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Im not sure where else to put this, so im trying here. This is only the 2nd discussion I've started so bear with me.

My wife and I are planning on relocating from Oregon to Alaska soon and we are wondering if anybody has made a trip up the Alaskan highway in October or November. Originally, we were planning on going this last spring, but there were circumstances that prevented our departure. The next chance we will have is late this fall, and then again in the spring (April-May). If anyone can let us know what the drive is typically like including weather/snowfall amount that you came across.

Thank you for any insight you might have

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I've driven it a dozen times, including riding a motorcycle up it in October and driving it in December.

Given the choice of October to December, I'd choose December. Its almost a certainty to have hard packed snow on it and that is just about as good as it ever gets. The traffic is gone except for the truckers and they will always stop if you need help.

A snowstorm can happen at any time, but in October it can easily melt turning into slush and mud and that is a nightmare! November is also more likely to melt leaving you with slush. The worst part of my drive in December was in Alberta where the snow was melting leaving slush and mud. That stuff is dangerous!!Worst is the non-existent visibility with it on your windshield. Every truck that goes past you blinds you with a thick soup of brown mud. A close second is if a wheel touches the shoulder full of slush and mud, it will suck you right off the road and into it.

It's also more likely to have an Aurora--and that is a priceless event!!
(08-29-2017, 08:18 PM)akrvbob Wrote: [ -> ]I've driven it a dozen times, including riding a motorcycle up it in October and driving it in December.

Given the choice of October to December, I'd choose December. Its almost a certainty to have hard packed snow on it and that is just about as good as it ever gets. The traffic is gone except for the truckers and they will always stop if you need help.
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It's also more likely to have an Aurora--and that is a priceless event!!

Good information for future reference.
Ditto what Bob said. I've driven it 7 times myself with one time in December and another in January. Make sure you're well supplied and I'd recommend some tire cables/chains for possible slick mountain grades. Also, many of the gas stations are closed during the winter months as well so plan accordingly.
Thank you for the responses. December seems like it would be the better choice. I have chains for my tires and a gas can stowed away. I grew up in idaho and made several winter trips with snow and ice on the roads, so I'll have a good idea on how to handle that. I just wanted to make sure there won't be any real surprises. I heard the frost heaves can get pretty bad in the spring, so how about December?

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The road is paved so not sure why there is the concern about mud. The last section that was gravel was paved in 1992 so that really shoulsn't create an issue for an October or December decision. The problem with a oaved road in December is that snow pack often turns into ice with the sun and people driving over it.
North to Alaska, go north the rush is on........Where the river is windin' big nuggets they're findin'.......

sorry I couldn't resist. highdesertranger
Awesome! That's the song I was thinking when I put up the title

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(08-30-2017, 05:27 PM)highdesertranger Wrote: [ -> ]North to Alaska,  go north the rush is on........Where the river is windin' big nuggets they're findin'.......

sorry I couldn't resist.  highdesertranger

Had that song in mind when I opened the thread; ... and now I have "way up north" stuck on a continuous loop in my head ...
(08-30-2017, 10:36 AM)DuneElliot Wrote: [ -> ]The road is paved so not sure why there is the concern about mud. The last section that was gravel was paved in 1992 so that really shoulsn't create an issue for an October or December decision. The problem with a oaved road in December is that snow pack often turns into ice with the sun and people driving over it.

It isn't really paved, it's chip sealed and by the end of the summer, it's getting pretty ratty. And there is no pretense of paved shoulders. 

The last 200 miles in the Yukon, they don't even pretend to chip seal, it's just dirt like it always was. I assume it's because there are no Canadians there and they don't care about us Americans who are driving it!!

With the rain and snow of fall/winter, they can be a trap waiting for you. They also sand it over fall/winter creating its own mud. Most plows are dump trucks that sand as they plow. With freeze-thaw cycles, comes lots of rocks and mud flying whenever a truck goes by.  

Usually, by December it freezes and stays frozen up north. It was 30 below when I drove it in December and the sun has lost most of its power that far north. Sunny days mean well below zero. 

Your experience of winter in the Lower 48 doesn't apply to the Yukon.

That's why I said Alberta was the worst, because it's so far south it still thaws regurarly in December.
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