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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know this is a long time off, and not sure where tio post, but I'm trying to plan a single man road trip to.... Alaska from...Birmingham, Al. Next december. How fun. This is going to be my adventure of my life. I'm trying to accumulate and figure out the ebst place to go in AK, and things to do, so if any of you guys can give input, I'd appreciate it.
 

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I lived in Fairbanks for 3 years. Fairbanks is not a vacation spot. If I were you I would look into going to Anchorage and then make a trip to Denali. That's probably the most beautiful part of the state. Plus they have the Denali National Park where you can take a tour through the park, even ride a jeep through the park to see wildlife and scenery. Trust me you'll enjoy it.

December - February is the coldest time of year (-20 to -40 degrees). The best time to plan a vacation to Alaska is around April - May. That's when the temps get warmer but the snow is still on the ground. That's when all the skiers and snowboarders are out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'm really diggin the -20 -40 idea. I thought about Anchorage, b/c theres a Holiday Inn right there (not to mention the rates, I'm sure they will be low as the weather may be so harsh) and taking the trip to Denali, isnt there also another place close to Anchorage?

And what of my vehicle? I take it winter tires are a MUST. My trip may end up around February. Like I said, I'm going by myself. No roadies hah. 3 week vacation.
 

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Denali State Park is about 150 miles from Anchorage. And yes Wasilla is near Anchorage which is about 45 miles away. That's a fairly big place too and I'm sure you can find a hotel there. There are plenty in Anchorage and Wasilla.

As far as your vehicle yes snow/studded tires will probably be a smart thing especially if you've never driven icy roads. You're probably oing to have to get an engine block heater, oil pan heater, and a battery warmer before you get to AK. That way you can plug your vehicle in at night. Emergency kit wouldn't be a bad idea as well as stuff to keep warm in case of a break down.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
list of vehicle mods thus far includes:

Yakima Rack
Rally Innovations Light Bar
KC Lights
Engine Block Heater
Oil Pan Heater
Battery Warmer
Winter wheels and tires

This may sound pricey for just a road trip, but I can assure you it wont be the last. I'll probably take a nice cruise thru some other states as well.

Now, explain the stuff about the heaters/warmers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
this is a year from now... I'm taking huge planning and everything in consideration. my whole 2009 year is centered around this trip.
 

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The oil pan heater you would use one like the on ein the pic below. You can use another on elike that for the battery, you would just place it underneath. They also make battery blankets which is just a pad that you wrap around your battery. The engine block heater you can get from Mike at Hiblish. All three of these have 110v plugs so what you would do is get a 3-1 plug adapter (---E), don't know how else to picture it. You would plug all three heaters into that and run the plug through the lower grill. Then you want a long extenson cord so when you park at the motel or where ever you can plug the cord into the extension cord and plug it into an outlet. You will also want a windshield ice scraper which you can get at walmart. Hope that all makes sense lol.
 

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You're also going to want to change your coolant mixture, 50/50 will probably freeze. Depending on your motor oil weight, you may want to go one thinner cuz it will thicken up with the cold. This I found on Ft. Wainwright relocation website for the military.

Vehicles must be winterized! In order for your vehicle to start during winter months, you will need to plug it in. It is recommended that you start plugging your vehicle in when temperatures drop to 20 degrees and colder. Most parking lots on post have outlets. You will need to install, or have installed:
1. Engine block heater, battery blanket (blanket, band-aid or plate type) which should be the right length to go all the way around your battery OR an under battery heater, and you should consider an engine oil pan heater and a transmission heater.
2. A fifteen- foot extension cord (rated for extreme cold weather). Some people attach a testing light to the end of the cord to ensure the outlet you plug into is working. This is a good idea.
3. Change oil to 5W-30 and ensure antifreeze protection to -60 degrees F.
4. Change oil, gas and air filters. Always carry a spare belt, they snap easily in the cold.
5. Have your vehicle tuned up, grease door jams and place powdered graphite into door locks.
6. Repack non-drive wheel bearings with synthetic grease.
7. Select tires that will keep you within your comfort zone. Some examples are: all-season radials, snow tires, studded tires or you may elect to purchase a set of chains if you feel they are necessary.
Also remember you will be going through customs in Canada.

