Winter Break Up and Climate Crisis Dilemmas for RVers

We’ve been warned. And so far, winter break up is living up to the hype. As the fifth season of the North Country, break up is what happens when the days get warmer, and the snow starts melting. Basically every unpaved surface in the state looks like a giant mud bog for the next month.

winter breakup in Alaska
This is why winter breakup is no fun.

Think about it. All that snow has to go somewhere, right?

All that pretty white snow doesn’t just melt away kindly. Winter break up is a time consuming process that is as unpredictable as the conditions on Denali. And just like my crazy musher friend, winter does what she wants, when she wants.

Sometimes the morning dawns beautifully, with cold 20-degree temperatures and the promise of a sunny afternoon that just might hit 35-degrees. Other days, she wakes up as grumpy as a cold January dawn, cloudy, with wet snow that turns to sludge by afternoon.

Sunrise on Willow Lake, Alaska
What a gift to see the sun before 9 am!

As much as winter break up sucks, the rapid shift to more daylight more than makes up for the icy roads and muddy roads.

Daylight is coming on strong. The sun is up before 7am, and doesn’t set until just after 9 pm. We are already experiencing a crazy amount of daylight like I’ve never seen outside of July in the lower 48. I can’t wait to see what next month looks like. The following photo was taken from our deck at 9:45 pm a few nights ago. Each night, it’s taking longer to reach darkness.

April night in Alaska
No need to wear headlamps at night anymore.

Alaska is so weird. It always gives you more than you need, whether you want it or not. What you do with that abundance will make or break you.

We recently had another type of break up around here. Our crazy musher friends drove back to Colorado last week. For the safety of their dogs, they have to leave Alaska before it gets too warm to travel with the crew. Their departure was a sad day, one that arrived before we knew what hit us. We feel their absence every day. They played a key role in making this winter the adventure of a lifetime. Those crazy mushers deserve their own post, which I will get to once I find a quiet time to pull the right words from my heart.

About that Weather . . .

Meanwhile, since we are on the topic of seasons, weather, and climate, I wanted to share a pretty cool article that I was featured in recently. The article “Americans Living in RVs Cope with Climate Change,” is in the latest issue of Nonprofit Quarterly.

Nonprofit Quarterly RVing and Climate Change Article Spring 2024
Read the story.

Written by Cinnamon Janzer, the article explores how full-time RVers like us are coping with climate change effects. Cinnamon did a stellar job on the piece. Check it out.

Climate challenges aren’t keeping RVers off the road, but they are changing how people think about and prepare for travel, and where they go in the first place.

“In the Upper Midwest, we had our first tornado alert in Wisconsin. We had a flash flood evacuation in South Texas. It really brings home the fact that in an RV you are just not protected as well as you are in a house,” Agredano said. “It started becoming very apparent that keeping an eye on weather needs to be a priority.”

Americans Living in RVs Cope with Climate Change

The author found me because of our blog, “How Climate Change Impacts the RVing Lifestyle,” and this RV LIFE article I wrote a few years back. It still ranks high because it gets a fair number of interesting comments, to put it nicely.

We’ve just spent seven months living in one of the harshest climates on the continent. It wasn’t easy, and there’s more to come I’m sure. But I’m grateful for the challenge, and confident we are better equipped for the climate conditions we will encounter once we jump back into the full-timing lifestyle.

4 thoughts on “Winter Break Up and Climate Crisis Dilemmas for RVers”

  1. I hope you get to try birch water! And hike Dogsled Pass! And canoe to a cabin! And see sunlight streaming in your window at 1130 pm! And hike on a glacier! There’s so much adventure left ahead for you! ❤️


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