What to Do in Your Alaska Winter Car Rentals During an Earthquake

With the number of earthquakes in recent years, we decided it might be best to help out our Alaska winter car rentals clients. If you don’t come from a place that is earthquake-prone, the thought of tremors can be nerve-wracking. However, not all earthquakes cause damage and those that do, don’t have to be fatal. In fact, some quakes are quite small. You may not even feel them!

But in the event of a larger quake, it is important to know what to do. Have an action plan, and make sure everyone you’re traveling with knows about it. Whether you’re out and about in your Alaska winter car rentals or just having a relaxing night in, here’s how to behave during an earthquake.

When driving your Alaska winter car rentals

It’s not uncommon for motorists to miss earthquakes. They’re often so subtle that the movement of the vehicle disguises it.

However, if you do feel an earthquake while driving, the first thing you need to do is stop the vehicle. Pull over into a safe area as fast as possible – this may even just be the side of the highway.

It’s important to remember to watch for power lines, bridges, and any other structures that could potentially fall in a quake. Avoid parking near these. If possible, a wide open space is best.

Finally, stay in your Alaska winter car rentals. Don’t get out of the car during the quake for any reason. Turn on the radio to wait for updates on the quake. And when the quake is finally finished, make sure to be careful of aftershocks – you may even want to wait 10 minutes before driving off again.

If in the great outdoors

If you’re out and about on foot when an earthquake strikes, the action plan is much similar to that of driving. Stay still, and avoid being close to any structures that could fall or collapse. This includes buildings and trees, as well. Remember that being near a building is your most dangerous spot, even in the exits. So stay in the open and wait until the quake is over.

If indoors

If you’re inside when the earthquake strikes, there are a few things you can do to make sure you and your family stay safe. While most people have heard the old tale about staying in doorways, this isn’t necessarily true anymore. For older houses, perhaps it may still be your best bet. But newer houses are built stronger than they used to be, and the rest of the house is often just as safe as a doorway.

What to avoid: lighting fixtures, furniture that could fall, glass, windows, outside doors, walls, and elevators. Never use an elevator in an earthquake.

If you’re already in bed, it’s best to stay there unless there’s a heavy lighting fixture overhead that could drop. Otherwise, stay in bed, and keep a pillow over your head for protection.

If you’re not in bed, take cover under a sturdy table, desk, or other furniture that is unlikely to collapse. This will keep you safe from falling debris. Stay in your safe spot until the quake finishes.

If you don’t have a sturdy piece of furniture nearby, then your next safe spot is an inside corner. Crouch in here and cover your head.

Remember that it’s always best to stay still during a quake. Don’t move about unless absolutely necessary and always protect your head. Be prepared for aftershocks.

Finally, make sure to clean up any chemicals or hazardous materials that may have spilled during the quake. It’s good to do a once over in the building following a quake.

For safe, reliable vehicles that can transport you through the state without a care, reserve your Alaska winter car rentals from Avis today.

See Alaska’s Glaciers in Your Alaska Winter Car Rentals

Anyone who has been around the state in their Alaska winter car rentals knows that the Alaskan landscape is absolutely incredible. It has a haunting kind of beauty that stays with you for life, even long after you’ve left.

The glaciers, undeniably, are a major contributor to that everlasting feeling of beauty. If you’ve never seen a glacier before, you’re in for a treat. You’ll never forget the first time you view one, and chances are, you’ll want to go back for more.

But how can you see Alaska’s glaciers? By foot, by Alaska winter car rentals, or by boat! The way you choose to get there is entirely up to you and your preferences, but there are plenty of options. You can go solo or in a guided tour, of which there are plenty. Here are just a few.

See the glaciers from the air

Seeing the glaciers by air offers a truly unique experience. While you won’t be able to get up close and personal with the calving, you’ll get a better idea of the sheer size of these edifices. The glaciers are, after all, enormous. And seeing them by foot or boat doesn’t quite offer the same indication of their size.

Piedmont glaciers are the best ones to see by air. These can be found in Southeast Alaska and offer a fan-like spray of rock and ice across the base of the mountain range. By plane, you’ll be able to see the full extent of the formation.

By land

While you certainly can’t take your Alaska winter car rentals up on the glaciers, you can still see them by motor on land. ATV tours offer you the chance to glide over the glaciers and to see them intimately.

