Keeping You – And Alaska’s Bears – Safe in your Summer Alaska SUV Rentals

If you’re traveling around Alaska in your summer Alaska SUV rentals, you’re likely going to see a bear. While many people speak of bears as scary creatures, they’re beautiful and, if you know what to do, will do you no harm. Unfortunately, there’ve been a great number of incidents of bear deaths by those who are scared. However, we want to stress that bears don’t need to be a threat. They’re part of our wildlife, and should be loved and protected.

That’s why we’ve put together a little list to keep both you, and our bears, safe from harm this summer. As long as you do everything right both you and our bear population should be able to co-exist peacefully! After all, if you want a truly Alaskan experience, that comes with living alongside these animals.

Remain calm

Remain calm. That is the most important thing to remember. If you have kids, this is the first thing you should stress to them before setting off in the wilderness. Remain calm, don’t run. Stay still and stay relaxed.

If you can, begin to back up slowly. But if the bear follows, don’t begin to run. Just stop, hold your ground, and avoid seeming threatening.

Let them know what you are

It’s good to let the bear know you’re human. This may sound silly, but speaking calmly to a bear can actually put the pressure off. That first moment of contact can be startling, but a calm voice to remind the bear you’re human may actually relax them enough to set them off in the opposite direction. Many bears in Alaska are more used to humans than you may think, and, hopefully, understand that we won’t hurt them.

Give them some space

If you see a bear while in your summer Alaska SUV rentals, and waiting for them to clear off your campsite, give them a minute. Just remain in the car, or find a new spot.

If you’re out and about, just give them some space. Bears will only attack if they feel threatened. They have no desire to attack humans. So if you see a bear, keep your distance (but you probably don’t need that reminder!) and let them do their own thing. Female bears and cubs need a little extra space. Mama bear doesn’t want her cubs to feel threatened, so show you’re no risk by leaving them plenty of personal space.

Move along

If you see a bear at the side of the road, some people will stop to take a picture. While this may be tempting if you’re just visiting and have never seen a bear, it’s best to move your summer Alaska SUV rentals along. Heavy crowds can be agitating and frightening – imagine how you’d feel!

Remember also to keep an eye out at night. Turn your lights up around bends with low traffic, and be aware of the shoulders. Any movement on the sides of the road should activate further response, like slowing down.

Avoid areas with animal smells

Fish and animal carcasses, areas with lots of berries, and areas with large, round balls of dung (bear dung most likely!) are best avoided. While it may seem appealing to camp near a berry patch, you’re also more likely to have a visitor at night.

Other areas to avoid are those with thick brush. In here it’s a lot harder to see bears or for them to see you.

Make noise and walk with the wind

When walking through the woods, make noise. Bears will be less startled if they know you’re coming. Speak loudly, sing, tromp on the twigs – whatever you need to let nearby animals know you’re on your way. Walking in groups is always best to help alert bears, as well. More likely than not, they’ll clear out to get their space and give you yours.

If possible, walk with the wind. When the wind blows across your back, it carries your smell in front of you. This helps alert the bear to your presence.

Keep your food to yourself

First, don’t feed bears. This only gives them reason to come back, and could cause protectionist behaviors around food. This means also that you should never give bears in the river any of your food. If you see a bear coming, stop fishing, or give your line slack in case there’s a fish on it.

Second, invest in a bear-proof food barrel. These can be found in most outfitter shops, perhaps even for rent, and will protect your campsite from unwanted nighttime scavengers.

In the case of attack, if bears come close despite your calm and assertive stance, make some noise. Bang pots or speak loudly. Always drive the bear away from you rather than run from it. If a brown bear looks ready to attack, play dead. Black bears are often scared off. If you’re really concerned of attack and playing dead isn’t working, finally you may bring out bear deterrent.

Bears are beautiful creatures, who are, generally, quite harmless. Don’t threaten them and they shouldn’t threaten you! Our summer Alaska SUV rentals clients rarely have close encounters with bears, and bear attacks in Alaska are quite rare. Remember, stay calm, and when in doubt, stay inside.

Reserve your summer Alaska SUV rentals today!

Camping with Kids? Be Prepped in your Summer Alaska SUV Rentals

Camping can be a challenge in itself. When you toss kids into the mix, the whole thing takes a lot more preparation. Worth it, of course! If prepared well, your camping trip will spur a lifelong love of camping and the wilderness in your children. If not, it could leave them whimpering to sleep in your summer Alaska SUV rentals.

