Thread: Alaska Primer
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Old 05-08-2012, 07:57 AM   #19
Heavy Cruiser
mpenner's Avatar
Joined: Dec 2008
Location: Centerburg, OH
Oddometer: 828
Originally Posted by Alcan Rider View Post
Learn to read you won't need a GPS.
I was planning on bringing my GPS because it has a traffic receiver that helps me avoid rush hour traffic jams. Are you suggesting that I won't need that either?

Your primer was helpful, but I think that you left out some information, for instance:

1. How do Alaskans feel about Americans? Is it safe for Americans to travel to Alaska?
2. How long is my tourist visa good for if I enter Alaska with a US passport? Where is the US embassy in Alaska?
3. What language is spoken in Alaska? Where can I purchase a phrase book so that I can get help in an emergency, phrases like "Where can I get a latte?" In what languages are the road signs?
4. On what side of the road is it customary to drive in Alaska?
5. Is is safe to drink the water?
6. What is the exchange rate between US dollars and Alaskan money? Are there places to exchange money at the border crossing?
7. What vaccines should I get before traveling to Alaska?
8. When should I travel the Dalton in order to avoid rush hour traffic? Will the Starbucks along the highway be open during those hours?
9. Why doesn't Alaska stay on daylight savings time during the winter so that the days will be longer like they are in the summer?

These questions were inspired by a conversation that I had with a co-worker (who also rides) that went something like this:

Me: Did you hear that I am going to Alaska this summer?
Co-Worker: How are you going to get your bike there?
Me: I am going to ride it.
Co-Worker: You mean you can ride all the way there?
Me: Yes
Co-Worker: I did not think that there was any land connecting us to Alaska.
Me: Well, there is. It is a little place called Canada. Maybe you have not heard of it.

Seriously, I can't wait for this trip. I have had maps of Alaska plastered on my office walls for a couple of years. My original plan was to take a leave of absence for a couple of months next summer, but a couple of friends were coming up for D2D this summer for 30 days, so I am coming along with them. The difficult part of planning for this trip is deciding what parts of AK to leave out in the short time that we have.

I really appreciate how helpful and welcoming the Alaska residents are on this forum to us noob's and this primer and the other information on this site has been really helpful. I can't wait to meet those of you that are coming to D2D.

I do have one serious question. I have a map of the RS2477 trails in AK and have done a little research about them. Are any of these trails ridable or are they just a line on a map that does not really exist? Even if some of them are ridable, I assume that it would be on a much smaller bike than a V-Strom.

2001 KLR 650
2003 V-Strom DL1000
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