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Old 12-09-2007, 12:24 AM
 
2 posts, read 9,028 times
Reputation: 10

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Quite by accident I discovered this site today and have enjoyed reading so many of the conversations! My husband and I are accepting a travel assignment. Due to what we have read we have elected to take a much needed vacation and drive up. Pretty concerned about the Alcan though. Is it treacherous in a 4x4 with an experienced driver in mid January? Any suggestions? And it appears that we don't need a passport to get thru Canada...is that correct???
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Old 12-09-2007, 12:31 AM
 
Location: Bethel, Alaska
21,368 posts, read 37,923,439 times
Reputation: 13901
The MILEPOST: FAQ-Alaska Highway Facts

How to Drive to Alaska in the Winter - ExploreNorth

The ExploreNorth Blog
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Old 12-09-2007, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Fountain Valley, CA
131 posts, read 531,863 times
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Mid Jan is a bad time to drive up. You very well could hit road closures and/or go long, long stretches without services. I've done it and it can be done, but I never hit bad weather.
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Old 12-09-2007, 09:35 AM
 
2 posts, read 9,028 times
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Hey! Thanks you two for responding so quickly. Ironically the suggestions made for traveling the Alcan were some of the same that my husband and I were discussing this morning. "I'm putting our lives in his hands"! HA Seriously...my major concern is the possibility of road closures and time you might "be stuck there". We have traveled thru Wyoming and Colorado in really bad weather and have done fine..but..the Alcan...is MUCH different. I think we are going to do it though! Life has become an adventure, the kids are grown and gone and we are FREE!! Kinda of... Anyway..February might not be a whole lot better would it? I have a travel nurse opportunity..my husband is a wildlife and sports photographer. So....why not! You can research until the cows come home and I have eye strain now! But imput from those that are there is great to have. Thanks again.
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Old 12-09-2007, 11:17 AM
 
Location: Dangling from a mooses antlers
7,308 posts, read 14,605,548 times
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I've driven it plenty of times in the winter. As long as you stay on the ALCAN and don't go off on the Cassiar you will be fine. Plenty of traffic summer, winter and fall...
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Old 12-09-2007, 03:16 PM
 
Location: Bethel, Alaska
21,368 posts, read 37,923,439 times
Reputation: 13901
I've driven the Alcan 13 times with the most recent drive in August. I've done 4 winter trips ranging from December through February. Like Stiff said, stay off the Cassiar, the stops there are far apart and much of the services are closed in winter. I enjoy the Alcan in winter, no RV's in the way but you have to be aware of the Semi trucks, they don't slow down on the road and watch out for the shoulders, the snow can suck you in. The Canadians take good care of the highway in the winter, they have a lot of equipment available and are out when it snows. They put small pea-gravel on the road for traction, slowing down when semi's come is a must, they throw the gravel at a high speed and can take out a windshield. Just take your time coming up and keep your tank on the upper end of half and you'll be fine.
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Old 12-10-2007, 02:44 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, Alaska
17,823 posts, read 23,344,303 times
Reputation: 6541
Quote:
Originally Posted by photog111 View Post
Quite by accident I discovered this site today and have enjoyed reading so many of the conversations! My husband and I are accepting a travel assignment. Due to what we have read we have elected to take a much needed vacation and drive up. Pretty concerned about the Alcan though. Is it treacherous in a 4x4 with an experienced driver in mid January? Any suggestions? And it appears that we don't need a passport to get thru Canada...is that correct???
As to your last question concerning passports, the Western Hemisphere Travel Initiative (http://travel.state.gov/travel/cbpmc/cbpmc_2223.html - broken link) says that by January 31, 2008 every US citizen who drives or takes water transport into Canada must have a valid government-issued photo ID (such as a driver's license) AND proof of citizenship (such as a birth certificate or proof of naturalization). They will not accept photocopies, only original documents.

There are other acceptable travel documents, and you should visit either the Department of State's Travel web site (Welcome to Travel.State.Gov) or the Department of Homeland Security Travel Security & Procedures web site (DHS | Travel Security & Procedures (http://www.dhs.gov/xtrvlsec/ - broken link)) for more detailed information.

Beginning in the summer of 2008 (a date yet to be determined) US passports will be required to enter Canada or re-enter the US from Canada via land or sea transport.
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Old 12-26-2007, 09:10 PM
 
Location: North Dakota
740 posts, read 1,966,896 times
Reputation: 541
Bring basic arctic survival gear in your truck just in case. You never know when a heavy blizzard will hit and you will have to stop for awhile. Things like warm blankets, dried food, small first aid kit etc are great things to have. Keep in mind it frequently gets -40+ through the Yukon so make sure your vehicle has been winterized accordingly. Other than that, have fun and like others have said...take your time. Oh, bring spare headlights in case a thrown rock breaks them. It actually happens often. On the bright side, the roads are much smoother in the winter due to the snow. Hope this helps.
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Old 12-29-2007, 12:17 AM
 
Location: Palmer, AK
88 posts, read 206,325 times
Reputation: 33
Hi Y'all! I wrote a while back when I found out we'll be going to Elmendorf after my husband returns from his year in Korea. After being given 3 different dates for his leaving to Korea, (one being in July which would have been PERFECT! We would have driven to AK in the summer!) the powers that be finally decided on Jan 2nd for his departure date! Which means we'll be driving to AK in Jan - Feb time frame! I've been reading what y'all wrote above & have to ask...how much harder do you think it will be with 2 horses along for the ride? ((Plus 3 kids, 2 dogs, & 1 cat!?!)) I'm kinda worried, to put it mildly! I've half a mind to save up & simply ship them by a commercial carrier! That is...if there ARE any horse transports that go that way in the winter! :?
Any & all thoughts or comments would be greatly appreciated!
Sincerely......& Best wishes for the New Year!
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Old 12-29-2007, 02:11 AM
 
Location: Fairbanks Alaska
1,677 posts, read 6,420,090 times
Reputation: 675
Bringing horses to Alaska in the dead of winter. Now that is an interesting question.

Try the following link, is my best guess!
http://www.alaskahorsejournal.com/
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