We’ve created a small checklist to help you pack your summer Alaska SUV rentals accordingly. While many experienced campers may know these things already, it doesn’t hurt to have a little reminder.

Don’t overdo it with the snacks

While it can be extremely tempting to have a weekend full of typical camping food – hot dogs, marshmallows, s’mores, the works – it won’t offer a nutritional enough diet to keep the kids happy. Though they may be thrilled at the prospect of a weekend in the woods with junk, their stomachs will naturally start to say otherwise.

Try to balance out eat day with healthy food. Granola, fruit, and fresh veg will go a long way to keeping the kids happy. Keep in mind also that things like eggs and peanut butter can stay out of the fridge for a couple days without going off. Super nutritious and delicious!

You can’t go wrong with a little canned fish, as well. Tuna pasta tosses with K-D and broccoli on the fire are fairly healthy, tasty additions. Alternatively, fire top scrambles with veg, salami and cheese sandwiches, crackers with jam, nuts, and quick mix bean burgers are easy and nutritious.

Extra layers and tarps – camp uphill

While most campers know to keep the tent uphill to avoid runoff, those extra couple layers are often forgotten. As usual, use a tarp under the tent and even one over in case of rain. But once you’ve set your tent up, add an extra layer (or two!) of woolen blankets to the inside tent floor. Bring sleeping pads for extra comfort, as well as insulation.

It also doesn’t hurt to add a couple layers to the outside. A few additional blankets for around the fire can’t hurt. Fires are good for keeping your front warm, but the shoulders can get chilly quickly, even beneath a hoodie.

Don’t forget to top up first aid

It’s easy to forget to replenish first aid. Much of the time, having things like indigestion medication, allergy treatment, and cold and flu medication may not be an emergency – unless you’re out in the woods. Before setting out in your summer Alaska SUV rentals, make sure to top up your first aid kit. Marshmallows and hot dogs can be tough on a little one’s tummy, and you don’t want their trip to be ruined.

Toilet paper – and lots of it

When in doubt, bring another roll. Enough said!

Games and equipment

The great outdoors can keep most people occupied for hours. However, that doesn’t always apply after dark. You likely don’t want your child out and about exploring when dusk arrives. Bring along a few board games, some puzzles, craft supplies, books, and coloring books for the kids. Make games out of what they’ve found in the woods that day. Perhaps the shells and sticks become part of a new art piece or homemade costume.

Fireside games are also quite good. Put on little plays for each other, or bring out the story time fireside games to work their imagination.

Extra batteries

There’s nothing more frustrating than running out of batteries in your flashlight when a little one has to use the toilet at night! Make sure to bring an excessive amount of batteries and 2-3 flashlights. That’s what the storage in our summer Alaska SUV rentals is great for, after all!

Be prepared for bears

Bears shouldn’t bother you. If you’re concerned, our blog article on dealing with bears can help. It’s important to remember that bears aren’t a threat. Talk to your children in advance about how to deal with them. Come up with an action plan that is easy for them to remember. Rehearse it. Often, simply standing your ground, speaking calmly to the bear, and not threatening them in any way will be enough to have the bear move along.

Don’t surprise the bears, and don’t scare them – especially if cubs are around. Remember that mama bears are just as protective of their kids as you are! So threatening moves will cause a problem. Otherwise, you should be safe! Bear attacks are very rare around Alaska. We treat them as gorgeous, wonderful creatures with which we share this great wilderness.

Remember that bear mace should be used in rare and only emergency circumstances. To keep bears away from your campsite, don’t bring food in the tent, and invest in a bear-proof food barrel.

Begin your camping trip by reserving your summer Alaska SUV rentals from Avis today!

Visit Alaska’s Nationals: An Overview of the State’s Parks

What’s Alaska known for? Breathtaking views. Excellent, fresh seafood and game. Wild adventures in the great outdoors. A culture entirely its own. And, it’s stunning national parks.

There’s simply nothing more beautiful than waking up to the gorgeous landscape in one of our parks. Except, perhaps taking a scenic drive through in your budget Alaska car rentals. The only problem? How to pick just one park to visit!

If you live in Alaska, or if you’ve got your budget Alaska car rentals for an extended period, choosing a park won’t be a problem. You’ll have plenty of time to see them all. But whether you’re trying to choose the one to visit, or deciding on which one will be first on your list, you’ll need to know a bit more. Here’s a very brief overview of just a few of Alaska’s parks.

