Chicagoland MG Club: Driveline August 2017

(Continued from page 22)
get pictures of all the warning signs. Limited medical facilities and road services, it would be 735 KM (457 miles) to Inuvik, all rather ratty gravel road, and return (no other way out by road). MapQuest optimistically calls it 12 hours driving time each way. We didn't have enough spare tires to risk this one, so we didn't go there. I really wanted to do it, but it wasn't part of the mission statement, and I didn't feel the need to run another 900 miles of gravel road just to prove it can be done. So, turn around and head down YT-2/Klondike Highway with a short after-hours fuel stop at Stewart Crossing. An hour later we were nesting with an eagle's eye view of Pelly Crossing, again on the Yukon River, 455 miles for the day (in 12 hours driving time).

Arctic Circle visitor's station
Sunday, 7/23, up early, off and running again. No clubs in Yukon Territory, and maybe no MGs either. 177 miles to Whitehorse for a fuel stop and lunch mid-day, then looking for on oil change and/or car tires with no luck. Heading east on the Alaska Highway we crossed the Continental Divide, which I didn't realize was this close to the Atlantic Ocean this far north. A fuel stop late night at Nugget City near Watson Lake, YT, then catch the Cassiar Highway heading due south into British Columbia. Too dark to drive safely in wild animal country, tick off another 525 miles today.

Monday 7/24, long day driving, cruised into Smithers about 4-pm where we hit four different shops, all too late in the day for an oil change, so time for a late lunch break and try WiFi again. Typically bad McDonalds WiFI in Canada, I'm beginning to refer to this as the "communications desert". Another 40 miles on dark again, so park with a couple big trucks and get some sleep after only 471 miles for the day.

Bridal Falls near Valdez
Tuesday, 7/25, 190 miles into Prince George, the first big city in a long time. Finally, Walmart Superstore would do an oil change (after a few hours delay). The lady tech got a kick out of driving the MG in and out of the service bay, didn't mind at all getting dirty. Then we found a McD's with bad WIFI, but tapped into good WiFi from Starbucks next door, and spent the rest of the day catching up some of the work load. Forest fires closed Route 97, so we had to detour on 16 and 5 which would add 105 miles. Hour and a half down 16, dark again dang it, but we found a slightly better rest stop for the night. Only 271 miles for the day.

Wednesday, 7/26, up early and haul out. These roads go on forever, and increasing traffic, but at least they are paved and faster. 175 miles to a fuel stop in Blue River, another 70 or so to a bag and go lunch stop in Little Fort. A bit concerned about high coolant temperatures when pulling hard on long hills, and then I noticed the Ignition light was glowing. In-cockpit voltage display was 12.0, not good but still tolerable. Next exit, poke a few wires, no change. Visit local NAPA parts store in Merrit, BC to pick up a jug of glycol (which wasn't needed) and ask if they could test an alternator. Couple of hours maybe, but we didn't want to wait, so fuel up here so we don't have to stop again, and drive on with hustle (using minimal electrical power). Just over 150 miles and three hours later we arrived without incident in Surrey, BC. 436 miles for the day, something like 2,250 miles since we left Tok, AK four days ago, and over 8,400 miles (and two oil changes) since we entered Canada one month ago. Alaska was a rather long side trip to visit one club, a few friends and few shops.

Last midnight sun in Alaska
We were in Surrey to visit Peter Tilbury who has a nice daily driver MGA. My car and trailer got tucked into the workshop. The MGA on the rack belongs to a friend, has been in the family since new, but has been off the road for 40 years, currently in process of recommissioning which should be done soon. Late night (early morning actually) I managed to catch up with photos and notes, and next day (7/27) writing this report.

Until next time, follow our follies at

~~ Barney and Elliot Gaylord  

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