Alaska has been on our radar for awhile now. And somewhere toward the end of last year we just started telling people we were going to Alaska, soon. And then dates started being adlibbed and somehow as we told more and more people, dates started becoming more and more etched in stone. Now it looks like we are really truly going, with a departure date of July 11th … give or take a day or two. Planning the Alaska Roadtrip has been easier than we thought with good resources in friends, books and the Internet!
Now, we aren’t big planners, in fact, we aren’t planners at all. But, when it comes to driving in upwards of 7,000 miles over a period of 3-4 months, with 10 kids in tow, we decided we had to have a vague idea of what we were going to do.
We were advised of the MilePost publication. Hands down, the legendary, the all encompassing Alaska trip planner and Alaska travel guide. It has all the beta on the highways, roads, ferries, lodging, recreation, sighseeing, attractions and services along the Alaska Highway to and within Alaska.
This is the holy grail of finds. As are the plethora of friends who have stepped up to give us some serious personal insight into our trip, telling us what stops they think are mandatory and which ones are pure tourist traps.
After spending quite a lot of time (for us) doing all the pre-planning that y’all do for all your trips, Dan & I both knew this information was absolutely worth sharing with y’all.
Now, while we will be sharing so much ALASKA with you, by no means should you take this as the ULTIMATE Alaska trip guide. No, I think along the way you’ll see more of what we wished we knew or wished we’d planned for. For now, though, we want to share with you what we have planned for and what we have thought of … and maybe some of y’all, who have been before, can holler at us if we are way off base on any thoughts or plans!
Definitely, if you are curious about our Alaska adventures, I highly recomment thta you bookmark this article and follow along. It will be informative, but also entertaining, I’m sure. I mean, how many other people have taken a 4 month family roadtrip to Alaska with 2 adults, 10 kids, an added friend or two, 2 cats and a dog?
This in intended to be a living document that will grow and change as we narrow down our destinations, our timeline, etc…or maybe nothing will change and we will just wing it? Who knows what time will bring, eh?
Regardless, we will be bringing Alaska to you all via our KelloggShow website, Social Media and Youtube. And when it’s all said and done, we have a huge surprise for our friends, readers and fans.
Are ya ready for this? We plan to release a documentary from start to finish of our entire trip. All the trials and tribulations, all the amazing scenery, the incredible treks and glaciers and wildlife.
In addition we will be filling our website, social media and youtube channels with so much Alaska content.
- We will post regular blogs and videos about RV prep and issues that might (will) arise during our 4 month trek.
- We will inform you of our favorite Alaska trip gear and gadgets
- We will aprise you of all our epic Alaska trip tips (discovered along the way)
- We will post Blogs and Videos of Absolute Must-See locations
As soon as we take off, we will post an interactive map that will allow you to follow our adventures. Where we stop, where we stay and for how long.
Right now, if you have any stops you think we would love or extended stays that you recommend, by all means, please let us know. And, if you live in the Yukon Territory or Alaska and would love to chill, hang out, adventure, go crabbing, fishing, flying, hiking … anything, holler! We’ll bring the party and you can show us your fave local spot and maybe even make it into our Documentary?!?!
Our Alaska Plans
July 14th -ish Start Date
This is the absolute earliest we could get out of Colorado. With all the kayaking competitions and visiting relatives in early July, the 9th is absolutely the earliest, and then we had packages that we were trying to get delivered that kept getting hung up. We settled on July 11th, but then life hit one of our kids hard and we are postponing our trip for at least one week so we can be here to support and love them for as long as they need us too. Family first, above all things.
So, when we finally hit the road, our first stop is in Salt Lake City, UT. A half day at Temple Square, where we will eat a delicious meal at the Garden Restaurant and then take a free tour of the Beehive House.
Afterward, we will probably hit up a local Walmart to rest our weary eyes and then in the early am head to Cascade, ID and play around at Kelly’s Whitewater Park and paddle a bunch of rivers in that area. We have good friends in Boise and Garden Valley who we plan to hook up with as well, and a stay at the Ashley Inn in Cascade is an absolute must!
Maybe stay one week and head North to Kellogg, ID (for obvious reasons) and check out Coeur D’Alene…two places we have always wanted to see.
First Canadian Stops
Our first solidly Canadian stop will be Radium Hot Springs in a beautiful town at the South Entrance of Kootenay National Park. You can bet that we will already be ready for the healing and soothing powers of natural hot springs. But not only that, we can pull out our kayaks and run some Class II/III rivers in the Kootenay National Park.
From here we are going to visit Banff and Lake Louise intermittently as we camp out in Kananaskis, AL for the Canadian Whitewater Nationals late July, early August. We are looking forward to catching up with friends we haven’t seen since Memorial Day.
While in Kananaskis we will drive into Banff and to lake Louise for day trips. And we absolutely want to hike Ha Ling Peak in Canmore. We are told it’s a short climb up to a peak just above the town, amazing vistas up and down the valley make for killer photo opps! Count us in!
But, now we have some questions. Campgrounds have been booked for months, if not years, apparently … leaving nothing for those of us with spontaneity in our veins and no cash cow to tap into.