Denali National Park and Preserve

We’ll start with the big one. Almost everyone knows of Denali National Park and Preserve. It’s 100 years as a national park has been marked by photographic interest and heavy tourism. But don’t be diverted – the crowds never reach an unbearable point. It simply means you’ll want to book early if you want a camping site.

Driving the park road in your budget Alaska car rentals will offer you an exciting way to see a large section of the 6 million acres of land that make up Denali National Park. Wildlife and mountaineering – you’ll get a full Alaskan experience in this national preserve.

Wrangell-St. Elias National Park

Despite being the largest park in the USA, Wrangell-St. Elias National Park is one of the less visited. As such, there are fewer services and amenities in the region. However, you can drive across the 13.2 million acres to see various landmarks and wildlife sights, including the ghost town of Kennecott Mine.

The drive along is on the bed of an old railway, signifying the deep historical connections this region had to mining. See McCarthy, which is accessed by footbridge, or head up to Root Glacier for a bit of hiking. However, if you want to really see the extent of the region, buy a package from St. Elias Alpine Guides. It’s definitely worth it!

Kenai Fjords National Park

Simply put: the fjords are stunning. For this one, you’ll want to find a nice, safe place for your budget Alaska car rentals and leave them behind for a few hours – the fjords are best seen by boat. While you can walk in the park around the Exit Glacier in Seward, the boats offer marine-life sightseeing and a more extensive view of the fjords. Furthermore to top it off, it’s not uncommon to see puffins perched along the seaside cliffs.

In the meantime, visit the Alaska Sealife Center for a closer view of the fish, birds, and sea mammals that live in the park. But, you may also want to check out the Kenai Fjords Glacier Lodge near Aialik Bay. You’ll find great food, fun activities, and a chance at the glacier-and-wildlife cruise.

A wide selection

The problem simply is that there are just too many great parks in the area. Yet, to go into detail of all of them would be tough.

We could go on and on about the incredible hike through the pumice and rock by the Ukak River in the old volcanic site of Katmai National Park and Preserve. Or about the bear viewing opportunities in this same park.

And what about hiking and kayaking adventures in Lake Clark National Park? Or the Glacier Bay tour in Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve that will offer extraordinary glimpses into the glacial habitats of wildlife? Have you hiked or flown into Gates of the Arctic to see the sheep, bears, and other wildlife that rest among the Arctic Tundra and boreal forests? Finally, the caribou, portaging opportunities, and sand dunes of Kobuk Valley National Park and Kobuk River may be enough to draw you in to this great park.

Needless to say, you’ll never run out of parks to visit in your budget Alaska car rentals. So reserve your vehicle from Avis today, and go on an adventure of a lifetime.

How to Stay Safe in your Alaska Spring Car Rentals During Fire Season

Spring is a beautiful time in Alaska. The snow and ice begin to melt, and the blossoms open up to offer a breathtaking backdrop to the myriad outdoor adventures this state offers. It’s a time when you can drive your Alaska spring car rentals around the state to explore the landscape, without worry of severe storm.

Or is it? Unfortunately, spring also means that fire season is nearly upon us. You may have caught news already of fires sparking up across the state. And while authorities are claiming that fire season this year won’t be as bad as the last, it’s still something about which you should have knowledge and protection.

You may think that staying safe in fire season is controlled by chance. However, there are some things you can do to make sure you stay safe in your Alaska spring car rentals road trips and daytime explorations.

What is fire season?

Fire season comes about in heavily wooded regions that are experiencing dry conditions. They can be the effects of natural causes, or consequences of irresponsible hikers and woodsmen. It often occurs around spring and summer, when the weather is driest.

In places like Alaska, where fire season can be quite devastating, crews and authorities are on call in case of fire. They have strategies and backup plans to prevent the fire from spreading as much as is possible. Unfortunately, wildfires are just that – wild and often difficult to deal with. That’s why we need every day people doing all they can to prevent the possibility of fire.

Always put your fire out

This may seem like common knowledge, but there’s no harm in a reminder. If you’re camping in Alaska, make sure to always put out your fire before bed or before leaving. Even a few embers can be enough to start a fire in the right circumstances.

