View Full Version : Alaska or West Coast Route 1?

06-14-2008, 08:19 AM
We are sitting here in Butte, MT for a few days. John is from Butte and has things to do. When we left John had a bad cold and now I am trying to recover from it. Bad headaches, bronchitis, etc.

When we left Phoenix, it was probably 110 and by the time we got to Utah and Idaho it was snowing and raining. It has been really cold here but is starting to warm up. It is the most beautiful I have ever seen Butte and the surrounding area at this time of the year a with snow on all the mountain tops.

Once I feel like traveling, which should be a couple days, we are trying to decide whether to continue on our trip to Alaska that we have planned for months or go over to Seattle and down the coast and stay at various spots a week or so. This is something we have never done.

We would save lots of money on diesel if we did not drive all the way to Alaska. The cheapest we have seen on our trip is right here in Butte at Flying J at 4.54 a gal.

I have been reading all the posts on the cost of fuel and its effects on you, and I can tell you we thought long and hard before we took off on this trip with the price of fuel. But we had planned for it and didn't want the fuel cost to deter us.

We are having a tough time decidingon whether to continue on the Alaska. Help us make a decision, especially those of you that have taken both trips. Thanks in advance for your help. Karen and John

06-14-2008, 08:38 AM
GO TO ALASKA! If you have wanted to go, by all means, "Go". It is unbelievable trip, scenery that you cannot see in the lower 48, it is truly the last frontier. I look forward to going again and so glad we did in 2006.

You don't know what is in store for the future, so I vote, Go for it. Also go through Banff and Jasper. It was well worth the trip.

06-14-2008, 09:20 AM
Come on up! Be sure to stop by Seward! I vote for Alaska!!!!

David and Jo-Anna
06-14-2008, 09:44 AM
Karen and John,

Alaska is terrific - do it!!!!!!!!!

06-14-2008, 11:19 AM

Decisions, decisions! Tough one to make. I've not done Alaska so can't do anything to help you there. It, however, is one of my dreams! One of these days!

In the meantime we have done the west coast thing. We've gone from Mexico to Canada along hwy 1 and 101. The Washington and Oregon coasts are not to be missed! They are spectacular and you MUST do them someday. Also the California North Coast is a must see also. So many unique places to see and visit. You can't go wrong either way you decide. Consider that fuel may never be this "low" for a long time, if ever!

Good luck on whichever direction you take!

Safe journeys!


06-14-2008, 11:35 AM
Head to Alaska, we leave Monday the 16th. Maybe we'll see ya on the road. Seward is one of our stops. Stacy

06-14-2008, 11:45 AM
Party in Seward!!!!!!!

06-14-2008, 02:37 PM
Head to Alaska, the gas/diesel prices will not go down by any significant amount. And are likely to increase. It is usually a trip of a lifetime with so many great views and wildlife. Besides you can always plan the west coast trip later as it would not be as far. Go For IT

06-14-2008, 05:17 PM
We put off going last year and the fuel is going to cost us more this year. We have debated what to do this year, but have decided to go anyway. It could be worse next year. Or it could be like the late 70s when we had to wait in line for fuel and stations running out of gas. We are going to leave the trailer in the US to save time, fuel and money.

Go while you have your health and can, who knows what the next year holds (or the next day for that matter, "Meet the Press" just won't be the same tomorrow)

bob n pam
06-14-2008, 07:02 PM

It is as wonderful as everyone says. ALASKA! ALASKA! ALASKA!


06-15-2008, 02:46 AM
Karen, don't even give it a second thought! Head for Alaska. The diesel prices will only go higher. Do it now and enjoy every minutes of it. Another good recommendation.....don't miss Banff and Jasper. Awesome! Have a great trip!

06-15-2008, 04:16 AM
Heck John and Karen, Go to Alaska for a month, Then come down through WA, OR and CA coast. You Can do it all in one summer, depending on your free time.....Yeah, Go to Seward, I love it there, party with Bernie and Tammy. Hook up with David and Joanna and have a truly Northern Rally. Stop in and say hi to the guys at Simmons RV, see Greg in Service, if you need something, nice folks to say the least. Stay in Anchorage ONLY if you want the big city life. We had a saying when I lived there that Anchorage was 200 miles south of Alaska. Take train to Denali from Anchorage or do the drive, stop in Talkeetna for the day, ride the steamboat down the Chena river in Fairbanks and see the Susan Butcher kennels, You will love Alaska. By the way, theres no sleeping during the summer months in the northern climes. Go fishing on the Kenai and grab a charter from Homer and fish for Halibut. If you are there over the fourth of July, definitely do it in Seward and watch the fools run up and down Mt Marathon, Crazy guys and gals and maybe even catch a glimpse of Elvis or the bird man. Seward Sealife museum is worth a peak, kind of expensive as I remember. The Army says "Be all you can be" I say, when in Alaska "Do all you can do" Don't skimp on anything. Dinner at the Captain Cook hotel is great also. Pick up souvenirs at the Bush Company....Watch out for moose on city streets and don't go walking alone on the hillside unless you want a bear encounter.....If I sound a little over the top, I am. I guess after living there for 14 years you kind of miss it after a while, although we are not ready to go back yet as we are still enjoying our travels....