You will need a set of cold weather windshield wipers.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
The oil pan heater you would use one like the on ein the pic below. You can use another on elike that for the battery, you would just place it underneath. They also make battery blankets which is just a pad that you wrap around your battery. The engine block heater you can get from Mike at Hiblish. All three of these have 110v plugs so what you would do is get a 3-1 plug adapter (---E), don't know how else to picture it. You would plug all three heaters into that and run the plug through the lower grill. Then you want a long extenson cord so when you park at the motel or where ever you can plug the cord into the extension cord and plug it into an outlet. You will also want a windshield ice scraper which you can get at walmart. Hope that all makes sense lol.
Ive found a engine block heater. tank style. seems like it has a heater core to it, and you run your antifreeze thru it and it just flows warmed over antifreeze. seems simple enough. battery heater as well. you can wrap it around the battery, and then oil pan heater. does that go inside the pan or under it? that did confuse me.

As for the antifreeze, I'd just run 100% wouldnt you think?

I think things like the bearings and such are no biggie. shouldnt have to really fool with that. I would say replacing all belts wouldnt be bad idea, neither would be getting the CFM hose kit either :)
 

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Ive found a engine block heater. tank style. seems like it has a heater core to it, and you run your antifreeze thru it and it just flows warmed over antifreeze. seems simple enough. battery heater as well. you can wrap it around the battery, and then oil pan heater. does that go inside the pan or under it? that did confuse me.

As for the antifreeze, I'd just run 100% wouldnt you think?

I think things like the bearings and such are no biggie. shouldnt have to really fool with that. I would say replacing all belts wouldnt be bad idea, neither would be getting the CFM hose kit either :)
Yeah the oil panheater goes on the outside...siliconed to the pan.

Just have your antifreeze tested to -60 degrees. I wouldn't run 100%.

The engine block heater you want is one that replaces a freeze plug. It looks exactly like a freeze plug but has heating elements on it.

If you still have your owners manual look in there for winter oil weight it wil tell you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
shit, that sounds like a bitch.. the engine block heater that is. check google for the "ZeroStart" engine block heater and tell me what you think. I think it would suffice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
as far as heaters go. it seems like the most expensive thing I will buy is tires. the heaters and such really arent that expensive. I just did a little research and it wont be that expensive to get the car "ready" which doesnt include mods/ winter tires.
 

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When I lived in Alaska all I had on my car was the oil pan heater, engine block heater, battery warmer, coolant mixture to -60 degrees, and 5w-20 oil. I never had any problems for 2-1/2 years. As long as you remember to plug it in at night.

Also wat you can do is, depending on the temps in ND or MN or whatever route you take, wait until you get just before the canadian border and get it done there. It will be alot cheaper for you instead of trying to do it where the parts aren't available locally. NAPA will have the heater pads and everything else for super cheap, cheaper than online.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
When I lived in Alaska all I had on my car was the oil pan heater, engine block heater, battery warmer, coolant mixture to -60 degrees, and 5w-20 oil. I never had any problems for 2-1/2 years. As long as you remember to plug it in at night.

Also wat you can do is, depending on the temps in WA, wait until you get to WA and get it done there. It will be alot cheaper for you instead of trying to do it where the parts aren't available locally. NAPA in WA will have the heater pads and everything else for super cheap, cheaper than online.
well, I wont have anywhere to do the work, so I'd have to pay a shop. It seems as if it would be a trade off to do it all at home and test it at home a few weeks before I left too just to make sure its all in order.


Also, how heavy is the snow fall in dec.-feb? pretty rough? no one gets to enjoy it eh? just brutal I imagine.
 

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well, I wont have anywhere to do the work, so I'd have to pay a shop. It seems as if it would be a trade off to do it all at home and test it at home a few weeks before I left too just to make sure its all in order.


Also, how heavy is the snow fall in dec.-feb? pretty rough? no one gets to enjoy it eh? just brutal I imagine.
True....

The snowfall isn't that bad just too damn cold. Yeah when I was there it was too cold to go out and do anything. Most people stay indoors for the winter...
 
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