A great way to ensure your fire remains under control is by keeping it small. Avoid the desire to use the “cheat method” with fuel if you’re an amateur camper. Always use fire starters instead, and keep your fire manageable. When you put water on the embers to snuff it, mix up the ashes with water using a stick or poker, and continue to pour more water on and mix until you’re sure the ashes are all doused.

Similarly, avoid smoking in the forests. Cigarette butts thrown into dry twigs or forest brush will ignite. If you must smoke, why not bring an ashtray in your Alaska spring car rentals? While we don’t want smoking in the vehicle, ashtrays will let you snub out the cigarette completely before disposing of the butt.

Camp smart: Pack your Alaska spring car rentals properly

Before setting off on your big camping adventure, make sure to check the restrictions, rules, and permits around fire usage in the area. Much of this information can be found online, but of course, a quick conversation with local officials can also be helpful.

Choose your site carefully. Campsites that are sheltered from the wind are ideal, as this will prevent embers and sparks from being picked up and carried. You’ll also want something close to a water source. Whether that’s a river, lake, or serviced campsite is up to you! Finally, bare dirt and rock flooring on the site is best. It may not be the most comfortable, but it’s better than flammable grass.

Once you’ve arrived to your site, make sure your site is properly prepared for fire. Clear away any brush, twigs, pine needles, leaves, and other dry flammables from the site. If you want to save time doing this, pack a broom in your Alaska spring car rentals. Have a bucket of water nearby at all times to put out fires that get out of hand.

If you’re a local of Alaska, you may already have an idea of how to behave during a wildfire. Just in case, this is a good source for a brush up on information.

Fire season doesn’t need to be dangerous for you. Be smart, plan well, and pack your Alaska spring car rentals with the proper equipment to stay safe.

Reserve your Alaska spring car rentals from Avis today to begin your wild camping adventure!

Reserve your Juneau Alaska Car Rental to Explore the Capital this Summer

Alaskan cities pack a big wallop. They may not be as glitzy and glamorous as the Lower 48, but they offer their own unique attractions and style. If you’re just visiting in your Juneau Alaska car rental, then you’re almost definitely familiar with Anchorage. But how much do you know about Juneau?

Juneau is a classic Alaska mix: history, outdoor adventure, beautiful surroundings, and an interesting cultural community. If you’ve never been to our state’s capital, we certainly recommend it. Tourism is still bursting in Juneau, despite its inaccessibility by road. But more than a million people arrive on its shores during the late spring and summer months, and trust us – they’re not mistaken. The sad fact is that many tourists are ready to see the capital, but many more Alaskans simply can’t be bothered to go, claiming costs of airfare or boat fees as the main reason.

It’s time to change that! Here’s just a bit of information about this great city.

Entertaining the kids

Of course, your experience of Juneau is going to be different depending on whom you’re traveling with. Is your Juneau Alaska car rental filled with rug rats or friends? If it’s rug rats, check out the kid-friendly Juneau Douglas City Museum. You’ll have the chance to learn about the intriguing history of Juneau, while your children explore the hands-on aspects of the museum and look at the more visually thrilling parts of the exhibit.

Travel the tramway

The Goldbelt Mount Roberts Tramway opened in 1996, and to this day remains the only aerial tramway in southeast Alaska. This incredible experience will open up unbelievably gorgeous views across the region. Rising from the docks in downtown Juneau, you’ll be taken up a steep ride over the rainforest and into the mountains. If you’re scared of heights, though, you may be a little off-put – the tramway is one of the most vertical in the world.

The price may seem as steep as the climb, but trust us when we say it’s worth it. Kids aged 6-12 ride for $16 for a full day pass and adults ride for $33 for the full day. Kids below 6 ride for free. You can purchase tickets at the Tramway Station at 490 S Franklin St. or, if you’re coming in a cruise, at your ship’s Shore Excursion department.

Once you’ve taken the tramway up, you still have plenty of things to see. Don’t just head back down to your Juneau Alaska car rentals! Take a hike through trees reaching 200 feet in the air to the sub-alpine meadow. Make sure to pack a snack! Or maybe you want something a little more substantial? In that case, head to Timberline Atop Mount Roberts for an unforgettable dining experience to enjoy the view.

We could go on. There’s so much more to do, including the Nature Center, the Raven Eagle Gifts & Gallery, and Chilkat Theater as well as the other natural wonders atop Mount Roberts.