Also, what if our RV breaks down? What if we decide we love a place and want to stay longer? Or, unlikely, but possible, the total opposite? How do people who make solid plans deal with these types of instances?
We’ve heard and read that it’s totally acceptable to pull over anywhere and camp in your RV. Is this actual reality or a pipe dream?
If we are in Alaska until late September, is there a chance we will get to see the Northern Lights? Do we run the risk of getting snowed in and spending the winter? Would love any feedback locals have.
We are completely devoid of knowledge in this realm of sports. We have the vessels, we can fish from our Shaboomee SUP’s or our Jackson Kayaks, or even from shore. What we don’t know is anything about fishing gear. Perhaps you could enlighten us with this knowledge? Poles? Lures? And anything else we could stand to learn?
Layers, obviously, but how much rain gear do we really need? Like really really? Oh, and bugs? Really really bad? Or totally not a big deal? And, one last thing regarding weather … when is the absolute latest departure date from Alaska for snow?
The Alaska BIG Bucket List
Salmon and Trout Fishing
When we travel we tend not to do touristy things. We steer clear and look for the authentic local flavor of where we are. In fact, next Spring we are heading to Europe with only what we can fit in our packs on our back.
So, when I read how huge fishing is in Alaska, I knew we would be broadening our horizons and hitting the rivers. We have good feedback on the Kenai River and the Russian River on the Kenai Peninsula, along with clamming for Razor Clams from Ninilchik to Anchor Point. As well as in Homer on the Spit … I hear Halibut fishing here is incredible.
This has to be done. But, we are on a major budget, gas alone will eat up the majority of extra cash we may have had. Any ideas on the best place to hop take off would be greatly appreciated!! Or maybe you won a bush plane and always thought it would be incredible to take a large adventurous family on a tour?
Alaskan King Crab
No way are my kids going to order Alaskan King Crab from Red Lobster and not taste the real deal fresh as fresh as can be! Any amazing local restaurants that y’all would recommend? Or anything else related to Alaskan King Crab?
The entire family knows we are not leaving Alaska until we have kayaked AND climbed glaciers. I hear Valdez is a very accessible location, as well as in Kennicott. So, I’m super stoked to know there are at least two spots where we will have this opportunity! Other must see glacier spots?
Dream list of Wildlife to See & Capture in Photographs
- Grizzly Bears
- Eagles, especially the Golden Eagle
- Polar Bear
- Arctic Fox
- Snowy Owl
Our Alaska Driving Route
We are not following any precut route or popular route. We are literally going where and when we want.
Our first leg, as mentioned above we are stopping in at Kelly’s Whitewater Park in Cascade, ID and plan to make our trek to Banff/Kananaskis the fastest way through Western ID into Eastern BC and over the Rocky Montains into Alberta. About 14 hours of driving.
driving from Kelly’s to Banff/Kananaskis there are a couple of ways to get there. Fastest way on the GPS will send you up western idaho into eastern BC and then over the rockies and into Alberta. We just did this a week ago and it is about 14 hours of driving.
Our Current Gear List
- Power: (Inverter, Solar, etc)
- Spare Tire and Tools to change Tires
- Spare Wiper Blades
- Windshield Insurance Policy
- Additional Roadside Assistance Plan
- Chase Truck so we can get into the deep wilderness and explore
- Cameras/Video Cameras
- Goretex Hiking Boots
- GeigerRig Packs with Water Filters
- Merino Wool Socks
- Rain Gear
- Fishing Gear (pole, line, lures, etc)
- Bug Spray
- Bear Gear Spray
- Survival Gear (knife, emergency blanket, first aid kit, etc)
- Jet Pack for Wifi
- Wineguard Wifi Extender
- Jackson Kayaks
- Compact SLR Camera
- Waterproof point and shoot cameras
- Video Microphone
- Extra batteries for all cameras
- Plethora of SD cards
No clue. If you know of camping that is free or crazy inexpensive, please let us know. I’m sure we will figure this out along the way, but we aren’t keen on spending time in pricey campgrounds … we want the rugged Alaskan experience!! This section will undoubtedly change as we find the ultimate camping spots for an Alaska Road Trip.
Our Research Buddies:
Our friends at Chasing the Sun, spent a lot of time helping us determine a route, nail down locations that would offer up the type of wild and RAW adventure that we would love as well as helping to steer us away from destinations that are more touristy and that will not satisfy our needs. They have a plethora of blogs on their site about The Yukon and Alaska … my favorite is the one about homeschooling through the Yukon.
Several other friends have been to Alaska numerous occasions and have given us some pointers as well. And we actually did a little research all of our own. We have a few books in addition to websites.
This may sound like a pathetically minimal amount of research for a trip so enormous, but this is how we roll. If we are missing anything or are way off on our assumptions, please holler at us. And, if you have places or ideas that you think we’d love, we’d love to hear about them!
For sure you should sign up for TruLife.tv for all our premium content. In addition to more amazing content, all subscribers will get a 10% discount on our documentary to be released summer of 2019.
You can also follow us on all Social Media Channels … we are KelloggShow across the board…even on SnapChat! 🙂 But, don’t just follow let’s interact, let’s build relationships, let’s meet up if we are in your area. We are up for any adventures and making new friends is always a good thing! In fact, you can even drop us an email as well!