Thursday, 23 June 2022
Immediately we headed off on our nice Alaska journey! We spent the morning packing up and getting the ultimate issues prepared, then stopped by my chiropractor appointment in SF within the late afternoon. We picked up dinner within the metropolis (Molinari’s) earlier than driving only a couple hours north. Boondocked in a on line casino parking zone tonight. 🙂
Friday, 24 June 2022
Lengthy drive day as we speak. Bought near Seattle however ended up pulling right into a relaxation space in Washington when it was getting late and we had been about 2 hours away.
Saturday, 25 June 2022
Began the morning by getting an oil change, which we hadn’t had an opportunity to do earlier than leaving. Then stopped into REI to choose up a rain jacket for A, which hadn’t been in inventory earlier than. Fortunately discovered precisely one in his dimension! And it was even yellow. 🙂 Bought to our associates’ home and performed the remainder of the day there within the lake and had a pleasant time.
Sunday, 26 June 2022
Church with associates and extra hangs and enjoyable. Met some associates of our associates who’re additionally driving to Alaska this summer time with their camper so we had tons to debate.
Monday, 27 June 2022
Headed off! Stopped briefly to see another associates. Lengthy driving day. Crossed the border! Stayed in a parking zone in a little bit museum & customer heart. I used to be nervous about bears and made Dan shut all the highest air vents simply in case. The little city had a dump so we took care of that earlier than pulling in for the night time.
Tuesday, 28 June 2022
One other lengthy driving day. Stopped for the night time at a little bit pullout to boondock at Bonus Lake Recreation Heart. It was fairly however a bit muddy/steep getting in with only one space the place we might match to tug in. And by some means eight MILLION MOSQUITOES bought into the RV at night time!!! It was depressing. Dan and I had been up for a number of hours killing them.
Wednesday, 29 June 2022
Effectively, as we speak was fairly the journey. We had an extended driving day crammed with beautiful views. Stopped at a fuel station and a fruit truck man handed us some recent strawberries as a result of the individuals who had ordered them didn’t decide them up. So good!
Stopped at a gast station and picked up mosquito zappers (appear to be tennis racquets and principally electrocute them). They appeared to dissipate by morning from final night time. We’ve by no means had them come into the RV earlier than, even in buggy areas however there have been tons of final night time!
Then we drove up Freeway 37, the place we noticed the primary of some wildlife!! Noticed a bear crossing the street, then one other one some time later. We additionally noticed a moose and a lovely hovering bald eagle. So thrilling.
We intersected wtih the Alcan simply west of Watson Lake. We drove about 15-20 minutes earlier than we had been headed uphill and unexpectedly the RV began whining, after which simply wouldn’t go, so we instantly pulled to the aspect of the street. Tried to show it on and it wouldn’t activate in any respect. The engine simply wouldn’t flip over. Ugh!!!
Miraculously, simply two nights earlier than, Dan had JUST arrange the little Garmin satellite messaging device I gave him again at Christmas. So grateful as a result of there was zero cell service. So he was capable of instantly message our Good Sam Roadside Assistance. They couldn’t get a tow to us that night time because it was already about 5:30pm however stated they may get one for us at 9am the next morning. We had been additionally capable of message Dan’s dad, who instantly began engaged on attempting to determine different towing choices, a mechanic, and all kinds of issues.
A number of type Canadians stopped to ask if they may assist however we had been fairly positive it was the transmission so there wasn’t actually something they may do. One good couple stated they’d name the police to return out for us, and in addition insisted on giving us their Tim Horton’s doughnuts. So type of them. The RCMP ended up popping out to verify on us and had been so good, and advised us we had been fantastic to remain the night time there if we had been snug, or provided to name us a taxi if we needed to move right into a lodge on the town.
So we figured we’d simply sleep on the aspect of the freeway within the RV as a substitute of going to a lodge. The children had good attitudes and we had been grateful we at the least nonetheless had a spot to sleep. Sadly, the night time was absolute distress.
Actually 1000’s of mosquitoes got here into the RV at varied factors by the night time. Dan and I had been up killing them from 1am-2:30am, then we awoke once more and killed them from 4am till virtually 6am – all the youngsters had been awake at that piont, too, as a result of there have been JUST SO MANY of them. Everybody had zappers and had been attempting to kill them. M was the one one who was secure as a result of she was in her zip up tent. I used to be additionally soooo uncomfortable as a result of I used to be on my knees on our mattress killing them for that complete time and it made my pelvic ache a lot worse. All of us tried hiding beneath the covers to sleep a bit extra however they woke us up once more round 8am. It was simply completely terrible. There have been additionally far more within the again by Dan and me in our bed room space. We had no concept the place they had been coming in as a result of Dan even taped off all of the ceiling vents after the night time earlier than, and spent a very good little bit of this time taping all alongside the sides of the home windows and alongside the sides of the ground, however nothing appeared to assist. Simply absolutely the freaking worst.
Thursday, 30 June 2022
This morning, we bought a tow again to Watson Lake, about 20-30 minutes. We couldn’t all journey with the tow truck and so they wouldn’t allow us to be within the RV, so 2 taxis got here to choose up me and the youngsters whereas Dan rode with the tow truck driver. The taxis took us to Andrea’s Lodge (the nicer of the 2 resorts on the town, we had been advised). There was a restaurant there so the youngsters and I sat and ate breakfast there whereas our room was getting cleaned. At this level, we didn’t know if we’d really sleep there however we figured at the least it was a spot to remain in the course of the day since we didn’t actually understand how issues would progress and there wasn’t actually anyplace else to hang around (and we had been all utterly exhausted from being up half the night time killing mosquitoes).
