If you’re considering a road trip, take a walk on the wild side and drive up the Alaskan highway, or Alcan. Alaska may not be the first place that pops into your head when you think of a motor home vacation, but that’s why it might be one of the best.
The 1,543 miles of the Alaskan highway may seem intimidating, and while the weather can be rough, if you go during the right time and exercise caution, you could end up with one of the most memorable trips of your life. The Alaskan highway is dotted with helpful amenities and locals. Grocery stores are ample and include free RV dumps and some include electricity, to keep everything in your motor home running. Locals are often friendly to tourists, offering advice and tips on how to safely navigate the icy roads.
The people you meet in Alaska will also make for a unique road trip experience. The extreme climate means that people have to work together and be tough in order to survive. The camaraderie there is unlike anywhere else in the United States. If you’re very particular about safety, the highway is now all asphalt and has been reconstructed at many points to make for a smoother drive. During frost heaves, ice forms and thaws, creating ruptures in the highway surface.
These are repaired often, but you might still hit them occasionally on your trip. Being attentive can help you spot them before getting your RV caught. Staying alert and driving safely are enough to help you navigate the twisting roads. Switching drivers can also add ease to the trip.
Gas is readily available at reasonable intervals along the Alcan, but stations can sometimes close early and open late. Try and fuel up before nightfall. Be sure that your RV has had a recent engine check and oil change. Also check your tire pressure often as well as the spare.
The biggest threat the Alcan poses is to your wheels, so treat them well. It would probably be wise to even have an extra full-sized spare handy for your motor home. You can never have too many tires.
The highway gets busy with tourists in the summer, but the weather is ideal, ranging from cool to warm. September and May are less crowded and you’ll only experience a slight dip in climate. There will be many stops, campsites, and sights to check out along the way.
Some highlights include many golf courses, the world’s largest glass beehive, Williston Lake. But one of the greatest joys of driving a recreational vehicle through the Alcan is experiencing some of the most untouched wilderness in the world. A trip through the Alcan via RV will be a memorable, adventurous experience. It’s a great way to break away from the traditional (and bland) road trips to Las Vegas or the Grand Canyon. If you really want to see some wild beauty from the inside of your motor home, give the Alaskan highway a try.