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Old 01-05-2019, 08:53 PM
 
2 posts, read 629 times
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First of all, thanks for this amazing forum, just knew about it yesterday and already registered.


I am a senior student from Asia, studying here in California. I will graduate in April and go back to my country. I've always wanted to see Alaska before leaving the US going back home.

I do have a week off (Spring break week) in late March. What do you think? Is it a good time to visit Alaska? Can I drive during that time? I am not accustomed to driving in snow. How many days is enough?

What do I like?

I want to see Anchorage, The Northern Lights, and a couple of the most famous national parks, I would like to see the Alaskan bears.
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Old 01-05-2019, 09:16 PM
 
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Bears might still be asleep, but might not be.
Might be snow, and then again it might all be gone.
Northern lights aren’t a guarantee.
Some of the parks might not be open yet.
Anchorage, will definty Be there though.
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Old 01-05-2019, 11:34 PM
 
Location: Deltana, AK
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March is definitely still winter. There will almost certainly be snow on the ground everywhere except southeast Alaska (Juneau). Late winter and early spring are one of our driest and sunniest times of year though, and the road conditions are usually improving, although there will be some snow and ice. With the frequently clear weather, March is one of the best times to see the northern lights. The best place to see them is up around Fairbanks, but they can sometimes be seen in the outskirts just north of Anchorage. You can expect temperatures in the 10s-30s around Anchorage, and possibly down to around -20 around Fairbanks. With the strengthening sun and calm winds though, that sounds worse than it is (usually..)

Although, March is outside our regular tourist season, there are some organized tours around that time of year for people who want to experience the winter landscape and northern lights (and lower prices than summer), and it is becoming more popular to come around then. Many of the people who come are from southeast Asia. You could also look into the train which runs between Anchorage and Fairbanks (and right past Denali National Park, though not much of it is accessible in winter) at least a couple times a week. It's kind of expensive, but it might be the best way to see what you want without driving. Maybe you could fly into Anchorage, take the train, and then fly out of Fairbanks? Unfortunately it's very unlikely to see any bears in the wild in March (most of them wake up some time in April).

https://www.adn.com/business-economy...ourists-jumps/
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Old 01-06-2019, 02:14 AM
 
Location: Wasilla, AK
2,584 posts, read 4,044,154 times
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In addition to the advice you get here at City-Data, you might also try posting at the TripAdvisor forum for visiting Alaska: https://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowForu...49-Alaska.html


If you are not comfortable driving, see if one Salmonberry's offerings will work: https://www.salmonberrytours.com/
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Old 01-06-2019, 10:38 PM
 
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I appreciate all your answers. It seems it is going to be cold... I will think about it. The good thing is that in March, Sun won't go down before 7 pm.
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Old 01-06-2019, 11:28 PM
 
Location: Washington State desert
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I agree with all of the above. March can be cold and snowy. (Though this winter has been mild so far, just now getting some extreme temps here in Jan)...

Even in Anchorage, breakup (when the rivers and streams run free from ice) usually happens in late March or early April.

There is a reason why a $60 hotel room in the winter goes for $240 in the summer! (4x more expensive)

Last edited by pnwguy2; 01-06-2019 at 11:53 PM..
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Old 01-07-2019, 03:09 PM
 
Location: interior Alaska
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March is an awesome time to visit. There are a bunch of events - Fur Rondy and the Iditarod start in Anchorage, dog sled sprint races and ice sculpture competitions in Fairbanks, various equinox celebrations, probably other stuff I'm not thinking off. It's not as cold and grim as Dec/Jan/March but it's still good for winter activities. Usually it's one of the better months for northern lights viewing. Your chances of seeing auroras would be much better up by Fairbanks than by Anchorage, both because of drier weather and because of the higher latitude.

Grizzly and black bears will be hibernating. They occasionally get up for a while but you're not likely to see them.
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Old 01-07-2019, 03:27 PM
 
Location: Southern Colorado
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March is still winter for the most part. Has its own beauty of course. I'd go for May myself unless I wanted to partake in wintry activities like snowmobiling.

Alaska's greatest beauty, in my opinion, is off the beaten path. Much would be snowed under in March by my estimation.

Then again, my knowledge of Alaska is garnered from nature films.
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Old 01-07-2019, 05:37 PM
 
Location: interior Alaska
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May in most of Alaska is brown and goopy.
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Old 01-07-2019, 05:46 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frostnip View Post
May in most of Alaska is brown and goopy.
I agree (though SE can be pretty nice during that month). March is a good time to visit plenty of stuff to do without having to deal with summer throngs of tourists.
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