Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Downsizing for Alaska......maybe longer

7:30 am - Wednesday - March 20th - Fontana, CA - 53º F, 46% humidity, wind 2 mph out of the north by northeast.......cloudy today with a 50% chance of rain.......forecast high is 63º F.

We have been talking for months about what we will not take with us to Alaska.  I have even gone as far as making a 'Post It Note' list which hangs in the trailer so as not to forget which items are targeted for storage while we travel to Alaska and back.  You might ask "If you don't need those things in Alaska, why do you have them at all?", and that would be a good question.  "After all, you just hauled all that 'stuff' up to Maine, down to Florida and back to SoCal covering almost 10,000 miles, right?"......yes, you would be right. So, why?  Well, we had initially discussed not taking the trailer with us to Alaska, and maybe not even the car, but after discussing it for a couple of months we asked ourselves "Why not take the trailer and car with us?  We just hauled them up to Maine, down to Florida and back to Socal.  The mileage to Alaska and back will be just about the same."  So, in the end, we compromised, deciding to just lighten the load as much as possible.  

Our son, Chris, has offered to help us haul the stuff we are not taking over to his office warehouse, using his Chevy pickup, where we will store it until we return.  Here is a partial list of what we will not be taking:

1) Artificial turf......we usually do not deploy it unless we are staying somewhere for a week, or more.  We don't plan to stay anywhere that long.
2) The Weingard Carryout Satellite dish, plus 100's of feet of cable in case we need to deploy it, but we will be too far north to capture the signal from the DirecTV satellite, which at that latitude will be at, or below the horizon.
3) Our two anti gravity recliners.....we don't deploy them unless we are staying somewhere for more than a week.
4) Two camp chairs.....we have 4....we rarely deploy all four.
5) Bench grinder....I rarely use it, and haven't had a need for it in a year.
6) The Cannondale tandem bicycle.......haven't used it in a year.
7) The Ancheer Back Machine
8) Golf clubs
9) Sewing machine
10) Several Rubbermaid storage tubs from under the bed
11) Heated Hose
12) Wheel truing machine
13) Box of photographs
14) Metal dollies
15) Outdoor TV.....we only pull it out for special events like the World Cup, Tour de France, etc.
16) Sea Eagle inflatable kayak.....if we want to kayak we'll just rent them while we are up there.

Actually, the list is much more extensive than we originally thought, so I will just attach a few photos of the pile we have created in the trailer.....

 All of this stuff will be leaving the Newell, and trailer 
until we return from Alaska!

......look how empty the front the trailer right now!  We will be taking our 2 Cannondale road bikes, but I haven't decided about my Intense 5.5 mountain bike yet....

.....I spent most of the afternoon in the trailer sorting through things, and creating a pile of stuff to be hauled over to my son's warehouse for storage.  After seeing all that stuff I am now thinking we have to take some time when we return to decide whether all that stuff is really needed.  It appears to me we are hauling around a lot of stuff we don't use, and in many cases have forgotten we even had.  It appears it is time, after 7 years on the road, to 'downsize' once again.

We never had to turn on the A/C Tuesday, and the temp never got above 73º F. Wednesday promises to be even cooler, so it appears we are past the minor heatwave we were experiencing over the weekend.

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  1. As you probably already know, the last 200 or so miles in the Yukon before you reach Beaver Creek is the worst of the worst. You will probably hit 60-80 miles of construction, where they tear up the road and move on...once it is all torn up (three 20 mile sections back in 2016) they start repairing and work backwards. THAT was 12-18 MPH due to wash board conditions from tearing it up. Prior to that we had 150 miles of frost heaves. We drive a 28' and pull a HHR, and the frost heaves were not too hard to manage....take them at a slight angle, when you hit the next you angle back the other way, makes the impact much less (taught to us by some guys just we met just before Destruction Bay...they drive the highway numerous times each year...we had already gone through many miles of frost heaves before meeting them.) The amazing thing we did not can drive for many many miles without seeing anyone, so you just pace yourself accordingly. In the construction zone, autos don't seem to slow down, and some RVs went fast than us...but the highway is plenty for flying rocks off oncoming and passing vehicle tires.

    1. Dave, thank you so much for this wealth of information! Love the frost heave strategy.