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Forums —» General Caching —» General —» Driving through BC to Alaska
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Driving through BC to Alaska
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Sky Rookie



Joined: Feb 22, 2010
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 7:14 pm    Post subject: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

I will be attending GeoWoodstock this year in the Seattle area. I am strongly considering making a very long road trip through BC to get up to Alaska.

I'm looking for any information to make my trip more enjoyable. What's the best route? What are some of the best caches along the way? Best places to spend the night along the way? I see some earth caches along the way, these are my favorite. I'm budgeting 4-5 days for the trip, but I can afford 1-2 days more.

I'll be returning the US via central Canada, I need to be in Iowa by 7/24.

Thanks for any information that anyone can provide.
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doingitoldschool



Joined: Jan 07, 2008
Posts: 176

PostPosted: Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:57 pm    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

If you just want a quicker trip to a small part of the panhandle, you can get to Hyder, Alaska via Prince George, Kitwanga and Mezziadan Junction, to Stewart BC. That`s two very long days of driving from Vancouver.
Otherwise, you have to drive north to Dawson creek, and then follow the Alaska Highway in. I haven't done it myself.
Or, you can drive to Prince Rupert via Prince George, and then get on the Alaska Ferry - but very expensive in the summer.
I wonder if the Alaska ferry comes down to Seattle? Hmmm...
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Aerodoq



Joined: Apr 01, 2007
Posts: 66
Location: Vancouver

PostPosted: Tue Feb 23, 2010 2:53 pm    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

Depends on what you consider "best" Smile

We've driven from Vancouver to Inuvik (near the Arctic Ocean). On the way up we drove to Dawson Creek and then took the Alaskan Highway up.

Coming back down we drove through the Cassiar (Hwy 37) to Prince Ruoert and took the ferry to Vancouver Island.

They ferry was great, nice scenery, quick, stress-free but expensive. The drive along the Alaskan highway was a much nicer drive (with some cool/interesting stops along the way) but took longer.

You say you're budgeting 4-5 days for the trip ... if that includes up and back, then it's not enough. It's at least 3 days from Vancouver to Alaska -- if you don't stop for anything other than sleep.

A>

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Sky Rookie



Joined: Feb 22, 2010
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2010 3:21 pm    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

Aerodoq wrote:
Depends on what you consider "best" Smile
You say you're budgeting 4-5 days for the trip ... if that includes up and back, then it's not enough. It's at least 3 days from Vancouver to Alaska -- if you don't stop for anything other than sleep.

A>
No, that 4-5 days is one way. I'll be stopping for caches and site seeing along the way. There is a chance I may just make it all of July for my Alaskan experience.
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doingitoldschool



Joined: Jan 07, 2008
Posts: 176

PostPosted: Thu Feb 25, 2010 9:30 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

Of course, both the Alaska Hwy and the Cassiar Hwy can get you to Whitehorse - I thought part of the Cassiar (by Dease Lake) was still gravel, but maybe that's changed.

For an adventure from Seattle, do the Whistler-Pemberton Hwy (instead of Hwy 1) to Cache Creek on you way up - some spectacular views. The road is all paved, but not for the faint of heart.
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phatbennyb



Joined: Apr 21, 2008
Posts: 42

PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2010 1:23 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

doingitoldschool: When did they finish paving the pemberton highway? last time I was on it it was gravel for a long stretch...
(mind you that was 4 years ago, lol)
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tjguy98



Joined: Aug 06, 2005
Posts: 206
Location: Maple Ridge

PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 12:22 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

Must be longer than 4 years ago, unless they were repaving. I was through there as far back as May 2001 and it was paved from Pemberton to Lillooet.

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phatbennyb



Joined: Apr 21, 2008
Posts: 42

PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 2:17 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

Weird, because when I hitch hiked through in summer 2005 to move to the island, there was a big stretch that was dirt still. Hmmm..... must have been repaving....

