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Old 09-14-2007, 07:28 PM
 
1 posts, read 24,312 times
Reputation: 15

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Hey Alaska,
I'm moving my family to Fairbanks (Ft. Wainwright) in Feb. We have 2 boys (5 and 3yo). I have a few questions about winter gear.
- are 400 G thinsulate boots going to cut it? (they are -45 degree rated)... or should I pay the extra for -65 or lower? (we plan on being outside alot but not much if it's below -45 degrees).
-We're driving from Anchorage. Should I invest is studded tires, winter tires or simply all season tires? We have a 4WD Outback. (I'm already working on the rest of the winterization process).
- Is Hamilton Acres a good place to live? We are looking to rent something for the first year (apt. condo, or house). We defineatly want convenience over size, i.e. close to grocery store, school, post, coffee shop etc, etc. Any suggestions? our budget is $1000-$1800.

I know I have more questions, but can't think of any right now.
Thanks for any help and we are looking forward to a great adventure!!!
Tony
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Old 09-14-2007, 09:11 PM
 
Location: Northern MN
592 posts, read 1,981,940 times
Reputation: 329
I wear 1600 g. thinsulate when its cold and I live in MN. The weather here is similar to coastal areas of AK but not the interior. Of course, I'm old and my body doesn't work as well as it used to , but the 1600 boots work well if I'm not active...I personally wouldn't go with less than 1200 unless I was extremely active.. Just my $.02.
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Old 09-14-2007, 11:05 PM
 
Location: Fairbanks Alaska
1,675 posts, read 4,449,987 times
Reputation: 609
Quote:
Originally Posted by tonyheinz View Post
Hey Alaska,
I'm moving my family to Fairbanks (Ft. Wainwright) in Feb. We have 2 boys (5 and 3yo). I have a few questions about winter gear.
- are 400 G thinsulate boots going to cut it? (they are -45 degree rated)... or should I pay the extra for -65 or lower? (we plan on being outside alot but not much if it's below -45 degrees).
-We're driving from Anchorage. Should I invest is studded tires, winter tires or simply all season tires? We have a 4WD Outback. (I'm already working on the rest of the winterization process).
- Is Hamilton Acres a good place to live? We are looking to rent something for the first year (apt. condo, or house). We defineatly want convenience over size, i.e. close to grocery store, school, post, coffee shop etc, etc. Any suggestions? our budget is $1000-$1800.

I know I have more questions, but can't think of any right now.
Thanks for any help and we are looking forward to a great adventure!!!
Tony
We can get some -40 in Feburary, but realistically your looking at -20 at night and warmer in the day the closer to March you get. I would suggest you wait till you get here for the winter boots, there should still be a better selection, and with the end of season I would expect some sales to start around then. The problem with -45 or -65 boots is what will they wear when it is -10? Their feet will sweat and then get cold. I have bunny boots for real cold, some people like the pack boots too. My work doesn't normally require me to be out in the weather too much, so I get by with a 400 mil thinsulate, and have room in the boot for wool socks as needed.

I have only owned one set of studded tires, and that was on a rear wheel drive car. I used them on the fron for stopping and turning. That was 30 years ago. I normally use an all season radial and they do fine, especially with 4wd. If you want a good winter tire look at the Blizzacks or Toyo equivilent. Makes a huge difference for stopping on ice. Unless you live off the beaten path I don't think mud and snowtires are really nessecary.
Check the weather before you drive up, sometimes there can be white outs around Cantwell and Healy. Otherwise no problems, The road around Healy can get a little rough so watch your speed.

Hamillton acres is a nice older area, not far from schools, a park, with the new box stores down the road a ways. Shannon Park has the same ammenities less the park but is newer (20+ years). The traffic may be a bit more congested getting in and out of Shannon Park due to a recent traffic revision, but is still doable. Both are near a back gate of Ft. WW. There is also Birchwood Estates, they used to be 801 housing for the military and just came on the market a month or so ago. Remember the bigger the house the bigger the oil bill. An average house will use from 1200 to 1800 gallons a year, mostly in the winter. I think #2 oild for underground tanks is running around $2.45 a gallon. The fuel companies do payment plans.

