8 weeks and 8,662 miles


We said good bye to Fairbanks 10 days ago….and started the long journey back through Canada.  After two days of resting in Tok, Alaska, we thought we were ready for the rough roads and internet deprivation.  Did not realize what was in store for us!

Our first night back in the Yukon was spent on the lovely Kluane Lake…..we learned later that it was illegal to camp there.



All the rest areas had “no overnight stay allowed” signs but this one area was not marked.  And it was getting late!  Fortunately we did not experience any problems……this was our first night to sleep without other RVs close and I was a bit anxious.

Our next night was at the Wal-Mart in Whitehorse, Yukon.  A very short travel day due to spousal misunderstandings.  Will not elaborate!

We are back in the boonies of the Cassiar Hwy, for night 3. Unfortunately we chose a primitive spot on a mosquito infested lake.  Several persistent bugs would not be caught resulting in a very poor night of sleep.

Already feeling tired, now sleep deprived, and the topo map showed one lake after another on the Cassiar Hwy…..which meant lots of mosquitos.   We decided to abandon the route and go back the Alcan…….This was not an easy decision 

We had already voted to not take the ferry trip between Haines and Skagway.  It would have been a short ferry ride connecting the two towns and costing us around $172.  We were already experiencing difficulties with the engine light and losing running light covers on the trailer. 

It was the right decision.  I could feel relief knowing that we would be returning through a somewhat familiar road.  Wondered if there would be regrets later for not seeing Steward and Hyder, towns accessible on the Cassiar? 

It’s now day 6 of the return through Canada and we are at the Quesnel Wally World.  Last night was in Fort St John’s W.M. and the night before was on a frontage road in the middle of Fort Nelson. 

We are not playing tourist!  We are just wanting to get back to the States before the stress levels zoom any higher.

Rereading my words, I realize that I have not given an accurate description of our challenges.  Imagine driving all day over roads that disappear into gravel or dirt, traveling 15 to 25 miles per hour often in the pouring rain.  During the Yukon section of the northern rockies, we were the last car in a caravan following a lead truck through miles of construction.  Not sure of the altitude but we were socked in with fog and could not see anything in front of us.  Drove for miles and finally came out in the middle of more road work!

As we have worked our way down toward the border, the roads are much better and the sun has returned today bringing big puffy clouds to dot the sky.  The two long days of constant rain are a distant memory.  Now it’s hot for the first time in weeks!



Momma mallard and her babies….seen at a rest stop.


Teslin River bridge

The above was the original post…..slightly revised.

The heading milage reflects what is on the trip odometer today, 7/26/13, almost to the US border.

Compiling 27 fill-ups…not using any of the Canadian litres fill ups…. we are averaging 15.9 miles to the gallon.  Remember that we are in a 16’ trailer that weighs less than the usual 17 ft., pulling with a 6 cyl  Tacoma.

June 1-9

Miles through the USA to Canada…….2505 miles.

Expense:  $592 for gas……..$20 for camp fees.

June 9-16

Miles through Canada …..1847 miles

Expense: $718.75 for gas……..$72 camp fees.

June 16 – July 19.

Miles in Alaska…2452 miles

Expense: $632.24 for gas…….$431 for camp fees.

Some of the figures may be slightly off….the Canada mileage looks low….will compare with the return trip when finished.

We camp for free when we can.  Our Alaska camping fees were for over a month…$111 of the $431 was for the time we spent in Anchorage while David was sick.

This morning we are in Hope, BC on the mighty Frasier River.  We are very close to Chilliwack, home of the Escape trailers, and the US border.

Thanks to everyone for their support during this challenging, but wonderful trip!


  1. Lynne, thank you so much for posting the realities of your trip.

    While I would feel higher than a kite viewing Mt. McKinley and seeing that gorgeous scenery, I simply don't have the stamina or the temperament for such a grueling trip.

    I don't handle travel well. I like to drive 3 or 4 hours, then stop someplace beautiful for several days. Then drive another 3 or 4 hours and stay someplace else for a while.

    Even with that gentle schedule I start getting out of sorts after a month or 6 weeks.

    I applaud your heroic endeavor, though. And I bet once you get rested up and have a little more of your own private space, you will only remember the good times (mostly) and be so glad you did it.

    You're my heroine! Can't wait till you can tell me about it in person someday! :)

    1. Would love to share with you in person.....we need to make that a reality sometime over the next year!

      The stress level is zero this AM! And we are looking forward to the next part of the trip....Columbia River Gorge, Oregon Coast and a visit with David's son.

      Thank you for your support....hope I can start getting caught back up with my blogging world....it felt great to get back into the US and turn on my phone (and hot spot) again.

  2. Wow, how great & bad all at the same time. Think I'd rather just look at your photos rather making the trip.

    Any chance of you coming thru NE Colorado near us on your way home? Would love to see you two again.

    1. Colorado is definitely in the plan! I have not spent more than one night in the state, way overdue to experience the mountains.

      Not starting east for several weeks.....will let you know if there is a change of plans.

  3. And I was growling at a few gnats...by time you get into the states on smooth roads bet the good times will shine. I dont think I'm up for that trip as beautiful as it must be. Bless you for being so strong...

    1. Oh dear! The plan was to inspire others to make the trip....not scare them off!

      I'll need to do another post to explain it better.

      Imagine that you have enough on your plate at the moment...learning how to do retirement is an adjustment in itself....but also figuring out nomadic life? Blessings back to you both as you begin this adventure!

  4. You've covered a lot of ground in a fairly short period of time. Hope you get a chance to put your feet up and take a deep breath for a few days soon. I'm looking forward to crossing trails with you again someday.

  5. Didn't realize how exhausted we were until yesterday! Taking that deep breath now in a campground just below Olympia.

    Due to our Arizona family connections, it's likely we will cross paths again. Hope so!

  6. Somehow I missed this post...thanks for giving us "Ground truth"...the good, bad, and ugly and the expense recap....as John said you sure covered a lot of territory in a short span of time....really liked the "Duck photos"....glad you are taking that"deep breath" and relaxing and reflecting......Safe Travels Home....Horst

  7. Thanks, Horst, for all of your support! As I mentioned on your blog's comments, the Auto Zone visit was a great relief.

    Take care and enjoy!