Food in Juneau

Let’s be honest – Alaska is a state known for seafood and fresh game. We embrace that fact. And the chefs in Juneau definitely know how to make a mean meal. You’ll want to explore the culinary community of the city to make the most of the fresh products. You may never want to leave! But we can tell you one thing – driving your Juneau Alaska car rentals on day trips and to explore is a lot cozier with a belly full of fresh-off-the-shore fish.

Getting there

Getting to Alaska’s “big city” won’t allow for a straight shot down a highway. But that doesn’t mean that getting there is overly difficult, either. All charter, regional, and major airlines service Juneau International Airport and if you’ve got airline miles, it shouldn’t use too many to get from Anchorage to Juneau.

Not a fan of a fly-by over the state? Take the Alaska Marine Highway ferry system. This is great to take either car-free or in your Juneau Alaska car rentals after traversing the Alaskan-Canadian Highway for an amazing driving experience.

Juneau has so much more to offer than what we can explore here. Whale-watching, hiking trails, aerial glacial sightseeing – Juneau is simply a place for relaxing, amazing experience. Don’t hesitate – book your Juneau Alaska car rentals from Avis today.

Take Your SUV Alaska Rentals to See One of the Toughest Ski Races

If it isn’t extreme it isn’t worth it – at least that’s what some Alaskans think. Every year, Summit Lake is home to one of the toughest, most extreme alpine skiing events and most thrilling snowmobile races – all packed into one. This month, Arctic Man comes back to Alaska from April 3 to 9. If you’re looking for a little last minute winter action before summer hits, take your SUV Alaska rentals up to Summit Lake to catch the Arctic Man races.

About Arctic Man

Arctic Man has been running since 1986 in the Hoo Doo Mountains of Summit Lake, Alaska. It is a combination sport, with teams of one downhill skier and one snowmobile driver.

The skier starts off the race at an elevation of 5,800 feet. They then ski down a 2-mile slope to the bottom of a canyon, so steep that it takes them 1700 feet lower in elevation in that short distance. Once in the canon partners meet up to continue the race. Once joined, the skier takes hold of a towrope attached to the snowmobile to travel the last 2.25 miles at 86 mph. For the last 1200-foot drop, skier and snowmobile separate again for the skier to ski the second mountain.

Book early

Roughly 13,000 spectators attended the 2016 Arctic Man. Clearly, adventure-junkies from around the world are ready to pounce. This means that the small village around this mountain tends to book up quickly.

If you want to attend this year’s event and you haven’t booked a hotel or your SUV Alaska rentals yet, it’s time to get on it quickly. We want to make sure you get the rental you want at the rates you deserve.

If you already have your SUV Alaska rentals, but you’ve decided to extend your trip to see Arctic Man, talk to your rental agency to discuss extension policies and potential fees that will apply.

The schedule

The schedule of Arctic Man will vary based on whether or not you’re partaking in the race or spectating. Spectators won’t have much to do before the actual race day, Thursday, April 6. In the two days before that, the course is open for practice, however. For those who aren’t satisfied with just one day, you may want to take your SUV Alaska rentals up to the mountain to check it out. It can be fun to see the build up of excitement in the days leading up to the race.

The race begins on April 6 at 11 am, though forerunners begin at 10:30 am. Make sure not to book your SUV Alaska rentals and hotels too tight – if in the case of inclement weather or other issues, the race will be postponed until Friday, April 7 or Saturday, April 8 if Friday is cancelled, as well.

Try your luck by taking part in the raffle. Tickets are $60 a piece, or $100 for 2. The draw takes place at 11 pm on April 8, and has a variety of grand and cash prizes, including credit at places like Polaris and to buy a vehicle.

Parking for your SUV Alaska rentals

Taking your SUV Alaska rentals up to the races? Fortunately there’s parking, but you’ll need to register in advance.

The parking pad map can be found here. It’s just off the Richardson Highway and can fit a few hundred vehicles comfortably. This is a good spot to set up camp while you watch the races. Costs of parking can be pricey, but the spots are well-sought after and can be tough to get. After March 1, the price is $160 for a spot plowed spot with security and patrol, outhouses on site, dumpsters, and a nearby medical tent.

Don’t miss out on one of Alaska’s most exciting events. Reserve your SUV Alaska rentals today!

