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Old 08-20-2012, 04:13 PM
Location: Bethel, Alaska
21,361 posts, read 32,987,370 times
Reputation: 13755


IsoHeet, not the Methanol Heet.
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Old 08-20-2012, 11:45 PM
Location: Kasilof, Ak/NCa
339 posts, read 482,362 times
Reputation: 208
Originally Posted by warptman View Post
IsoHeet, not the Methanol Heet.

Ding, ding, ding. 50 points to you. That's what I was trying to remember. I blame it on old age.
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Old 08-20-2012, 11:46 PM
Location: Appalachian Mountains
534 posts, read 965,565 times
Reputation: 411
Great advice, thanks for all the suggestions!!
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:19 PM
Location: "Out there" in Alaska.
305 posts, read 565,464 times
Reputation: 481
Don't forget a jug of water. I take a single burner Coleman and a coffee pot to heat water, soup, whatever. Bread, peanut butter, jam/jelly, dried fruit, and coffee or tea. Take some candy, nuts, chocolate. Toilet paper, too (believe me). All the rest is good - sleeping bag, change of clothes, winter gear, flares, spares, aspirin/ibu/aceta, heat packs/warmers for pockets or boots, and cap. De-icer wiper fluid is a godsend, and a good flashlight or two. I've run on absolutely dry roads from border to border in November, and fought icy, snow-bound mountains in October. Never had to use my spare fuel, but always take at least two 5-gallon jugs full of diesel. Heet or 9-1-1 additive for sure with every fill up when it's cold. And chains are never a bad investment. Cell service isn't great, but it's there in various places. Beef up your international/Canadian plan with your service for the few days of your trip, it's worth the extra fee.
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Old 08-23-2012, 01:40 PM
4,718 posts, read 8,941,768 times
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We brought toilet paper with us on our Summer trip and were glad we did... Cell service is really spotty in yukon and northern BC/Alberta.

Do truckers use CBs in that area of the world?

And I did change my cell plan for Canada and it was well worth it... Changed it back for the following month.
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Old 08-23-2012, 02:15 PM
Location: Bethel, Alaska
21,361 posts, read 32,987,370 times
Reputation: 13755
Shovel, don't forget a shovel!
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Old 08-23-2012, 03:29 PM
Location: Floor e duh
89 posts, read 298,646 times
Reputation: 59
Tire chains are a handy thing to have! I always figured it was better to have them and not need them than to need them and not have them! Cable chains worked for me!
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Old 08-23-2012, 06:45 PM
Location: Connecticut is my adopted home.
2,276 posts, read 3,064,775 times
Reputation: 7017
I forgot to add that the road between Tetlin Junction AK and Destruction Bay on Kluane Lake is a bear of frost heaves, potholes and dips. Plan to take that section fairly slow.

Customs will require a passport now. Canada doesn't really care but US customs does. Though US customs can't deny a citizen access into their country, a passport saves the special bureaucratic rectal exam, if you know what I mean. Canada will ask for ID (passport, or driver's license and birth certificate) normally they will ask about firearms, tobacco, alcohol, fresh produce (don't bring apples or raw potatoes) and depending on how poor you look, whether you have a credit card or enough cash to get through Canada. They don't want you getting stuck there without means to carry on through and then out of Canada. They will ask you how long you will be in Canada, if you are carrying something for someone else, and if you are carrying more than $10K in cash. If you have a pet let us know and I can get into that as well.

Someone asked about CBs. Don't bother with CB radio. CB radio is line of sight communication (with some ionospheric skip in certain atmospheric conditions) and given the terrain of most of the highway, it would not be a very useable in communication medium on the highway with miles between the various vehicles on the road. One may be able to ask a passing truck what road conditions are like on channel 19 but that would work only if they were monitoring their CB.

Our extra fuel came in very handy when a lodge's non-diesel pump was out of service on a planned stop and on a very cold January trip when the pump hose broke while fueling in Beaver Creek. We follow the 50% rule i.e. fill up if at all possible when the tank gets to half or below. Better safe than sorry when it comes to fuel.

If you have a very capable vehicle, a good tow strap or winch is helpful to get stranded motorists out of ditches or to tow for short distances. Things we've done on the highway on at least a third of our trips up or down the Alcan. Hopefully you won't need it yourself but it's best to have that gear. Nothing is more frustrating than trying to dig someone out of a snow filled ditch with their broken fender and gloved hands which was a scene we drove up on 100 miles south of Watson Lake in the late afternoon a few years back. The guy that stopped had no retrieval gear and the gal stuck was a study of what not to do. She was heading to Kelowna with almost no money, no gear, an older car with crappy tires traveling south toward the most challenging section of highway in dwindling daylight. Don't be that guy.

The drive is beautiful, long and sometimes eventful. A reliable car, good winter tires, the milepost, proper gear, good planning and your wits about you will ensure a great trip, one that most Alaskans only make once or twice in their lives.

Last edited by AK-Cathy; 08-23-2012 at 07:27 PM..
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