Either way I agree with doingitoldschool Whislter-Pemberton is the nicer more senic route.
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doingitoldschool



Joined: Jan 07, 2008
Posts: 176

PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2010 10:18 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

My dad and I drove it north to south in 1998, and I remember it being paved. It was both a bit nerve-wracking and stunning. I haven't looked to see if there are any caches on it.
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Aerodoq



Joined: Apr 01, 2007
Posts: 66
Location: Vancouver

PostPosted: Sun Feb 28, 2010 8:47 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

The Whistler-Pemberton highway's been paved since at least 1997 -- you probably just ran into resurfacing.

And from what I can recall from 2004, the Cassiar is fully paved too. Although I'd become a bit desensitized to gravel roads by that point since almost the entirety of the Dempster Highway is gravel.

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cookiemakers



Joined: Jul 30, 2007
Posts: 12
Location: Duncan, BC

PostPosted: Fri Mar 05, 2010 11:31 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

We did Terrace to Whitehorse last summer, beautiful, you'll enjoy the trip. We went up and back the cassiar, short side trip from Meziadin into Stewart will probably be the highlight of the trip up that way, the glaciers and waterfalls are amazing, another couple hours past Stewart will get you through Hyder and the Grizzley bear viewing platforms and up to Salmon Glacier, the 5th largest glacier in Canada, stunning...plenty of caches to make the side trip worth while, if you're looking for interesting, check out driving north of Terrace into the Lava Beds (a few caches up there too) then over onto the Cassiar Highway, following the Cranberry logging road which is usually in decent condition. Check out the cache descriptions for an idea of the area. Um...north of Dease Lake the highway gets pretty rough for a good portion we were doing 60km/h watching for pot holes, parts are sealed (rough pavement like) Boya Lake is definately another stop, crystal clear water, an amazing blue, you can rent canoes from the campground there pretty cheaply, last year there was a moose and her baby hanging around, and lots of beavers.

If you go the other way, make sure you stop in at Liard Hotsprings and check out Muncho Lake, another amazingly beautiful lake. Better yet, take one way up and the other way down.

So if I was planning the trip for us, I'd go Vancouver, through the farmland up through Hope, up the Fraser highway some amazing scenery through the Cariboo desert like in places, to Prince Geroge, west to Terrace, up teh Nisga'a Highway to the Lava Beds across the Cranberry Junction and then up the Cassiar Highway, into Stewart for the day or overnight, continue up teh Cassiar because to get back down, you can head past the Cassiar Highway and come back down the other highway to either head east from Fort St. John or Prince Geroge. Either way, it'll be an amazing trip. We absolutely loved it last year, Whitehorse is a place we'lldefinately go back to, same with hiking in Kluane National Park. You'll need a good 5 days to get up there to Alaska though.

Lisa

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Sky Rookie



Joined: Feb 22, 2010
Posts: 3

PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2010 6:24 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

Lisa,

Thanks for all the info! I'm actually starting to map my route now as my trip is approaching quickly. Keep in mind I'm coming from Houston! I need to find a Canadian atlas, my "North American" atlas only has the south part of BC. So I was following your directions and ran out of map. Smile

Anyway, if you can think of any must-do caches please post them or email me. I love almost all outdoor activities. I love earth caches. I'm also on the look out for cheap as possible lodging, hostels and/or camping is ok with me.

I have decided to take all the time it takes for this trip. School starts again in late August, that's about my only time limit. So I have at least 6 weeks. Of course cost is a problem, but if i can stop along the way and throw up my tent that would be great.

I'll be looking for a Canadian atlas this weekend, which may be hard to find here in Texas. Smile

Thanks for any other info you all can provide.

John
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vanislelady



Joined: Jan 20, 2007
Posts: 224
Location: Campbell River

PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2010 11:47 am    Post subject: Re: Driving through BC to Alaska Reply with quote

You should be able to get maps through your AAA . I belong to BCAA and can use the online trip planner which has an online atlas etc. Lots of online maps including Google should help
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