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Old 12-23-2017, 09:26 PM   #1
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It's -5 degrees in North Pole, Alaska

It's been a warm winter here so far. This time last year was -52.

We are 6 months into a 3-year assignment to Alaska and want to explore the state. We have three kids (6, 3, and 1) and all of us enjoy the outdoors. This state is about a third of the size of the rest of the country and has an amazing variety of terrain and natural wonders.

The idea would be to buy a bus this winter and do what work we can during the winter and spring, then start exploring during long weekends and my 2-week vacation this summer. Before we leave the state, we'd like to be able to handle 4 seasons. Then, travel to our next (probably warmer) duty station when it's time. We're also thinking about living full-time at our next duty station.

No decision has been made yet, but I'll be reading through the archives here and maybe asking a few questions.

Right now, my main topics of interest:
1. Where to buy a bus in Alaska? How do I make sure it's mechanically sound?
2. What kind of maneuverability can I expect on rough roads?
3. How do I design for extreme cold?
4. How can I make this livable and fun for a family with small children?

Thanks everyone.
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Old 12-23-2017, 10:25 PM   #2
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I was gonna bust your ba11s.......Then I saw your normal temps. I was in Great Lakes IL for Boot Camp in the winter of 1993. -37.......-82 with wind chill. Think its still the record there. Dont mess around in that junk. 18 got frost bite needing surgery!!! What a miserable place that was. But now i laugh at the things we go through when young.

"reveille reveille. All hands heave out and trice up. The uniform of the day is as follows: Everything you own Ladies. 3 pair white socks, 1 pair dress socks. Underwear, sweatpants, 2 pair dungarees, t-shirt, sweat shirt, working blue shirt, sweater, jacket, peacoat, trench coat, ski mask, knit cap, towel wrapped around your mouth, gloves, boots, hands in pockets."

Thats what I woke to every morning.....

Doug
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Old 12-23-2017, 11:23 PM   #3
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screw that - the only way i do that kind of weather is INDOORS with sjort sleeves on and my heat system set on 78!!

mils La-Nina forming you may get off easier up where you are at. while the cold air is unleased on the southern tiers.. canada and the upper US.. esp great loakes.. (ugh me in ohio who HATES cold with a PASSION).. it will get cold but you may not have the endless cold like some years..
-Christopher
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Old 12-24-2017, 07:17 AM   #4
Skoolie
 
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It's usually no wind in this area, though it can sometimes blow. We will take the kids out hiking in -15 weather - haven't tried colder than that yet.

If you are a leader and your Soldiers get a cold weather injury up here, you will probably get a "relief for cause" and end your career. It's possible to dress for the cold and stay comfortable.

However, most of those boots rated for -40 are a lie.
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Old 12-24-2017, 09:23 AM   #5
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Unless they are rated for Antarctica, they are probably questionable. Personally, if my old Sorrels aren't enough, I would head for warmer climes.

But for extremes...try these...

APEX
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Old 12-24-2017, 10:39 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Defjr333 View Post
I was in Great Lakes IL for Boot Camp in the winter of 1993. -37.......-82 with wind chill. Think its still the record there. Dont mess around in that junk. 18 got frost bite needing surgery!!! What a miserable place that was. But now i laugh at the things we go through when young.

"reveille reveille. All hands heave out and trice up. The uniform of the day is as follows: Everything you own Ladies. 3 pair white socks, 1 pair dress socks. Underwear, sweatpants, 2 pair dungarees, t-shirt, sweat shirt, working blue shirt, sweater, jacket, peacoat, trench coat, ski mask, knit cap, towel wrapped around your mouth, gloves, boots, hands in pockets."

Doug
Ahh, brings back memories, not good ones. I was there the winter of 67 I don't remember the temps but, at that time it set some records. I was the RPOC and had orders to not take the company anywhere unless we could get indoors with no wait. I had a good company commander that would insure that there was room for us and call me before we would leave.
You had sweatpants and sweatshirts?
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Old 12-24-2017, 11:58 AM   #7
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How many people have done boot camp twice?
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Old 12-24-2017, 01:49 PM   #8
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Our youngest is leaving for Air Force basic training in Texas on Jan 23, and then he'll head straight to language school in Monterey, CA, then back to Texas. He's very happy to escape the Chicago winter for the first time in his life, he hates the cold. I told him there's a good chance he'll eventually end up stationed in Alaska, guess we'll see when he's assigned a language.
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Old 12-24-2017, 05:19 PM   #9
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How many people have done boot camp twice?
My husband did Air Force Basic and 4 years. Then I did Army and 4 years. He joined the Army when I got out and had to go through basic training for that service. He was the old man in the unit. The drill sergeants didn't hassle him as much and tended to let him join their conversations after hours.
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Old 12-24-2017, 05:21 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Drew Bru View Post
Our youngest is leaving for Air Force basic training in Texas on Jan 23, and then he'll head straight to language school in Monterey, CA, then back to Texas. He's very happy to escape the Chicago winter for the first time in his life, he hates the cold. I told him there's a good chance he'll eventually end up stationed in Alaska, guess we'll see when he's assigned a language.
My daughter just got out - her language was Arabic - which meant two years in Monterey and then the rest of her tour was in Georgia. She hated it and wished she'd gone into intelligence analysis instead.
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