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Congratulations Giles

You made the cover of Lotus reMarque for the May-June issue!

Stay safe.
 

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Discussion Starter #143
Currently in Beaver Creek just about to cross into (the big bit of) Alaska. Car sitting outside motel with an inch of snow on !!!!
Been down in Skagway and Haines where it rained and the wind blew non stop. Also no reliable internet in either place !!
I think sun is due to come out in Anchorage today ????

I guess I will have to wait till I get home to see my copy Doug !!! Also got on some Yukon Tourism Facebook page when I was in Whitehorse last week !

The one that makes me laugh is that in 2 months on the road, being on the road every day, I have only been "spotted" once, and that was crossing the GG Bridge right at the beginning.
As you will see in my blog, I was setting up my tent in Haines Junction 2 nights ago and a Caterham 7 pulls up !! Blew me away ! Guy names Jude from Juneau !!
Life is full of surprises !
 

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The wonders of modern technology

Hi Waelsie,

Remember me? We met on the ferry between Skagway and Haines. We never got to exchange contact details in that miserable weather. And I never knew which campground you said you were heading for. I stayed at the Oceanside RV Park... a lovely park with a lovely owner. Had a great time.

On Sunday I learned just by chance, at the Visitor centre, that you had left town. Pity you did not stay around, as it was a beautiful day, all day, in Haines.

I figured you would just go up north and drive the Haul Road... and then tonight I was sorting photos, and I see I took one of your car when you pulled alongside, after we got off the ferry. Others confirmerd that it is a Lotus, and so, Mr Google has brought me here. The wonders of modern technology.

[I had very reliable internet in Haines... and it was free!]

Would love to catch up. You can send me an email via this forum.

Right now I am in Anchorage and plan to stay in the area for at least a week, before heading further north... or west, or south! lol

Was corresponding with a young man who is an engineer on the North Slope, and he said that right now, besides the potholes, etc., there is still some ice on the Haul Road. And I do not fancy driving on ice. So will be waiting a few weeks. Last time I travelled it, it was 20th - 22nd June.

Lifey - Roadtrip Enthusiast
Heading for the Horizon
 

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Discussion Starter #145
I made the right decision to leave Haines - Had a wonderful drive north ! Just had 3 days in Denali - Got to see McKinley withut a cloud in the sky - Pilot said it was one of the best days he has ever had up there because there was no wind at all so we coud fly through the valleys and almost touch the mountains !! Also got to drive the Park Road up to mile 29 - As of today it is now closed except to shuttle buses and lottery winners ! So for those 2 reasons I ran down to Denali. Now back in Fairbanks and will be here 3 days or so, then heading down towords Anchorage and Kenai. I love it up here !
 

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Discussion Starter #146
Couple of pics of the last few days - Rest are on the blog
Giles
 

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Gotta say, I am impressed, wait no, amazed, wait no, ASTOUNDED by your journey. Esp the fact that you mentioned it in 2010 and actually followed through in 2012!!! Quite awe-inspiring!!!!
How many miles have you put on your car in the US, and how many miles total have you put on the car?
Plans to come down to the midwest or northeast?
Maybe in 2014/2015 I might do the same in Australia!
 

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Discussion Starter #148
According to my fuel stats in my phone, have so far done 9014 miles since I landed in the US on 5th March, used 288.85 galls of fuel, avge mpg is 31.93 !!! 64000 miles on car altogether now.

No plans except to try to come south in a month or so to Seattle, from where I will ship the car home. If all is good (car, me, and weather) I will come south via Klondike Hwy and Banff / Jasper to Seattle, if not all good, with just catch Alaska Marne ferry from wherever I am to Bellingham.

I will need a rest by then, especially if I am to drive through S America down to Tierra Del Fuego in the next couple of years.
Re the time delay,there are two issues. 1) It takes that long to plan a trip properly. I also rebuilt my car prior to the trip - that took a year ! 2) By telling people you are going to do something in advance, it prevents you from backing out too easily when things get tough. I would have backed out several times during the planning stages if I had not told everyone what I was going to do !!!
Article in the Fairbanks press here last Saurday Fairbanks Daily News-Miner - Australian stops in Fairbanks during ?Elsie from bottom to top? dream tour And I believe I am on the front cover of ReMarque this month, the Lotus Limited club magazine ? My copy is in Aus !!!
 

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Discussion Starter #149
Made it to the target - But without Elsie !! Went on a commercial recce tour yesterday because so many people had told me about 6" rocks being used as gravel, and pot holes that would swallow my car, and a million and one other horror stories, and now I have seen it, I don't know where these stories originate, but I am certain the people who tell them have never driven the Dalton !!! Sure, there is some rough stuff, particularly one 10 mile section where they are doing road works at the moment. There is some frost heave on the sealed section, and on the dirt (which is generally better than the sealed bits !!) there are a few areas of corrugations, which are a pain (literally and figuratively), but other than that, no major problem I don't think. Its just like a good Aussie outback road but in better condition, with lots of trucks on as usual ! One truck driver who passed our bus yesterday was an Aussie and asked our driver on channel 19 if he had any Aussies on board !! They are a friendly bunch out there - As long as you remember they are boss !!!
So going up in Elsie tomorrow !! Fingers crossed !!
 

