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Old 03-25-2016, 02:36 PM   #1
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PDX to Alaska Summer 2017

We are in the early planning process for a trip next summer 2017. We are planning to take about a month and head up to Alaska from the Portland OR area. There will be two SMBs making this voyage. My wife will only be able to take two weeks off for the trip, so she is going to fly into and out of Anchorage. We are thinking about July/August

Ideas so far for places to go see:

Prudhoe Bay
Kenai Peninsula
Denali National Park
McCarthy
???

Activities:

Kayaking
Scuba Diving ( hopefully north of the Arctic Circle )
Hiking
Hot springs
Photography
???


For you SMBers that have gone up there or live there already. What do you recommend or maybe more importantly Not recommend with this time frame.

I am hoping that this is a first trip of many heading north.

Thanks for any advice.
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Old 03-25-2016, 02:50 PM   #2
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:04 PM   #3
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There are a few trip reports on the site. The one that comes to mind was a member who didn't have a good time with their kids and the bugs but I don't know who that was. Mike did a great trip report worth looking at:
http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/for...pert-3248.html
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Old 03-25-2016, 03:36 PM   #4
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You can also look at my thread "VivaLaVida in Alaska"... ;-)
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Old 03-25-2016, 06:27 PM   #5
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Here's the rest of my trip report from the trip daveb referenced:

http://www.sportsmobileforum.com/for...7-on-3255.html

If possible, I would head up the Dalton Highway. And, if you make it to Prudhoe Bay, take the tour of the facilities - it's the only way to get to the Artic Ocean. You MUST arrange your tour in advance - I think this is the contact info for the tour:

Prudhoe Bay Hotel Tours, oilfield tours from Deadhorse, (907) 659-2449

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Old 03-25-2016, 06:46 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Pschitt View Post
You can also look at my thread "VivaLaVida in Alaska"... ;-)
How did I forget that one, your trip report was inspiring as well as a great off road adventure.
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Old 03-25-2016, 08:03 PM   #7
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First thing, get a copy of the Milepost and start studying. A month is almost enough time to see Alaska, but you will never be able to see everything. I'd say you don't want to miss the Dempster hwy, Laird hot springs, Trapper Ray's, the Top of the world highway, or Dawson city, but they aren't even in Alaska, just on the way there. As you head down the Top of the World to the AK border, check out the Jack Wade gold dredge and don't forget to stop at Chicken (named that because they couldn't spell ptarmigan). The haul road to Prudhoe is pretty busy and dusty and Prudhoe it self is rather industrial, so be sure to take the tour to see the good stuff. Stop at Creamers field in Fairbanks on the way to or from the haul road, and just outside of town in Fox stop at the Howling Dog Saloon for a beer. Between Fairbanks and Anchorage is Danali. You need reservations to camp there, and you can't drive in without a permit. Anchorage is like any big city, but with spectacular scenery just outside of town. The Keni penninsula is a nice drive, a side trip to Seward and the Sea life center is great. Take a boat trip to see the Glaciers from there (Keni Fjords tours) or go out and catch a monster halibut. From there, you could drive to Haines or Skagway and ride an historic steam power railway up the mountain, then catch the ferry to Juneau and back to Bellingham. If you have used up all your time and need to get back, it's not that far to PDX. I once rode my motorcycle from Anchorage to S.F. in 3.5 days. It wasn't real fun, but I needed to get back to work. Expect it to be hot, cold, raining, clear and don't forget the bug juce. Bug screens on the windows will really help. Be aware though, that once you have been, you will want to go back and see more and more. I rode back 5 times before I moved there for good. Have a great trip..............
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Old 03-26-2016, 02:49 AM   #8
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... Be aware though, that once you have been, you will want to go back and see more and more.
I agree Jeff, already missing it so much!
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Old 03-26-2016, 02:50 AM   #9
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How did I forget that one, your trip report was inspiring as well as a great off road adventure.
No worries Dave.
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Old 03-26-2016, 08:21 AM   #10
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PDX to Alaska Summer 2017

All great stuff so far and lots of things to enjoy on the way up. We made the voyage in the summer of '14 when we met up with several others, including Mike, in Denali. We took the ferry out of St George and I drove back through Dawson, top of the world, chicken....Great trip, looking forward to going back for sure, maybe we'll join you next summer! If your wife only has 2 weeks, you will need to prioritize those things you want to do together, a tough one for sure! McCarthy/Kennicot while on a must see list is too far to access and do all the other stuff while with your wife, but def head out there, just make sure your tires and spare are in good shape and air down for that road out there.
Denali-get your permits and slot on the bus, we all camped at Teklanika river, but you can make it in on the early bus to just sightsee/hike for the day. The village outside the park is nothing great and not much in way supplies, so grab your groceries before you go up. Talkeetna is a nice little town on the way to Denali to stop and grab a lunch and check out some eclectic shops, it's also an alternative place to hop on a flight seeing tour of Denali/McKinley with Talkeetna air. The Kenai peninsula is amazing, the towns, rivers, salmon run, scenery, it's all there. Homer and Seward are must see's. Both offer fishing tours and sightseeing boat tours. Out of Homer, rainbow connection tours takes you out to Seldovia with wildlife and bird watching stops along the way, whales! Then there's the grizzly grounds of Katmai and Kodiak island, accessible by air out of Homer. Seward has the Kenai fjords tours and amazing halibut and salmon fishing. A stop along the Kenai river for some fishing with a guide, lots of options there. Check out Salmonfest music festival in Ninilchik beginning of Aug, missed it when I was there, but looks like fun, still worth a stop.
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