Celebrating 150 Years of Alaska! Fun Facts You May Not Have Known

This March 30, we celebrated the 150th anniversary since America bought Alaska from Russia. The 49th state, but the Northern most one divided from the “lower 49”, we’re proud to call this unique, young state our home. And it certainly is unique! Here are a few fun facts about the state to ponder while you’re out and about enjoying the landscape in your Alaska car rentals this spring.

Alaska: the 49th State

On March 30, 1867, the United States of America purchased what would become our 49th state from Russia for a mere $7.2 million. In fact, Alaska is just 50 miles from the Western most tip of Russia!

However, Alaska wasn’t granted statehood until 1959. Before that time it was the Department of Alaska, the District of Alaska, then the Alaska Territory before its place as our 49th became official.

Wildlife population: 50% of human

The wildlife population is Alaska is famous. From polar bears to reindeer, Alaska is a state romping with beautiful, enormous creatures. But did you realize that the total population of black bears, polar bears, brown bears, and moose is nearly half the population of people in the state? With only 737,000 people in Alaska, it is definitely one of the under populated regions of America; the overall population density is less than 2 people per square mile. But with 175,000 moose, 100,000 black bears, 30,000 brown bears, and 4,700 polar bears, you’re almost as likely to come across a wild animal in your Alaska car rentals as you are to come across a person!

Be careful though. This high population of wildlife unfortunately also means there’s a higher likelihood of fatal collision. Roughly 550 to 800 moose are killed each year from motor vehicle collisions on the highways. That’s why driving safely and undistracted in your Alaska car rentals is so critical.

The largest state

Which state is America’s largest? If you guessed Texas, you’d be close – but, still wrong. In fact, Alaska is more than twice the size of Texas. Don’t think that’s impressive? Well, not only is Alaska America’s largest state, it is also only exceeded in size for a single region’s landmass by 16 countries in the world.

Speaking of size, Alaska’s largest lake takes up roughly the same land area as Connecticut. It’s Lake Iliamna in Southwest Alaska at the north end of the Alaska Peninsula. Head on up in your Alaska car rentals to look for the legendary Lake Iliamna monster.

What’s in a name?

Like many places across Canada and the United States, this state’s name comes from an indigenous word. “Alaska” is derived from an old expression from local indigenous tribes, meaning “object to which the action of the sea is directed.”

Furthermore, Alaska is the only state name that can be typed using just one line of a computer keyboard.

The wildlife and fishing of Alaska

Alaska is known for its wildlife. So, naturally, there must be some quirky facts about them!

It’s illegal in the state of Alaska to disturb a sleeping bear in order to take its photographs. That makes sense! After all, the saying goes, never wake a sleeping bear.

The fishing and seafood industry across the state is crucial to its economy. It maintains the livelihood of large numbers of residences, while also ensuring their food supply is maintained throughout the year in a landscape that doesn’t take kindly to agriculture. This industry is the largest private industry employer in Alaska.

Of course, it makes sense that fishing would be so important. The state has over 3,000 rivers and an incredible 3 million lakes. It’s bordered by thee seas, and contains 20,171 square miles of inland water, which is more than any other state. One more fish fact – the largest ever salmon was caught in the Kenai River, weighing in at a whopping 97.5 lbs!

Do you need any more reason to go fishing this summer? Alaska is definitely the place to do it. We love our state, and if you haven’t been yet, we know you will too. Reserve your Alaska car rentals from Avis for a summer of fun, fishing, and freedom from the bustle of the city.

Fall in Love with Homer, Alaska This Spring and Summer

This month with the Homer Winter King Salmon Tournament on March 25 we thought we’d revisit Homer, Alaska. The city is a great place to visit, but sometimes can be overshadowed by Anchorage or Fairbanks. That being said, there’s plenty to do in this great town. If you’re headed there already for the Homer Winter King Salmon Tournament, you might as well stay occupied when you’re not fishing – or at least know how to keep the non-fishers in your group occupied! You may find yourself dropped off with your tackle box while your family heads off in your Homer Alaska car rentals.

The Homer Winter King Salmon Tournament

You may be too late to take part in the 2017 Winter King Salmon Tournament, which took place on March 25, but it’s never too early to start planning for next year. After all, this tournament causes a rush in Homer Alaska car rentals and hotel occupancies.

