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BUMPS AND GUNK
The two RV Gypsies say "DON'T DO IT - DON'T DRIVE THE ALASKA HIGHWAY UNTIL ROADS ARE FIXED." Their car windshield got cracked and pitted in several places and the front of the car looked like it was sand blasted. The car got totally pitted and in need of a whole new paint job. The decals were completely ruined. It is probably un-sellable now. The motorhome has also taken a beating, not to mention the stress on both vehicles and the two RV Gypsies. Another RVer asked the two RV Gypsies "Why are we all doing this?" Good Question!
 

For about the last 350 miles on the Alaska Highway in the Yukon Territory, much of the roads were dirt/gravel, mud or just full of bumps and dips called frost heaves. The two RV Gypsies found this to be extremely stressful. The worst frost heaves were marked with red flags, but many frost heaves were not marked. The motorhome shook, bounced and rattled like you would not believe. Clothes fell off the closet rack and sweaters fell from their shelves making it almost impossible to open the closet doors. Covers to ceiling lights fell off. And when a car was in front of the two RV Gypsies; or passing them on the dirt/gravel roads, the dust was so heavy they could barely see the road. These roads were watered at times and that kept the dust down somewhat, but then the road became muddy.

Have you ever written "wash me" on a dirty car? Of course you have! But guess what? When the mud dries on the cars and RVs after driving the kind of roads described above, one cannot write on the vehicle because it cakes and becomes thick like clay. Scroll down below for photos of this event.

mud caked on the car
mud caked on the car

The car's headlights do not have a cover - that is caked-on dirt.

A regular car wash does not help.

It had to be pressured cleaned off with a very powerful pressure cleaner.

mud caked on the car and RV

In The Milepost book (which is a must for anyone driving in Alaska) - it says "Tok is known as the Sled Dog Capital of Alaska" and "Judging by the number of Alaska Highway travelers cleaning their cars and RVs in Tok each summer, it may also qualify as the Vehicle Washing Capital of Alaska as well." - an Understatement!!!!!

- DRIVING THE ALASK HIGHWAY 2009 -
WE ARE DOING THIS BECAUSE......................??????
gravel road
gravel road
The tiny pieces of gravel got thrown onto vehicles - this is how the windshield got cracked in several places and the paint job got pitted.
gravel road
gravel road
gravel road
gravel road and dust
An RV passing the water truck on a hill - not smart!-
having to pass the water turcks on a hill
dust on the gravel road
dust on the gravel road
dust on the gravel road
mud on the gravel road
The frost heaves were hard to photograph because they just don't really show up in photographs. Actually some of them are hard to see until just before you hit them, and some you don't even see in time. The dirty muddy roads above caused the filthy cars and cracked windshields, but the frost heaves are really stressful on the vehicles.
Permafrost 101: Permafrost is ground that is frozen year-round. The roads ripple like waves on an ocean. Permafrost causes the most trouble when it melts under the road and the road sags - thus called frost heaves.
 
The ferry back (which was booked on the way here) costs about $8,000. So the two RV Gypsies will drive through this area on the way back to the lower 48. Hopefully, some of these roads will be fixed by then, but since the work on these roads started in 2008, it's almost certain to be another stressful trip back.

go to the next adventure of the two RV GypsiesThe two RV Gypsies finally entered ALASKA