Inuvik, NWT Canada to Tuktoyatuk

AndyBees

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Joined
May 27, 2003
Location
Southeast Kentucky
TDI
Silver 2003 Jetta TDI, Silver 2000 Jetta TDI (sold), '84 Vanagon with '02 ALH engine
We travelled up the Dempster Highway to Inuvik in 1993 in the '83 VW Vanagon with the 2.0 Air-cooled engine. Inuvik is over 250 miles north of the Arctic Circle. We've been back to the Arctic Circle two or three times since that first trip in 1993.

Canada is extending the Dempster Highway about 137 kilometers north to the community of Tuktoyaktuk.

I'd love to make the trip to Inuvik again and hopefully on to Tuktoyktuk.

Here are couple of pics....





Below is my ALH '84 Vanagon. As some may know, we drove it to Alaska in 2014. Since the project was put on the road, I've driven it over 56k miles without any major problems ... On Alaska road trip, it handled the camper extremely well. Fuel mileage for the trip was just over 25.5 MPGs. Without the camper, it normally gets 34 to 36 MPG.

 

TDI smile

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Joined
Jul 11, 2012
Location
Edmonton, Alberta (b4 BC - LOWER MAINLAND = Chilli
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2002 TDI (ALH) with 513,000 km. First Owner and very happy... No Problems, never left us stranded on the Highway. Average useage is about between under 4 ltr. and 5 ltr. Normal longdistance travel: 4.1/100
One more year or so of ICEROADING to TUK. The Landroad should be finished by the end of 2017. Hopefully? Maybe we see us up North, Andy....!
 

Mike in Anchorage

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Jan 4, 2009
Location
Anchorage, AK
TDI
2016 Touareg Lux, 2015 Golf Sportwagen SE, new 4 Sept 2017;2009 VW Jetta TDI Sportwagen (Ruby) sold to VW on 22 SEP 2017
Somewhat related - I've wanted to bicycle the Dempster for a couple of decades. I think I have more reason to do so now. Thanks for the info.
 

TDI smile

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 11, 2012
Location
Edmonton, Alberta (b4 BC - LOWER MAINLAND = Chilli
TDI
2002 TDI (ALH) with 513,000 km. First Owner and very happy... No Problems, never left us stranded on the Highway. Average useage is about between under 4 ltr. and 5 ltr. Normal longdistance travel: 4.1/100
Somewhat related - I've wanted to bicycle the Dempster for a couple of decades. I think I have more reason to do so now. Thanks for the info.

Lots of European (mainly Germans) bike that road for years. Every Summer, we flew many People up to Inuvik with their Bicycles. It`s a dusty way back.
 

AndyBees

Top Post Dawg
Joined
May 27, 2003
Location
Southeast Kentucky
TDI
Silver 2003 Jetta TDI, Silver 2000 Jetta TDI (sold), '84 Vanagon with '02 ALH engine
30 years ago, (July 1986), we started up the Dempster but turned back after about 12 to 15 miles. There was a really bad place in the road.

As I stated previously, seven years later in 1993 we returned to drive the entire length of the road. We were in an '83 Vanagon with the 2.0 air-cooled engine.

Then, we returned to the Arctic Circle (less than half way to Inuvik, about 235 miles) in 1997 and 2001 with the same ol' Vanagon.

We had hoped to do the Dempster in the summer of 2014, but the weather was not favorable ...... lots of rain while in Dawson City. Also, some guys in Vanagons and Things that I was communicating with were saying the rain was bad.

We are planning a trip to Alaska for this summer. A couple of friends have ask to "tag along" with us. So, I'm not sure how this will work. But, if pans out okay, we may give the Dempster another run...

EDIT: Below is a pic of me and Vanagon at the Arctic Circle in July of 1993.

 
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da.hs

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Joined
Jul 28, 2012
Location
SK, Canada
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2010 Golf, DSG, silver (from new). 2010 Audi Q7 (from 2016), 2004 Touareg V10 (from 2018)
Interesting.. thanks. I drove to Inuvik in about 2000, in a little rental car out of Calgary. Had flown from England for a long vacation that year. Visited family friends in Whitehorse, saw a postcard of the Dempster Highway and went.. no preparation other than to check there really was a spare tire in the rental car. Not sensible in retrospect but no incidents. Looks like a reason to revisit it soon.

I've been on worse roads since though in more suitable vehicles. SK Highway 905 to Stony Rapids had many sections where speed was down to 10 or 15mph - road little more than sand or silt thrown on natural rock to smooth it out a bit. I believe it's quite a bit better now than six years ago when I last drove it.
 

AndyBees

Top Post Dawg
Joined
May 27, 2003
Location
Southeast Kentucky
TDI
Silver 2003 Jetta TDI, Silver 2000 Jetta TDI (sold), '84 Vanagon with '02 ALH engine
Wow!

I've been getting my "rig" ready for this trip. We want to drive the Dempster one more time!

We want to depart the last week in June or no later than July 6th..
 

geoman

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Joined
Aug 12, 2010
Location
woodstock ontario canada
TDI
2009 tdi jetta wagon
This has been a 'dream' trip for me since my neighbour showed me fam trip photos of their 'jaunt' in the late 70's in their Ford LTD. Always wanted to do NWT, Yukon, Alaska & all points north to the AC. Alas, life, work (& a disinterested wife lol) have gotten in the way of fulfilling this dream so maybe it will be a 2 month solo endeavor for me in my retirement future if the cheeseburgers don't get me first! I'm guessing you'd need a few jerry cans of extra diesel on hand as fuel stops might be hard to come by?
 

AndyBees

Top Post Dawg
Joined
May 27, 2003
Location
Southeast Kentucky
TDI
Silver 2003 Jetta TDI, Silver 2000 Jetta TDI (sold), '84 Vanagon with '02 ALH engine
There is fuel at Dawson City 25 miles west of the southern beginning of the Dempster. Then at Eagle Plains, about 220 miles up the Dempster, there is a service station, hotel, restaurant and campground. Of course there is fuel at Inuvik which is about another 255 miles.

The Dempster Highway was officially opened in 1978. We tried it in 1986 but had to turn back almost immediately due to a very bad stretch about 300 meters long...
 
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