Travel to Alaska

My daughter and I are traveling to Alaska in July.  The trip is about 12 days.

Does anyone have recommendations for packing for that time of year?

I know it is early but I am excited and starting to make my "lists".


Happy New Year


  • I love lists, lol! AND I love to talk and think about packing. Over the last few years I've worked to refine things so I can travel with just a 22 inch carry on sized suitcase. For Alaska I'd take the same things I take when I travel to Yellowstone (I go there every year) and be ready as TravelHound says, to dress in layers.

    Here's my clothing list:

    3-4 SS tee shirts - I use Land's End cotton modal tee shirts. They sink wash well and dry overnight. I first saw them mentioned years ago on a wonderful capsule wardrobe blog called The Vivienne Files. She uses them as basic pieces in many of her wardrobes.

    2 LS tee shirts - same kind

    1 LS Dri-Fit 1/4 zip pullover - I use one I got at Macy's a few years ago, the Ideology brand but I noticed they didn't really have much choice this year. There are ones by many other brands including Nike and Under armor. They are lightweight but can add a really nice layer of insulation. I wear this all winter over a Lands End Heat Crew (their long under wear top which I size up and wear as a regular top) and can be fine outside doing something active with just this combo on with a puffy vest. I shoveled snow yesterday in this.

    3 pr pants - I always travel in jeans but the hiking pants TravelHound mentions work just fine. You might want 1 pr jeans and 2 pr hiking pants.

    base layer - I'm pretty cold tolerant and probably would not need a base layer in AK in July. I DO take a base bottom to Yellowstone because some of my days are spent sitting at geysers waiting for them to go off so will start out with the base layer and peel it off about mid-morning. I like the Hot Totties brand which is synthetic not silk but there are many available. This is a good time to purchase as things will be on sale!

    Puffy vest or puffy jacket - I'd go with the puffy vest but if you are from Florida or California you might not be as cold tolerant as I am and you might want a full jacket. If you are a Costco member, take a look at their puffy vest if they have any left. About $15 and very warm. I've traveled with one the last 2 years. It will squish down into a quart size ziplock bag.

    Waterproof rain jacket with hood - No matter where I travel I always have a waterproof rain jacket.  It works for blocking wind as well.

    Shoes - no more than 2 pr. Wear your heaviest on the plane. I usually wear athletic shoes for everything but I have horrible feet. If you are hiking and need boots, wear them on the plane.

    Lightweight gloves - glove liners - I wear the SmartWool brand but they are expensive and I'd not buy them unless you'll wear them in winter where you are.

    Hat/headband/gaiter - I'd take something warm for your head. I usually use fleece although a friend knitted me a cute hat and I've used that a lot this winter so far.

    Sunshirt - I'd probably throw in a sunshirt. This summer I converted to using sun sleeves to cover my arms but you've probably got a sunshirt and it won't be too hot for you.

    Underwear/socks/bra - I usually pack 4 pr unders but I don't mind washing them out every night. I bring 3 pr socks and wear them more than once and get by with 2 bras - wear one/pack one.

    I also wear this capsule wardrobe on my trips to Europe. All my shirts match all my pants match all my pullovers. Sometimes for Europe I'll take a cardigan instead of the LS Dri Fit although the drifit is so much lighter and less bulky to pack that I might not go back to the cardie. 5 shirts x 3 pr pants = 15 outfits.

    I bring a plastic clothes hanger and some clothespins for my "wash". I use a 2 gallon ziplock for my washing machine, lol.

    Do "pack on paper" first if you want to make sure you limit yourself to a small bag. Writing down what you'll take makes you think about things first instead of just grabbing stuff in your closet.

    Have a wonderful time!


  • Thank you for your info. I, too, am going to Alaska in July and your suggestions are very helpful.
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