We frolicked in a room whereas Dan and his dad tried to determine what was happening with the mechanic. They discovered that it was, certainly, the transmission, and couldn’t be mounted in that tiny city, so wanted to get towed to Whitehorse, about 5 hours west. I referred to as our Good Sam Roadside Assistance to substantiate they’d cowl the towing (they’re the one ones we all know of which have limitless towing mileage and we’re SOOOO grateful we had that protection – by no means anticipated to want it however very grateful to not need to cowl the $5,000 CAD tow ourselves). I additionally appeared into the shuttle from Watson Lake to Whitehorse, Yukon, which might’ve been simply over $1,000 CAD ($800 USD) for our complete household. Ugh.
In the meantime, Dan’s dad was wonderful and calling locations throughout Canada to attempt to find a transmission. The store in Whitehorse stated they wouldn’t be capable to have a look at it till Monday since tomorrow (July 1) is Canada Day. It simply felt like every little thing was falling aside. After a lot cash and energy, it simply felt so disheartening.
Dan did discover out that the tow truck driver was promoting his previous 12 months 2000 Ford Expedition. He simply so occurred to need to buy a automobile in Whitehorse himself, so needed to promote this automobile and in addition was prepared to tow the RV to Whitehorse tonight itself as a result of he needed to choose up the opposite automobile. Although the Expedition is previous, it solely has about 107ok miles on it, so not too excessive. He solely needed $3,000 Canadian for it (about $2300 USD), so we determined that it was the best choice we had. We discovered that the RV might take between 3-6 weeks as a result of they wanted to order a transmission and it wanted to be constructed, so we realized we’d virtually definitely must one thing else to drive into Alaska at the least for a part of our journey.
As irritating because it was, we checked out the automobile and it appeared respectable. After which a man who overheard Dan’s dialog with the tow truck driver simply so occurred to have a spare third row bench seat sitting in his storage that would slot in the expedition. No concept why he occurred to have it however he provided to simply give it to us so the automobile would even have 7 seats/seat belts and would match our household. There have been zero rental vehicles out there anyplace in Watson Lake OR Whitehorse or anyplace inside a number of hundred miles (and would most likely price that a lot regardless), so we figured that was a reasonably respectable choice and an precise miracle.
By the day, we additionally appeared into a pair different choices, together with shopping for a trailer for $11ok. However we didn’t really feel assured that the Expedition might tow it and that was fairly dear, so we thought it made extra sense to remain in resorts/Airbnbs as a substitute.
I additionally texted with some previous associates of Dan’s who stay in Anchorage to ask if they’d any strategies for resorts/Airbnbs since fairly a bit was booked already. She extraordinarily kindly provided to allow us to stick with them after we had been within the Anchorage space, and was so beneficiant about it. So grateful to them.
So we ended up shopping for an previous inexperienced Ford Expedition! So random however we’re grateful it labored out. We ended up staying at Andrea’s lodge that night time (we had been capable of take their final two rooms) and bought only a few issues like toiletries and packing cubes out of the RV earlier than it bought towed for the reason that tow truck driver (Steve) stated we’d nonetheless be capable to get stuff out of it after we bought to Whitehorse ourselves the subsequent day (because it was on the way in which to proceed to Alaska).
What a day.
Friday, 1 July 2022
This morning, we repacked the packing cubes to pare them right down to take with us within the Expedition. I bought every child down to 1 giant packing dice and Dan and I every had a big and a medium. We had much less selection however I believe it would work fantastic.
Then we hopped within the Expedition to drive to Whitehorse. We initially thought we’d must buy a automobile high provider there however we determined to attend and see. After we bought there, we discovered the RV parked on the road by the Ford dealership. We thought-about whether or not we might simply sleep within the RV that night time if we might get it cleaned out from the mass mosquito carnage and sealed off. When Dan opened the trunk yesterday, he noticed tons of of mosquitoes and a gap main into the RV beneath our mattress, so he thought they could be getting in that manner. There was additionally a gap beneath the kitchen sink (it at all times bought dusty in that cupboard beneath the sink) so we figured we should always seal every little thing off so tons extra wouldn’t get in whereas it was sitting there for doubtlessly a pair weeks.
So we had everybody pitch in and we cleaned out the useless mosquitoes that had been on actually each floor – ground, cabinets, counters, every little thing. They had been additionally alllll over all of the bedding so we eliminated all of it and took it over to a close-by laundromat to clean every little thing so it could at the least be recent and clear for after we bought the RV again. Dan spent hours sealing off the holes with sealing tape and we additionally purchased Raid spray to spray the skin of the RV.
We additionally discovered what different stuff we’d must take with us, from sneakers to climbing gear to bear spray and bug repellent. Hopefully we bought every little thing we want. It felt exhausting as a result of packing as much as depart on a visit is at all times so tiring and takes a lot psychological power, and now we bought to do it for a second time on this journey! Ha. We positively pared manner down however hopefully bought the necessities for what we’ll want for Alaska. Happily, it stayed vibrant actually late as a result of we had been doing all this till near midnight. We additionally bought every little thing into the Expedition and arranged the trunk and contained in the automobile and realized we’d be fantastic with out a cartop provider, which was good!
We made the beds again up with clear linens and determined to check out sleeping within the RV that night time. Hallelujah – NO MOSQUITOES!!
What do you think?