This year the tournament’s champion was Ron Johnson, a native of Homer. He definitely took home the jackpot with $32,381.25 in side bets and $21,147.00 for catching a 25.65lb white king salmon. Second and third prizes were $14,098.00 for a 25.10lb king plus $8,062.50 in side bets and $11,077.00 for a 24.30lb king salmon. Sound enticing? If you missed your chance this year, make a note to book your Homer Alaska car rentals and register for the tournament well in advance for next year’s tournament.

And of course, if you don’t win, you at least have a fresh salmon dinner to look forward to!

Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby

Want another chance to win at fishing? Register now for the Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby. The Derby is an annual event beginning around mid-May and running through until mid-September. You need a ticket in order to participate in the Derby, and without one you aren’t able to claim a prize. It’s happened more than once where an unhappy angler caught a great fish, but wasn’t able to claim the prize because they were ticketless.

Get your ticket for the Derby now!

Water fun

Looking for something to do out on the water, without having to join in the fishing? Take a cruise around Kachemak Bay. This narrated cruise will provide you the chance to see whales, sea otters, ducks, and bald eagles that live in the area. The cruise stops at Eldred Passage and the Gull Island Seabird Rookery. Look around for some other harbor tours and water taxis that will show you around the various coves and bays on the coast.

Ever tried sea kayaking? Now’s your chance! If you’re new at this sport, sign up for a guided trip through one of the outfitters around the Bay. Otherwise, take a water taxi out to a private paddling area and enjoy. Return to the peace and quiet of nature on the water. As much as we love the freedom provided by our Homer Alaska car rentals, this type of freedom on the water is absolutely priceless.

Land adventures

There are plenty of adventures to take part in on land – like glacier hiking! You’ll need to take a water taxi across to Kachemak Bay State Park, but it’s definitely worth it. After hiking through boreal forest, you’ll get to Grewingk Glacier, where you can hike up for the beautiful views across the horizon.

Sometimes you just need to get away from the hustle and bustle of the city. Residents of Homer, Alaska are certainly aware of this. That’s why there are 5 remote cabins for public use around Kachemak Bay State Park. You can reserve these either online or at the state park office. Just make sure to pack your Homer Alaska car rentals with plenty of bug spray and extra layers.

Get out to explore Homer this spring! Reserve your Homer Alaska car rentals from Avis today for a thrilling adventure, both on land and by water.


The End of an Era: Saying Goodbye to the Alaska Aces

The Alaska Aces – one of this state’s gems. This team let us feel proud of our boys, and geared up to enjoy a good night of hockey and fun. But, unfortunately, now it’s time to say goodbye. After this season, you will no longer be able to bring your Alaska winter car hires to see the Alaska Aces play.

Reasons behind the team’s end

Team owners explained the difficulty behind the decision, citing financial burdens and the economic downturn as the final deciding factor. They explain that deliberations lasted months before a decision was reached.

It’s a sad fact that Alaska’s economy is not up for supporting the costs of a professional hockey team. Owners detailed the severe effects of job losses in Alaska, including $262,000 drop in season ticket sales and 1500 decrease in spectator numbers per game. It’s not just local spectator funding that’s down either. Sponsorship revenue fell $600,000 this year alone. In an age that’s concerned about keeping up with bills and putting food on the table, professional hockey teams need to take a break.

However, there is some light at the end of the tunnel. Who knows if the end of the team is permanent? The ownership team applied for Voluntary Suspension of operations – could that mean the team may restart with an upsurge in the economy? We can only hope.

In the meantime, let’s remember the great memories that this team has offered. Feel free to share your stories of taking your Alaska winter car hires to an Aces game in the comments below.

Season ticket refunds

Already put money down on a season? Don’t worry. You’ll get your money back. Owners expressed an apology towards loyal fans who have already placed a deposit on season tickets for the 2017-2018 season. All deposits will be refunded in full.

Catching the last few games

Fortunately, the season doesn’t end until April. That means that you still have a few more chances to take your Alaska winter car hires to see the Aces play before they cease operations.

Their first 7 games of March are unfortunately away games, with the Utah Grizzlies, Colorado Eagles, and Rapid City Rush. However, they come back to Alaska for a home game facing the Cincinnati Cyclones on March 15 at 7:15pm. Following that, they have 5 more home games throughout the month, each beginning at 7:15. These are March 17 and 18 against the Cincinnati Cyclones, and March 24, 25, and 26 against Rapid City Rush.