If you can avoid it try and not sign a lease as I think the market is still adjusting to the additional housing the military is bringing online. This may or may not be complete when you arrive. Rents tend to go up in the summer as construction starts up.


Fairbanks is small enough you can be anywhere in a little over 15 minutes. If you look into University west this turns into an 8 mile run and traffic can build a bit during rush times.
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Old 09-15-2007, 11:33 AM
 
Location: Wasilla, Alaska
17,862 posts, read 11,851,048 times
Reputation: 6298
Layers of clothing is the way to go for cold weather. That way you can remove a layer or two when it warms up, or add another layer or two when it gets colder. Polar fleece is very popular.

I have two pair of winter boots, depending on what I'm going to be doing. If I'm hunting or just out for a hike, I wear 400 gram thinsulate boots with an extra pair of wool socks. I find that is more than enough. In fact, I bring along an extra pair of wool socks in case my feet get too warm and begin to sweat. If I'm going snowmobiling or ice-fishing where I'm not as active, then I wear glacier boots with a thick fleece insert.
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Old 11-24-2009, 12:46 PM
 
1 posts, read 19,679 times
Reputation: 11
i bought a pair of 800 gram boots what temperature are they rated
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Old 11-24-2009, 04:01 PM
 
11,772 posts, read 18,431,388 times
Reputation: 2674
Bunny boots!
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Old 11-28-2009, 03:16 AM
 
Location: Interior AK
4,728 posts, read 5,385,760 times
Reputation: 3211
A lot depends on what you're doing and how long you're going to be doing it.

If, like us, you're out for hours in -40 (or lower) hauling firewood (or whatever) that's on-and-off active, I'd recommend getting the warmest boots you can find, just as long as they have one or more removable liners to adjust their thermo.

If you're going to be full-time active and inside when it's really cold, then you can probably get away with less insulation as long as the boot is roomy enough for several layers of socks when you need them. Compressed socks do NOT insulate, so don't cram your foot into a boot that's too small for 3 layers of socks and expect your feet to stay warm.

Layers of socks, especially wool or poly/synthetic socks that wick moisture away from your feet if you should start sweating, are essential. When you're talking sub-zero temps, one rule stands out "Cotton Kills"... it doesn't insulate very well, it doesn't wick moisture, it gets wet and frozen too easily, and once it's wet or frozen it doesn't insulate at all.

The boots I got were Sorel Glaciers - they're kind of a hiking/pac boot hybrid rated to -100 if you have the liners and insole in place; but they work good up -10 (where my Merril snow hikers work fine) if you remove the various liners. I bought an extra set of liners and insoles just in case one set should get wet from snow melt, crossing a creek, or sweat... although they are wool/synthetic and continue insualte pretty well even if they do get wet, just not as well as dry ones do.

(Everyone seems to love Bunny Boots - but I can't walk in them, and certainly can't go hauling wood in the forest with them. You'll have to decide for yourself when you get here.)

I haven't found 400g of Thinsulate to be enough for boots or gloves much below -10 for anything more than a jog out to the truck and back --- but my hands and feet get cold pretty easily.

We don't have studded tires because we don't drive on paved roads or in town much so don't get the ice problem as much. We just have all-seasons and that seems to work fine if you aren't driving like a maniac. I've noticed that lots of folks just use studs on the front wheels if they have them. I prefer a good set of chains myself... you can take them on and off as needed and they don't require you to have either a dedicated set of winter rims & tires or to get tires mounted before and after season.

Can't speak to Hamilton Acres since I live out in the boonies
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Old 11-28-2009, 03:21 AM
 
Location: Bethel, Alaska
21,045 posts, read 22,881,241 times
Reputation: 12332
I wear Hitech Hiking shoes year round, even when it's 15 below biking to work.

Why am I answering to a two year old thread?
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