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Old 05-16-2016, 09:14 PM
 
21 posts, read 11,538 times
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So next year i plan on makeing the long drive from southern illinois to anchorage alaska to stay with a friend. Alot of people have told me that late feb would be a bad idea to travel the roads but i like the adventure aspect of it. The main reason i want to go at this time is to catch the start of the iditarod will be staying in alaska for a couple weeks then drive back home. I will be driving a 2016 Duramax crew cab 4x4 with a large 4 wheeler in the bed and towing a 20ft enclosed trailer with my polaris rzr in it. Myself and one of my other friends are very mechanicaly inclined (hes a diesel mechanic) Im a jack of all trades mechanic, but master of none lol. I am always extremely prepared with winches tow straps tools spare parts extra diesel and gas etc. The root of my question i guess is late feb not a good idea? if its going to be several inches of snow on the ground and driving 30mph or less for 2000 miles im not sure id want to spend that much more time driving lol. I am from illinois so im not stranger to driving in the snow. Should i get snowchains? lol Thanks for the help!
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:24 PM
 
1,451 posts, read 809,952 times
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Illinois and Alaska aren't the same. Understand that you will go many miles without a service station. Temps could be -40 or colder not including windchill. You will be passing through Canada as well. I'd recommend studded tires over chains but not sure if they'd be allowed.

Of course you could encounter a winter like this one where temps were mild and snow was scarce.
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:25 PM
 
1,451 posts, read 809,952 times
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Why bring the ATVs?
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:32 PM
 
21 posts, read 11,538 times
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My friend has atvs and big trucks he goes riding alot and thats our hobbie since theres so many great places in the wilderness to ride too. His pictures of the trails and places he goes are amazing. I plan on spending alot of time outside playing in the snow!
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Old 05-16-2016, 09:33 PM
 
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and i realize illinois is no alaska lol, i was simply implying im not from the far south where an inch of snow on the road is the end of the world.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:18 PM
 
Location: Back and Beyond
2,166 posts, read 1,746,663 times
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I drove the highway with no problems in the winter but wasn't hauling anything.

You may want to leave the ATV's behind and bring a snowmachine up instead that time of year. Although you probably could have ridden the ATV up here that time this last year. Not that it can't be done and isn't done, but hauling a trailer in winter adds another element of things that can go wrong. If you are coming for just a shot period of time, they also rent ATV's and snowmachines up here for pretty reasonable prices, considering the extra fuel costs of hauling yours up here and then back. Just something to think about.

My friends new duramax needed a simple part replaced and he had to wait in whitehorse for 3 days for it to come. Good luck.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:41 PM
 
1,451 posts, read 809,952 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laugel View Post
My friend has atvs and big trucks he goes riding alot and thats our hobbie since theres so many great places in the wilderness to ride too. His pictures of the trails and places he goes are amazing. I plan on spending alot of time outside playing in the snow!
Yeah...how long your friend been up here?

I'd recommend getting a snowmachine instead of what you plan on bringing.
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:51 PM
 
21 posts, read 11,538 times
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Hes been there for a couple years now hes in the military. And snowmobile has crossed my mind, id have the room too bring one no doubt. What is the earliest on average when the winter isnt as harsh, early may? Its warmer in anchorage than it has been here for last couple weeks odly enough. Dipped down in the 30s several nights. He said on most trails once the snow gets packed down a atv like mine wouldnt have any issues. I considered the rental too, just like riding my own stuff ya know?
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Old 05-16-2016, 10:52 PM
 
Location: Interior Alaska
1,712 posts, read 1,312,211 times
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The locals have already heard the story but for your benefit, one of my cousins once flew up to buy a new Cummins from my cousin who lives in North Pole then she and her husband drove it home through Canada (meaning not on the ferry). That thing went t*ts up in the middle of the Yukon, so they had to #1 get a ride somewhere they could make a phone call, #2 make arrangements for a tow ($$$$ in the middle of the Yukon... in the summer, btw), #3 Jeff had to get back to where the pickup was, #4 wait for the wrecker, #5 pay for the most expensive tow in the history of towing ($$$$), #6 several misdiagnoses of issue ($$$) with the pickup, #7 several incorrect parts ($$$$) flown into the Yukon both by ($$$$) parts people and by my (North Pole) cousin's wife ($$$), #8 remember they're ($$$$) paying for lodging in the middle of the Yukon this whole time, #9 mechanic finally figures out he's got the right part in the boneyard out back $$$$$+#**@&#

So the takeaway is that sh*t happens. Usually in the worst place possible. And, even if you're down for an adventure, would you and could you deal with the same as above when it's -40*F? All told they were stuck in BFE, YT for a couple weeks with misdiagnoses and waiting on parts flying in. Including the tow, that got expensive very fast.

I am always up for an adventure and you and your buddy sound pretty handy, so I actually don't want to discourage you... just cautioning you that you need to be prepared. Super prepared.

Oh, open fuel stations will be scarce particularly that time of year. Do you have a fuel transfer tank & pump in the back of your pickup? If not... lots and lots of jerry cans!
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Old 05-16-2016, 11:02 PM
 
21 posts, read 11,538 times
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Ive mapped out the stops best i can so far from milepost major places and etc. No i planned on bringing about 35 gallons extra of diesel (truck is 36 gal tank). My trailer has a generator on it compressor, toolbox etc. My side by side is also enclosed cab with heater. **** does happen no doubt that why im asking you guys to get an idea for everything i need or may encounter. If its something that isnt doable then i wont. I just wanted to plan ahead.
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