We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

RVing for first time

San Rafael...
Level Contributor
14 posts
22 reviews
Save Topic
RVing for first time

I am renting an RV for the first time in my life. I have it for two weeks and hope to see Alaska the best way. I'm interested mainly in National Parks and Wildlife viewing and hiking short hikes. I'm also interested in recommendations for places to park my 25 foot RV each night. We start in Anchorage and don't have a route yet. Suggestions would be helpful.

Mentioned in this post
Alaska
Alaska
United States
Santa Cruz...
Destination Expert
for Santa Cruz
Level Contributor
33,009 posts
6 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: RVing for first time

We did our first RV in Alaska in 2000. We loved it. We had three weeks. We went to Denali, with a stop at Talkeetna for a flight over McKinley, stayed there overnight...there is a nice place to park with trees. Stayed at Riley Creek campground in the park (advance reservations necessary..pretty far ahead of time). Nice campground, walking distance, as I remember, from the Visitor Center. Took the shuttle to Eileson..(sp?) and back, a whole day's trip. I believe they have changed the stops for the shuttles since then, but you could get off if you wanted and hike a bit, or a lot, and then pick up a shuttle which was coming back. Saw lots of wildlife and the bus driver gave a very good narrative and stopped for us to view the caribou and bears, etc. when they were spotted. On the way back on our way back we picked up three groups of backpackers who had been out for a day or more. While we were there we went to the dogsled exhibition, which was fascinating.

We then went to the Kenai Peninsula. In Seward there is a Sea Life thing, which is also a research and rescue operation worth seeing. You can park on the beach here...with hookups, as I remember. And there are hot showers.

I could to on and on, but DH wants dinner. If you have questions, let me know. You are in for a great trip.

We drove down to Homer. You can stay on the spit here, for a small fee, and they have dirty, overpriced showers and it can get rowdy. After the first night we moved to the Oceanview RV Park, which is on a very large grassy area, with great views. Good showers, a laundromat, convenience store. In Homer is a nice little museum where, when we were there, was an exhibit, downstairs of the Valdez oil spill, with a recording of the captain trying to explain himself and a lot of pictures of wildlife rescue operations.

We also drove over to Valdez on kind of a quick trip. We had intended taking the ferry from there, back to Seward, but we hadn't made reservations and it was full. The drive over there, however, was beautiful, and the State Fair was on in Palmer. Not a glitzy state fair, but you should see the size of the vegetables! We stayed there at the Palmer-Matanuska River Park, which is city run. We also stayed, I think on this trip, at the Eagle River State Park. We were the only people there. No hookups, but quiet and peaceful. This is at milepost 12.6 of the Glenn Highway.

Speaking of which, do you have a copy of The Milepost? It is a telephone size guide with great maps and descriptions of everything you pass, listed by mileposts. It also has helpful ads. You must have it. Just google it and you can get it online.

If you need a place to park in Anchorage my recommendation is the Anchorage RV Park, just out of town and across the road from the Alaska Heritage Center, which you will want to see. This park is spacious, under trees, with moose (don't anger them), nice showers and a rec room with TV.

Mentioned in this post
Alaska
Alaska
United States
Denali
Denali
2,188 Reviews
Denali National Park and Preserve, AK
Riley Creek
Riley Creek
75 Reviews
Denali National Park and Preserve, AK
Seward
Seward
Alaska
Homer
Homer
Alaska
California
Level Contributor
24 posts
Save Reply
2. Re: RVing for first time

Have a look at: lokeshshah.com/documents/…Prologue.html

I wrote a trip report of our first RV trip. May be helpful to you,

~Lokesh

Healy, Alaska
Destination Expert
for Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska
Level Contributor
43,222 posts
44 reviews
Save Reply
3. Re: RVing for first time

The other posters really said it all - I would just recommend staying at the state/national parks campgrounds, as they tend to be the best - at least if you don't want to be crammed in like sardines on a dirt pad. As suggested, the Milepost will be a great help to you, and I would also check the Nat'l Park websites as well as stopping at the visitor centers around the state, as they can help w/campsites as well. (Forest Service, BLM, etc.)

Here in Denali in an RV, you can stay at Teklanika, which is fairly far into the Park. There are other campgrounds as well - check them out at www. nps.gov/dena.

I have stayed at the one in Anchorage as well, and would highly recommend that one - you feel very away from it all, but you aren't. Also, Soldotna has a city campground that is right on the river - very spacious as well. Byers Lake in the Denali State park is very nice as well. Fairbanks has one right in the city, near the Chena River. That's just a few of many campgrounds around the state. If you do just decide to pull off the road, be very cautious that you aren't on private land - most pull outs are well marked in regarding to overnight camping, so keep your eyes peeled for these signs. Good luck - I am sure you will love your stay, especially going at your own pace. :)

Mentioned in this post
Denali
Denali
2,188 Reviews
Denali National Park and Preserve, AK
Byers Lake
Byers Lake
90 Reviews
Talkeetna, AK