Our trip started the end of April, lasted til the end of June, and included 10 days in Colorado...All in, we drove almost 12,000 miles. Than leads to the most important feature about driving to Alaska: it's a long way. We've all learned in school that Alaska is the largest state, maybe not noting along the way how large Canada is. However, the cold facts don't nearly translate to knowledge until you've been there. We saw all we expected and much more. Many times our horizon-to-horizon view was full of lakes, trees, mountains, and not a single man made object other than the road we were on. I'm an outdoorsman ith a great appreciation for nature. There's an awsome amount of nature to appreciate.
Going early, we missed most of the toursit crowd, and not inconsequently, most of the insect mob. It was also too early for the elk and moose to have antlers. But we also beat many of the road repair projects and so the pot holes and frost heave patches were out in abundance. We've had to have our windshield replaced, a tire replaced, and about a $1,000 to repair our camper from stress cracks. Had I known this would have happened, I'd still do it. The point is to be prepared for it.
Huge and exciting as it was, we'll probably not do the drive again, but will go back via boat and plane. We took the ferry from Skagway to Haines and Juneau, and although we saw a lot of scenery and wildlife, we still want to see the inside passage. We also didn't plan far enough ahead to get a flight to the North Slope. And since we were there in summer, we'll have to go back earlier or later to see the northern lights.
Our favorite things, besides just being there:
The dinner and show at the Malmute Saloon in Ester (near Fairbanks)
The dinner at Captain Pattie's in Homer
Hiking in Denali (although the clouds hid Mt McKinley all three days)
"Discovering" Wrangell-St. Elias National Park
The free entertainment at the Tok RV Park--Dave Stancliff & Floyd Seigler (Dave, we've about worn out the CD, especially the "Moose" track.)