Wednesday, March 14, 2007

North to Alaska

There's a tired old joke out there about Alaska being twice as big a Texas, which most of us have heard by now. But, did you know that at low tide we could cut Alaska into thirds and make Texas the fourth-largest state?

Seriously, though, everything in the North Country is on a scale most people can't begin to imagine unless they see it for themselves. And by far the best way to get a feel for the size and scope Alaska is to first cross the vastness that is Canada in your RV. Just getting to the start of the Alaska Highway in Dawson Creek, British Columbia, is more adventure than many RVers will experience in a lifetime to say nothing of the 1,500 or so miles of the highway itself that leads from Dawson Creek to Fairbanks. I've driven the route more than 30 times now and never tire of it. I am, in fact, eagerly looking forward to doing it again later this year. I still consider the Alaska Highway the last great driving adventure left in North America.

On any trip to Alaska by RV, getting there has certainly got to part of the fun. I see all too many people every year rushing along the Alaska Highway so they can spend more time in Alaska. Sometimes they tell me they want to get to Alaska for the splendid fishing. And, indeed, the fishing in Alaska can be fantastic. Yet, in rushing up the highway to Alaska, these people drive past some of the most outstanding angling opportunities in North America. The same holds for scenery, for wildlife viewing, and for just about anything that strikes your fancy. As splendid of a destination as Alaska is, I urge you to allow time for the other, equally spectacular things enroute.

In the weeks and months ahead on this blog, we'll get into the nuts and bolts of driving the Alaska Highway, we'll look at some prime spots for RVers to visit along the way in Canada and in Alaska itself, and I'll probably engage in at least a little story-telling from more than 35 years of driving the Alaska Highway and visiting every place in Alaska accessible by road. I invite you to come along for the ride, and if you think I'm wrong about something or you have information to add about what I have written, please e-mail me at rdcomm@gmail.com.

For those of you who are planning a trip to Alaska this year, next year, or even farther in the future, I've just released the latest version of my book, The Alaska Highway: An Insider's Guide. It will literally take you from your front door anywhere in the United States and Canada to Alaska and back. It's available online at http://www.rvbookstore.com/.

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