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Discussion Starter #1
I'll be retired in the next 3 weeks:), so, I can finally plan some longer adventures. The boss and I are starting to plan a trip to Alaska from S-Cal. Google shows it about 3400 miles to Whittier from my home. I've been reading as much Google/forum posts as possible, however, I have a whole bunch more questions for those that have made this trip, I sure could use your experienced advice.

My plan, at this point, is to ride via S-Cal to Bellingham to Denali to Whittier and take a Ferry back to Billingham via the inland passage and on home via the PCH. This 'plan' is very open at this time and my departure point in Alaska is not fixed in stone. I'm waiting on replies from the Ferry service as to the route itineraries. I've also logged into Milepost.

Some practical questions;
1. Should I plan on replacement tires/oil change in Alaska.
2. Whats the best month to avoid wet and squidos?
3. Any mods rx for the Wing?
4. Are there enough motels that I don't need to reserve, should I bring a tent?
5. What kinda miles are reasonable per day.
6. Should I carry extra fuel?
7. What am I missing?
 

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I just got back from Ak 10 days ago. 9,120 miles on the bike and about 400 on water taking the inside passage ferry. I was gone four weeks and started and finished in Mi. The roads getting there were hard on the tires and I replaced my rear at 7500 miles. I started with a new set of Brigstones on my 96 1500. My bike is not modified other than rack on my rear trunk. I was riding two-up with my wife on the back. I did not change my synthitic oil that I use in the bike. You should not have a problem with motels but I would call ahead a day or two as I traveled. I did not carry a tent or sleeping bags. I did not carry extra fuel and did not pass up many gas stations. I think July is the best month and carry a good rain suit and warm riding clothes. I have been all over the US on many trips but this one topped them all. DoubleR
 

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Great, thanks for replying. Did you need to make reservations for the Ferry? Where did you start/finish the Ferry at? Did you get the tire changed in Alaska? Where? What percentage did you get rain, what were ave temps? anything you needed that you should have brought?
 

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I reserved the ferry before I left Mi. I rode it from Hanes to Prince Rupert. It cost 688 for two people, my wing, and a small cabin. We got on 2pm on thrus. and got off it Sat morn at 5am. A great ride and the food and drinks were resonable. I would recomend a reservation but there were other bikes that got on without one. It seems like it rained almost every day and I wore my rain suit most of the time. After I got off the ferry I noticed some cuts on the inside of my tread on the rear tire. I rode to Mt. untill I could get a tire for it. It was Sat and couldn't get much done with shops being closed on Sunday and Mondays. I would plan ahead for a tire change. Not to mention it cost alot as I normally do my own and buy tires on line. I had a rear tire blow a few years back with my wife on board and I don't want to experience that again. I would be more than happy to offer you more info. or talk to you about the trip. You sound like me, I just retired a year and a half ago want want to do the things I couldn't while working.
 

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Congrats on your retirement! I retired 4 1/2 years ago & it seems like yesterday. Enjoy!
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Well, I just received the prices for the Ferry. Two passengers, a 2p cabin, and bike from Whittier to Bellingham via the inland route, about 4 days...about $2200. Yup, sounds like a lot, and it is, but, I'll be doing it anyway. More than likely, I'll not pass this way again, so.

I've decided to make some modifications to my bike prior to the trip. I'll be adding a belly pan and looking into some sort of 'bra' to help protect the front.

I'm also going to add a charging port (always on) in the trunk, since I'll have it apart anyway adding a Comagination brake flashing unit.

I'm still hoping someone can give me an idea of a reasonable daily mileage. I.e. In S-Cal 3-400 mile days are no problem in 4-5 hours.
 

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I read a thread a few years ago bout a guy and his wife who went up there and set up a tent on the deck of the ferry and no one said anything. They got the privacy of a tent to sleep without the price of a cabin.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yes, actually, Milepost has a photo of tent on the deck on their opening page. Kinda cool.
My wife brought up a good point. My original plan was to ride to Whittier than Ferry back to Bellingham. The issue with that is I'd need to make Whittier come hell or high water by the sailing date. If anything happened on the road or if we just wanted to side track we'd always have that deadline to meet. She suggested we ride to Bellingham, Ferry to Whittier, than ride down to home. I like it.
 

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I averaged anywhere from 400-600 miles a day on my trip. I did'n't think we were pushing too hard but you may want to plan on alittle less. A couple of the 600 mile days was due to getting a motel or a place to spend the night. When the going was not so good 400 miles was plenty in a day. We started out at 6 am a few times but 7am was about the norm. We would be in the motel by 5-6 in the afternoon. I too did not like having to be at the ferry dock at a exact day and time. We gave ourselfs two days to get to Hanes from Seaward which was a 1000 mile drive. The first 250 miles was in some of the hardest rain I've riden in. But couldn't wait it out so we had to go to get to the ferry in time. So your wife might have a good point in doing the ferry first. But for me it was a nice break after a lot of ridding with still anyother 3500 miles to get home. I don't think they would say a word on the ferry if you set up a small tent on deck. Some people would just lay out a sleeping bag off in the corner somewhere and no one seemed to both them.
 
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