Sherman, parked for the night at Ridgecrest Baptist Church, Madison, Mississippi. Photo taken yesterday!
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Clinton, Mississippi.

Where are they going next? Rocky Springs Campground on the Natchez Trace Parkway.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Drive to the Arctic Ocean

We have some campers visiting the park who are from Whitehorse, Yukon Territories. We had spoken on the phone when they made their reservations here, and I had mentioned how we wanted to drive up there in the motorhome someday.

She had offered to bring some tourist info down with them, and they were here this weekend.

I know that most Americans have a goal to visit Alaska, and many of them do so in a motorhome. But we are Canadian, so we want to visit Yukon Territories. If we happen to make it into Alaska during the same trip, then so be it... but exploring Yukon and Northwest Territories would be our goal.

So while I was looking at the paperwork they gave me, I started looking at maps and doing some research online to see just how far north you can drive in a motorhome.

Currently in Canada, you can drive as far as Inuvik, Northwest Territories in the summer. In the winter, they have had an ice road that goes to Tuktoyaktuk.

In Alaska, you can drive on an industrial road that was built for pipeline access in the 1970's. It's a rough road, and it's slow going but you can make it... all the way to the pipeline town of Deadhorse, Alaska. You have to be on a tour to actually access the coast of the Arctic Ocean.

Location of both Deadhorse, Alaska and Tuktoyaktuk, Northwest Territories.

But the situation is about to change in Tuktoyaktuk. 

The Canadian government has spent the last four years building a year round highway from Inuvik to Tuktoyaktuk giving the summer tourist the opportunity to drive right to the Arctic Ocean. It is scheduled to open in November of this year!

As it is, many people go to Yukon and Alaska, but the furthest north they make it is Fairbanks, Alaska. If we're going to do it, it's going to be all the way north!

Off to the north!

For a few years now, we've said that the first trip we're going to do when we stop working for the summer is a road trip in the motorhome up to the north. We haven't yet decided when that's going to be, but it's still the first thing that's on the agenda!

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20 comments:

  1. Nice. I read the book Alaska. Pretty interesting but fiction based on some facts. My grandson in law worked as a policeman in Barrow, Alaska for a year. He moved back to Wasilla, AK beginning of 2017. I've never been to Fairbanks but have been to Denali Nat'l Park...awesome trip. Saw grizzle bears in the wild for the very first time. I had only seen grizzlies on TV and I don't go to zoos (I don't like animals in captivity). Anyway, from some RVers' blogs I read the roads in areas are pretty rough but it can be done apparently.

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    1. We have seen pictures and heard so many great things about Alaska, Yukon and the Northwest territories that we know we want to visit them. We can't wait to see all the wildlife that can be seen so frequently up there. Yes, we have heard that the roads can be rough but if you take your time and don't rush, it shouldn't be too bad, lots of people do it!

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  2. How exciting and funny that you mention it. We've been studying about the Yukon Gold Rush and now I've been wanting to head up that way! That would be awesome to make it all the way to the Arctic. We live beneath Whitehorse Mt. ;) Not the Canandian Whitehorse, the Washington one :)

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    1. It would definitely be an adventure and it is a place that we have had on our "To travel too" list for a long time. We can't wait until we can actually do it!

      I bet Whitehorse Mt, in Washington is a lovely sight to see and to live under. :-)

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  3. WE did the Dempster Hwy in 2009 with our 33 ft Class A Motorhome, took 2 days.got to Inuvik June 21, huge celebration with the inuit. We stayed in the quite nice RV park. Flew up to Tuktiuktut,and back up the McKenzie River in a small cabin cruiser, to Inuvik. Awsome trip . Would do it again in a heart beat. Ask about the Ice House in Tuk??

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    1. We will have to plan to get to Inuvik for around that time then so that we can catch the huge celebration. It would take us almost a week just to do the Dempster Highway though!

      Sounds like you had a fantastic trip and we can't wait to do something similar. :-)

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  4. Cool! I'm looking forward to pictures of you swimming in the Arctic Ocean. :c)

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    1. I hate cold water.... but I might do it just to say that I did!

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  5. Even as a child you hated cold water!

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  6. Our first RV trip ever in our 5 th wheel was in 97 to Alaska. We covered the state with stops in Valdez, Anchorage, Fairbanks and the " North pole". Sorry I forgot to mention " Chicken" , Alaska.
    Never listen to anyone who has never been there. I was told ( by the nay Sayers ) to take extra fuel and tires and to be prepared to replace my windshield as it would be cracked. I dismissed the BS. I never ever got a chip in the windshield. It was a great trip and I may return someday

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    1. Bet it was neat to have gone back then, I am sure things have changed quite a bit in the last 20 years, perhaps a little more touristy and better roads seeing so many people are heading up that way nowadays.

      Good to hear your thoughts on the "naysayers" about all the extra fuel, tires and windshield. We don't intend on driving like we are in a NASCAR race so I am sure like you, the chances are slim in having any problems. We will do lots of research before we do a trip like that anyways.

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  7. Wonder if you guys followed "living in my car" blog, she did the Dempster highway by herself in a small 24 ft motorhome. the road is hell but in the end she said totally worth it. quite the adventure!

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    1. No we haven't read it, Kevin said that he has heard of it though. Everyone's opinion of road conditions can differ so much and a lot has to do with the speed that you travel on some of these roads. We have heard that they can be bad but it doesn't stop people from doing the drive and if we were to do it, we would take our time and have shorter driving days that way it won't wear you down so much or your vehicle.

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  8. On our trip with the kids in 94, we drove up the Dempster as far as the Arctic Circle!

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    1. Very cool, that must have been quite the adventure back then, especially with children.

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  9. We are starting to think about doing Alaska next year. Interesting about the new road to Tuk. Might have to look into that.

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    1. I know that we are wanting to do in it sometime within the next few years as well and yes, that new road to Tuktoyaktuk looks like an interesting one. :-)

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  10. Ohmygosh, driving up to the Arctic Ocean sounds wonderful -- it would be an awesome trip. Can we tag along? I tell you, the Arctic Ocean is one whale of a long distance from Nevada City, California! Maybe I'll Google it !!!

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    1. We think it would be an awesome trip too! :-)

      Definitely a long one but we think it would be worth it. I have seen posts from people that have driven to Alaska and they were starting in Florida. There are also people that have driven from Alaska all the way to the furthest point south that they can in Argentina.

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