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Congratulations. Take the picture with elsie, fill the tank with petrol, next stop Tierra del Fuego (its only 9700 or so miles)


Top of the the world, +/- a little, to you!
 

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So the trip wraps up soon? And on the West coast?

I thought the trip as originally planned was going to bring you through Eastern Canada?

I was looking forward to meeting you in Toronto.

Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #152
Rofl !! The trip will never "wrap up" !! But after 90 days on the road already, and still another 30 or more to go down in Kenai and across th Top of the World and down to Calgary, other things (like family) are starting to wonder where I am !! And to be honest, I always said that when I got to Calgary, I would at that point decide what I would do next ! One thing I have learned is that camping in an Elise is difficult because the equipment takes up space that you would use for a second person. I travelled all over Europe satying in B&B's in the Elise with my wife, and we had enough space, but with tent, sleep bag, sleeping mat, little stove, some food, and a few tools/spare parts, I am literally driving along with the passenger seat full most of the time. A second sleeping bag would be impossible. And that means I am getting very lonely. I do not mean that in a stupid sense, but in a very real one. It is something I never considered, but it is a very lonely life out here on the road - Alone all day in the car, in the campsite, and although you meet people and chat to them all the time, that is not the same. Doesn;t mean I am not enjoying the trip, but I can assure you a 4 month trip on your own is very different from 2-3 weeks on your own !! If there was room in the car for someone to join me, I would keep going. Sorry David, but unless something major changes, (or I get a trailer) not this trip !! If you knew what was going on in my life at the moment you would understand !

PS - Why don't you pop over to the Kenai for a couple of weeks, and we could have a beer !!!! Rofl.
Giles
 

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Giles, I think I follow the loneliness part.

A few years back my brother-in-law went to Alaska on his motorcycle. Although he had fun, he said later that he missed having a passenger. There was no one to share the memories with.

I have been following your blog and photos and quite enjoy it. Hopefully someday we will meet.

Dave
 

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Back in my college days I would drive back and forth from Ft Collins, Colorado to Anchorage in 4 days, driving 1,000 miles each day for the first three days. Oftentimes, I'd refuel at unattended gas stations, camp by the side of the road, and never have the chance to speak to someone those first three days. I always noticed the (positive) difference when I came into contact with people again at the end of my trip.

Glen
 

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Check out Giles' blog - he made it! Congratulations Giles!

Giles - the daytime Northern Lights you described was probably what we call a sun dog. It's caused by ice crystals in the air refracting the sun's light. It often appears as a complete circle around the sun, but can also be partial circles or the shape of wispy clouds.

Congratulations again!

Glen
 

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Just finished reading your first installment in Remarque. Congrats on completing your quest. F'n brill!


Sent from my Autoguide iPhone app
 

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Discussion Starter #157
Way back before I started my trip, I mentioned that I would be putting the Pro Shield tearoffs on my windscreen as added protection against flying stones during my trip, and someone asked me to report back on what I thought of the product after I had used it. Trouble is I can;t remember who it was !!
But just for everyone's interest, I put a 4 tearoff layer on my car in Seattle, and am VERY impressed with it. Trucks going the other way do not faze me, even on the Dalton. I had some stone hits, and even have slight cuts in the shield in a couple of places, but windscreen is perfect. I would do it again any time. It scratches more easily than glass, but not too easily, and once you have it on, you can use wipers / rain off etc without any scratching or damage. The key is in getting it on properly in the first place. I had a bit of a problem as no one in the area where I was had even seen it before, but most cities have an "approved dealer" who will put it on for you. Not sure about the legal aspect on the roads in the US, but I can tell you that no one knows I have even got it on there until I tell them, so who the hell is going to know ? If you are doing a long drive, or racing, or just want to protect your windscreen, I recommend you look at this product. The fact that they make them for Elises is a bonus !!!! BTW, I do NOT work for this company, nor get anything from them. Just a good product I am happy to endorse. Windshield Tear-Offs
Giles
 

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Discussion Starter #160
Well, I have finished. Or perhaps I should say "I am finished" !!

Pulled into Anacortes on Tuesday evening 15,240 miles and exactly 4 months after I started. Along the way I have driven Laguna Seca, climbed Pikes Peak, driven the Dalton to the Arctic Circle, and come across the Top of the World Hiway in the Yukon. I have had bears and bison next to my car, and had a moose chase me up the road ! I have caught halibut till my arms ached. And the only damage incurred to the car (other than wear or tear) was one of my $4.99 'Roo Shoos (Deer scarers to you) got broken clean off a few days ago by a stone thrown up !! The car has run faultlessly throughout, although it got a bit breathless at 14,100 feet !! It gets shipped home from Seattle in 2 weeks time.

But you know what - From the first run with the Elises in the LA hills back in early March before my car arrived, right until the guy I met in a car park in the North Cascades National Park on Tuesday, by far the best thing has been the people I have met and the firm friends I have made along the way. What started out as just a drive has turned into a life changing experience in a way I never expected. I would like to thank all of you on here for your support and friendship. It made the trip so special.

I am going to do a final blog in the next week or so which will just pick the best few moments and photos of the trip, and when linked to the map will hopefully show the whole trip.

I am coming back - I have fallen in love with Alaska. But next time I will do it in a vehicle more suitable to the conditions !!

Thanks agan everyone. :bow:

And I can't believe I was only "spotted" once !!!!!!!
 
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