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I have a 1985 1100 Shadow also. When I rode to Alaska, I left my Shadow at home and rode a Kawasaki KLR650. It was 4,000 miles from Kansas to Anchorage. The Shadow could have made it easy enough, but the KLR was a better choice for this trip.

The Alaska Highway will have about 5% of it under construction at any given time. 5% does not sound like much, but 5% of 1500 miles is more than I want to ride my Shadow on. In the construction areas, there will be much loose and sometimes deep chip rock. On the pavement there is often large pot holes.

On the non-paved highways in Alaska, there can be miles and miles of “washboard”. I have ridden my Shadow on washboard and know that it does not like it, feels like it is going to rip the bike apart. The KLR handles the wash board fairly well. If the KLR starts to shake too much, just speed up and it floats over the washboard. The Taylor Highway up to Chicken and Eagle was rough, but one of the best areas in Alaska, and less traffic than the main highways. The Top of the World Highway is paved from Alaska to Dawson, Yukon.

The Shadow’s 15 inch tire was a common size 20 years ago, but not all bike shops carry 15’s nowadays. Better call ahead if you are going to need a tire. A Dunlop 491 should make the whole distance.
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