Of course, you can also hike the glaciers as well. You’ll never see anything quite like them or have a hike that is nearly as beautiful. Make sure to bundle up and bring a guide. It’s best to never hike the glaciers alone. But since you’re unfamiliar with the terrain, guided hiking tours are really your best bet for seeing the ice caves and glaciers.

By water

One of our favorite ways to see the glaciers is by water. There are several cruise options that go along the shoreline to let passengers see tidewater glaciers. You’ll be able to actually witness as parts of the glacier break off and drift into the ocean. The cracking of the glacier is loud enough to hear and is a sound that you’ll definitely remember forever.

Another benefit of seeing the glacier by kayak or cruise is the number of marine animals you’ll catch sight of. Sea otters, harbor seals, marine birds, even a whale or two if you’re lucky! These beautiful creatures truly round out the trip.

Combining Alaskan favorites

If you want to take part in one of Alaska’s traditional pastimes when seeing the glaciers, then the dogsled tour is the one for you. However, you’ll have to wait until the spring for this one. The dogsled tour only runs in the summer. But it’s worth the wait! And you may want to book early. You’ll often have a chance to see moose, Dall sheep, black bears, and mountain goats while sledding up to see Colony Glacier.

As mentioned, it’s best to book ahead. There is a range of tour options, and with early booking you’ll have the full range to choose from on your specified dates. This definitely isn’t one you’ll want to miss!

Book your Alaska winter car rentals from Avis today to ensure you have transportation when you want to see our great state’s glaciers!

Take Your Alaska SUV Rentals to See the Northern Lights!

Alaska is known for stunning views – but not just on land. The Aurora Borealis, or the Northern Lights, offer a spectacular light show to anyone willing to stay up to watch it. While the best times are in September and March, you will still be able to take your Alaska SUV rentals out to see the lights.

If you don’t want to go on a random chase, then guided tours to the lights may be your best bet. However, you’ll want to bundle up and bring along a little energy! This certainly isn’t a day trip.

When to see the lights

As mentioned, September and March are the best months. This is because the Earth is tilted at just the right angle in relation to the Sun to make the lights clearer and stronger. However, you’ll still get a chance to see them during other months of the winter, from mid-September to late April.

The best nights to take your Alaska SUV rentals are those with clear skies. Aim for between 10 pm and 2 am, as around midnight is the best time to see the lights. Like we said – you’ll want to bring some energizer with you!

On an inland plain or mountaintop will suit best. You want to avoid light pollution when hunting for the Northern Lights. This includes light from the moon. Odd as it may seem, overly bright light from the moon can wash out the Northern Lights to the point where you will barely be able to see them.

It’s best to go a minimum of a week before or after the full moon, and certainly not during the days the moon is at its fullest.

Where to see the Aurora

The further north you go, the easier it will be to see the lights. The best latitude for Aurora Borealis viewings is between 65° north and 70° north. Head to remote northern regions to get the best experience. In fact, you may even want to cross the border into Canada. Coldfoot in Yukon Territory will offer stunning views of the lights and landscape.

The most important thing to keep in mind is to get out of urban areas. Even the smaller towns and villages of Alaska have some light pollution, and leaving their outer limits will allow you the most promising view of the lights.

If you want to stay in America, you can see the lights near Fairbanks, Barrow, and Wrangell-St. Elias National Park. While other places will offer you glimpses of the light show, these regions will provide the most likely clear view. They also offer the benefit of plenty of daytime activities to enjoy! Glaciers, rafting, fishing, hiking, tours of historic places, and more are on offer in these towns.

Take a Guided Tour

If you’d rather not take your Alaska SUV rentals out by yourself to find the lights, there are tours you can join. Which one you join will depend on your own preference. But there are plenty on offer that span from just a single day to several days and include other opportunities like a dip in Chena Hot Springs. Here is a good place to look at which tour might be best for you.

What to bring

It’s important that you bundle up and bring extra blankets in your Alaska SUV rentals. Alaska gets cold in the winter, and sitting for long periods of time waiting for the lights can get mighty chilly. Bring extra blankets to bundle under, and even a heating candle if you want extra assurance. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to bring along some cocoa and broth in thermoses!

No Northern Light trip is complete without the perfect Alaska SUV rentals. Reserve yours from Avis today.