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Smaller, separate RV for AK?

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To those who have been there, we are planning our AK trip in 2018. We have a 40' fifth wheel that is our home. Considering storing it either in WA or AZ and purchasing a small travel trailer, maybe 18-20'.
I'm thinking if we do this it will save a lot of wear and tear on our RV, but more importantly I want to be able to camp and travel to places that we might not be able to if we pull the beast 1f609.png😉. 
This would include being able to stop on the side of the road for the night, ferries, and smaller campsites. I know I would lose money on the resale of the RV, but I would just consider that part of the cost of our vacation. We will spend the entire summer there.
Comments and suggestions welcome

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You can take a bigger rig without an issue. It may be less "flexible" than a smaller unit, but it works just fine. 

We do have a smaller MH to go with our very large 5er and truck. It is for our convenience and not necessary. But we do find that we like using it a lot.

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I am of a similar mindset. I am also heading to Alaska next summer after a wedding in Utah in June. However I really don't want to haul my large (smaller by many standards) 27ft 5W all the way to Alaska and back...that's a lot of fuel. I don't want to buy something (not enough money) but would love to borrow or rent a little Casita or something, or even a cargo trailer. I'd go the truck camper route but I have a non-removable gooseneck ball in the bed of my truck.


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One thing to consider:  Are you planning on your trip to AK to be in "vacation mode".  I.E. gotta see everything right away and move on to the next place? Also when weather is bad will you be cooped up in a small(er) rig and not as comfortable as if you would be in your "home"?  Or since your large RV is your home (even if you have a sticks & bricks) while you travel do you want your trip to be very relaxed, in that you still have your home with you?

Wear and tear???  The roads through Canada and in Alaska are not much different than the 2 lane highways in the lower 48.  Yes, there are frost heaves and some construction areas to consider.  However, since you have your home with you and plan your trip for 4 months or so, you should not plan on driving more than about 200 miles in day, and really just plan on many 100 mile travel days and then spend at least 2-3 nights before moving again.  The risk of damage to your rig comes when you MUST be at the next place TODAY and that days travel is 300-350 miles away.  Then you are pushing it and perhaps not seeing the frost heave because you must drive at 55-60mph to get there. 

Additionally, as far as wear and tear, is your rig so poorly made it can't be taken on two lane highways with some construction areas and some dips and bumps along the way?????  Just a thought.

We took our home away from home, a 29' class A with a toad, to AK in 2016 for a 4 1/2 month trip. It was a total of 9 months away from the S&B.  We were always in our home so rainy days (quite a few of them) we were fine sitting at "home" watching the rain out the windows.  We moved when we wanted to, stayed longer to wait for weather to improve, moved sooner when we felt we saw all we wanted to.  We also had our Winegard Traveler satellite dish for Dish Network TV so we had access to TV almost all of the time we were in Alaska.  Hey, this is our "home" we we want all the comforts we have in our S&B. Also nice to see the local (Fairbanks or Anchorage) TV weather forecasts as well as TV news articles about AK while we were there.

Anyone thinking of an AK trip really should set up their rig, and learn how to, dry camp or boondock.  There are many, many places to stay without reservations if you will dry camp/boondock. Not being forced to stay in RV Parks, where you may have to make reservations to secure a spot, really allows for a relaxed trip.  

Larger rigs (40') does make it a little harder to find a place to park, but most of the places we stayed would accommodate a 40' rig.

We spent 139 days on our AK trip and only had elect hookups for 2 days. Only made reservations at Denali and the reservations were made about 2 1/2 weeks before we went to Denali.  Granted that is not for everyone, but it sure gave us a lot of flexibility in our travels.

If anyone is interested, here is a link to our AK trip blog. 


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