John, just point that Montana North and go fo it. You won't regret it..........

06-16-2008, 09:00 AM

We are about half way up the Alaska Highway. This is our 4th trip to Alaska but, the first time we have had the time to drive.

As an Ex-Californian I strongly suggest that you do to Alaska. As expensive as fuel is (highest so far $6.25 per gallon) fuel will never be cheaper.


06-16-2008, 06:00 PM
Well we decided to head out for Alaska. Made it to Lethbridge,AB at the Bridgeview RV Park. This is an excellent Passport America Park. We drove a few extra miles today so that we would have less to drive tomorrow. We are checking into the Tunnel Mountain Campground at Banff tomorrow. This will be my 4th trip to the Banff area and Lake Louise, but the first time to drive the whole parkway all the way to Jasper. we will then wind our way up to Dawson Creek. The Banff area is the most beautiful I have ever seen. But I have to tell you the Rocky Mountains in Montana were awesome with the recent snow on them.

Thanks for all your proding to go north. I am hoping we will still go home down the West Coast because I know that area is very beautiful.

Hope to see some of you along the way.

This park is pretty full, but we only saw 3 or 4 rvs all day. We have not made reservations at rv parks and I think there will be availability.

Thanks again, Karen

06-16-2008, 06:33 PM
quote:Originally posted by kwolff7

This park is pretty full, but we only saw 3 or 4 rvs all day. We have not made reservations at rv parks and I think there will be availability.

Thanks again, Karen

I hate to make reservations because it ties you in to certain dates. However, we have found on the Alaska Highway there aren't a lot of towns and there seem to be several RV Caravans. We were turned away at one place because they had two caravans there. We made reservations the next two stops and had caravans at both RV Parks. I called Whitehorse today and our first choice had no room due to one or more caravans. If there are only one or two RV Parks or campgrounds where you think you want to stay it might be best to call a day ahead.

06-16-2008, 06:48 PM
Grant Thanks for replying and giving us a heads up.........How are you calling ahead............does your cell phone cost $1 a minute? What campgrounds have you liked so far.

Looking for suggestions after we leave Jasper. Thanks

06-18-2008, 04:56 PM
Thank you for the campground info.* We are traveling in our own little caravan of 3 rv's.* See ya maybe up north.* Stacy

David and Jo-Anna
06-18-2008, 05:12 PM
Karen, We bought a phone card and made calls from a public telephone. Our Verizon worked in Skagway and here in Tok.

06-19-2008, 06:07 AM
quote:Originally posted by kwolff7

Grant Thanks for replying and giving us a heads up.........How are you calling ahead............does your cell phone cost $1 a minute? What campgrounds have you liked so far.

Looking for suggestions after we leave Jasper. Thanks

We got the Verizion Nationwide and Canada plan before leaving Great Falls Montana. That worked until we left Fort Nelson. At Liard Hot Spring I bought a $10 Telus calling card. (For some reason the pay phones at Liard Hot Springs only take calling cards or collect calls. We have been calling a day ahead for reservations.

After Jasper we took Highway 40 to Grande Prairie and stayed at Camp Tamarack RV Park. Dawson Creek, Fort Nelson and Watson Lake only have two RV Parks each. How crowded they are depends on if there are RV Caravans in the RV Parks. On a "caravan day" they are packed. Once the caravans leave they are deserted until the next caravans arrive. We stayed at Mile Post 0 in Dawson Creek, West End RV Park in Fort Nelson and Campground Services in Watson Lake; believing them to be the better of our two choices in each town. At Laird Hot Springs there is only the Provincial Park and the Liard Hot Springs Lodge and RV Park. The "lodge" RV Park isn't much but, I don't think we could have gotten into a site at the Provincial Park.

See you in Alaska

06-19-2008, 04:57 PM
thanks for all your help. I have calling cards with me........that need to be used anyway....so will just need to make do until we get to Alaska. Karen