not a Fed

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    Thanks for the info. I'll look more in depth when I get home from work.
     
  17. Dec 21, 2020 at 9:43 PM
    #57
    Taco Pat

    Taco Pat Well-Known Member

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    OP -just stumbled across this and it’s a bucket list trip for me as well. Any post trip write up on the route?
     
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  18. Dec 22, 2020 at 8:56 AM
    #58
    VE7OSR

    VE7OSR Well-Known Member

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    Armour: All-Pro Skid plates - IFS, transmission, and transfer case. Pelfreybilt rear standard plate bumper, Metal Tech Sliders w/ kickout and dimple die filler plates. Front Suspension: OME 885 + NitroCharger 9000 shocks + 1/2" spacers for a 3" lift. Superbumps replacing stock bumpstops. Camburg ball joint UCA SS braid brake lines Future: ADS Extended length, extended length UCA BJ to increase droop capability Rear Suspension: All-Pro Expedition rear leafs, Walker Evans 27" rear shocks, extended rear brake lines (Wheelers Offroad), U -bolt flip kit, rear Timbren bumpstops. Future: Hammer Hangers, Shock relocate, ADS 12" or 14" shock. Interior: Weatherteck floor liners - front, Wet Okoles- front, ScanGauge, LED interior & map lights. Power moonroof. Exterior: Raider Cobra canopy, retrofit headlight by Insight, LED bulbs all around, modified flasher unit for LEDs. Rear diff breather mod. Front diff vibe problem, driver's side needle bearing replaced with ECGS bushing. yet to install: HID Blazer Fog Retrofit, LED Flood & Spot, + switches, fuse panel. swaybar relocate blocks (build my own)
    Re, using your gun to protect against a wildlife attack in Canada.
    the only reason you are going to be hassled is if the Conservation officer or RCMP think the circumstances did not warrant shooting. No Conservation officer or police officer in rural Canada is going to give you grief over protecting your life.
    Exception is National Parks.

    Now if you get pulled over, and your long gun is in the cab next to you and a round in the chamber, then you have a problem.
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2020
  19. Dec 22, 2020 at 8:58 AM
    #59
    VE7OSR

    VE7OSR Well-Known Member

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    No hassle bringing dogs across, have your vet papers showing it has received its shots, just in case, but they probably won't even ask.
     
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  20. Dec 22, 2020 at 9:23 AM
    #60
    Gunshot-6A

    Gunshot-6A [OP] Not a Fed

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    My Tuk trip write up:

    Boss announces retirement 2 weeks prior to departure (to avoid being let go) effective date: Friday of departure
    Get promoted at work to his job and my department downsized from 2 to 1 by corporate decree
    Papers clear early so end up closing on a house the day before I was supposed to leave
    End up moving instead of making the trip
    Move trip to 2020
    COVID hits
    border closes
    no trip for me
     

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