On March 29 and 30 they are away again to play the Fort Wayne Komets and the Quad City Mallards, respectively. They face off against the Quad City Mallards again on April 1, before finishing the season in their home rink. Their final three games will take place on March 5, 7, and 8 against the Idaho Steelheads.

Buy your tickets now to make sure you catch one of these games in your Alaska winter car hires before it’s too late.

A sad loss for Alaska

The loss is a substantial one for Alaska sports fans. The Alaska Aces held the role of Alaska’s only professional team. With their end, comes also the end of Alaska’s professional sports. Fans across the state are devastated and heartbroken by the news. For these fans, the team offered more than just somewhere to take their Alaska winter car hires on a Friday night – they bolstered state pride.

Stories and photos have been shared, signed jerseys worn with pride and nostalgia, and a small tingle of hope lingers on that this isn’t really the end – just a little road bump. Only time will tell.

For now, we honor the 15 year long history of the Alaska Aces. We thank this team for bringing Alaskan pride throughout the Southern 49 and to our own community.

Don’t miss the final games of this great team. Reserve your Alaska winter car hires from Avis today.

Potential Changes in the Dipnetting Agenda 2017

Alaska is known for its fishing industry. It’s a state pastime to head out onto the Kenai to fill the freezer with red salmon and maybe even keep a few for dinner that night. After all, there’s nothing better than fresh caught fish for dinner. And we just love hearing the stories our Alaska SUV rentals clients have about fishing in Alaska’s numerous rivers.

This year, however, there may be some changes to the dipnetting regulations around the Kenai. Before you panic – don’t worry, this practice will still be enjoyed and encouraged around the river. But regulations may shift to prevent 24-hour fishing and boat use, among other things. What are these regulations? And how will they affect you and your Alaska SUV rentals? Let’s find out.

Extended season

Let’s begin with the good stuff. When the proposal goes before Alaska’s Board of Fisheries, with it will be presented a proposal to extend the dipnetting season until August. Currently the season is from June until July. The extra month may benefit those who are also spending the summer hunting or fishing in other regions.

This proposal stems from a concern from dipnetters who claimed that last season, runs weren’t as strong as they’d like. Because of this, they believe that an extension of the season would help both their own need for fish to last the winter and to help manage fish population.

Increased bag limit

Present regulations allow fishers to bag 25 salmon and 10 flounder per household in the Upper Cook Inlet personal use fishers: Kenai dipnetting, Fish Creek dipnetting, Kasilof dipnetting, and Kasilof set gillnetting. The increases by 10 salmon for every additional household member. However, if the proposals are passed, the household bagging limit for salmon would increase by 10 fish. Now you really will be able to fill up your Alaska SUV rentals!

Use of boats and motors

There are several proposals that may ban or restrict the use of boats when fishing on the river. One proposal would entirely eliminate boat use on the river, while another focuses purely on the use of motors on the Kasilof River. The latter would allow boats with motors that do not exceed 10 horsepower.

Extension of territory

The Kenai River Sportfishing Association is looking to extend dipnet boat fishing boundaries. This proposal would see the boundaries move upstream towards Cunningham Park at river mile 6.6.

Elimination of the 24-hour emergency order

Regular fishing hours on the Kenai are the same daily, regardless of tides, and are from 6am until 11pm. But, these times may change in the instance of an emergency order for 24-hour opening. These orders follow the “Kenai River Late-Run Sockeye Salmon Management Plan” as outlined by the Board of Fisheries.

However, the City of Kenai has put forth a proposal that would eliminate the use of these emergencies orders due to safety risks to fishers. Their reasons rest in the difficulty of ensuring safety during the hours when heavy machinery are cleaning the beach.While fishers may not like this new elimination, it certainly makes sense in the overall consideration of civilian safety.

Shore-based dipnetting

Finally, a proposal has been put forth to allow landowners to fish from the shore. This would affect mainly those property owners who have property directly on the Kenai River. And their friends of course!

Mainly, these proposals shouldn’t too heavily affect our Alaska SUV rentals clients – except perhaps for the better. We are personally hoping for an increase in the bagging limit and extension of territory!

This is by no means a comprehensive outline of the nearly 200 proposals that will be put forth in the 14-day long public meeting. The meeting is currently in action, having begun on February 23 and will run until March 8. Only time will tell which of these proposals will be put into action.

In the meantime, start thinking now about your own fishing trip. It’s never too early to start planning! Reserve your Avis Alaska SUV rentals early to make sure you get the vehicle you want.