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The Americans get constantly ridiculed how they never leave their own country. Very often those who ridicule the Americans for that fail to realise that the US is a size of a continent and even if you stay within the US it is possible to travel more extensively than Europeans within Europe within 15-20 countries.

I live in Finland which is of a geographic size smaller than about half of the US-states. Yet, the only foreign trips I've ever had have been to the neighbouring Russia. I've never bothered to visit Sweden or Estonia which are also next door.

Anywhere further afield is an absolute no no as I have a terrible fear of flying.

So if anyone deserves to be called a yokel it is not those Americans who never leave the US but me.

I don't think it's so much that they never leave their own country, but more like when they do they fail to realize they are in a different country. I've done quite a bit of travelling and when I do I try hard to keep my eyes and ears open and try to learn things about the place I am in. To me that's much more fulfilling and educational than the "Sun Tours" floks we've all seen who go from the airport to the hotel on the bus. Back on the bus for a sightseeing ride. Back to the hotel for dinner and drinks. Sit by the pool for a few days and then back on the bus to the airport. What have they learned?

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I don't think it's so much that they never leave their own country, but more like when they do they fail to realize they are in a different country.

....What have they learned?

I don't think you can speak for any other travelers and their experiences but yourself. Many Canadian snowbirds travel to the USA for warmer weather....what have they learned ? We already know what cross border shoppers learn.

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I don't think it's so much that they never leave their own country, but more like when they do they fail to realize they are in a different country. I've done quite a bit of travelling and when I do I try hard to keep my eyes and ears open and try to learn things about the place I am in. To me that's much more fulfilling and educational than the "Sun Tours" floks we've all seen who go from the airport to the hotel on the bus. Back on the bus for a sightseeing ride. Back to the hotel for dinner and drinks. Sit by the pool for a few days and then back on the bus to the airport. What have they learned?

I don't know but except for my Club Med trips to Mexico and Martinique I've learned plenty on my foreign trips. Even my Club Med trip to Turks and Caicos, I rented a dirt bike and toured a good part of the island and met the locals. I certainly learned plenty on my trip to Portugal, and even my trips as a 15 year old to the Bahamas and Barbados.

I've learned enough on my trips to Canada to post intelligently here, in spite of Canada's extreme differences from my own country.

Please try not to speak for all Americans.

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I don't know but except for my Club Med trips to Mexico and Martinique I've learned plenty on my foreign trips. Even my Club Med trip to Turks and Caicos, I rented a dirt bike and toured a good part of the island and met the locals. I certainly learned plenty on my trip to Portugal, and even my trips as a 15 year old to the Bahamas and Barbados.

I've learned enough on my trips to Canada to post intelligently here, in spite of Canada's extreme differences from my own country.

Please try not to speak for all Americans.

I certainly do not propose to speak for all Americans. I have had some great travels with Americans and to some of the darker corners of the planet. (I hope that doesn't come off sounding like the old "some of my best friends, etc, etc" I was referring to that old criticism TSS was pointing out in his post.

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I certainly do not propose to speak for all Americans. I have had some great travels with Americans and to some of the darker corners of the planet. (I hope that doesn't come off sounding like the old "some of my best friends, etc, etc" I was referring to that old criticism TSS was pointing out in his post.

Americans travel just fine...they even went to the Moon to "learn something".

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  • 4 weeks later...

Yes.....fun fact: Alaska has the longest border with Canada of any state...over 1500 miles..errr...2400 kilometers.

There are only two land crossings in the entire 2400 kms, and one of them is only open for a few months in summer. The year round portal is on the Alaska Highway between Whitehorse Yukon and Tok Alaska. The seasonal crossing is on the Top of The World Highway between Dawson City YT and Chicken, AK. For the culturally unaware, Chicken AK (population 7, booming to 17 in summer) is home to the world famous music festival called ChickenStock.

For perspective on how long the border is between YT and AK, 2400 kms is roughly equivalent to the distance between Calagry and Toronto..

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There are only two land crossings in the entire 2400 kms, and one of them is only open for a few months in summer. The year round portal is on the Alaska Highway between Whitehorse Yukon and Tok Alaska. The seasonal crossing is on the Top of The World Highway between Dawson City YT and Chicken, AK. For the culturally unaware, Chicken AK (population 7, booming to 17 in summer) is home to the world famous music festival called ChickenStock.

For perspective on how long the border is between YT and AK, 2400 kms is roughly equivalent to the distance between Calagry and Toronto..

And how long is the BC leg? Are there any crossings from Ketchikan, AK southward into BC?

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And how long is the BC leg? Are there any crossings from Ketchikan, AK southward into BC?

I don't know how long the BC leg is bordering AK, but doubt it is as long as AK/YT .

I know of two land crossing between BC and AK.

One is at Fraser BC, which is just a place, not a town of any sort and well north of Ketchikan. The crsossing is bewteen Haines Junction YT and Haines, AK- a gorgeous drive alongside Kluane National Park and through some marvellous country in the Chilkat Pass, then a descent to Fraser and saltwater at Haines.

There is one land crossing south of Ketchikan, and it quaifies as a border oddity.

It is between Stewart BC (north of Prince Rupert) and teeny Hyder AK(population 87). The oddity is that there is no US border control in Hyder. In the summer there is a single agent on the Canadian side, purpose unknown. The road ends a few km past Hyder on the stunning sides of Salmon Glacier, just past a park where you can watch bears eat salmon. No entry control going into US, summer only control on the CDN side, thought the road is open year round and the two communities basically touch each other. A tradition in Hyder for vistors is to get Hyderized at one of the bars, which involves slamming back a shot of ethanol.

Aside from that, the area around Stewart and Hyder is gorgeous, many glaciers and mountains. You can continue north to Yukon on the Stewart Cassiar Highway(Hwy 37), itself an epic drive through some beautiful country that few people ever see. The road is excellent, paved all the way.

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The oddity is that there is no US border control in Hyder. In the summer there is a single agent on the Canadian side, purpose unknown. The road ends a few km past Hyder on the stunning sides of Salmon Glacier, just past a park where you can watch bears eat salmon. No entry control going into US, summer only control on the CDN side, thought the road is open year round and the two communities basically touch each other.

I suppose having controls is not worth it since you really can't get into much of the U.S. that way.

But personally I think there should be little or no border control, but joint enforcement at air and sea entry points to the two countries.

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I've crossed at Hyder before. It was a little unnerving.

We have several "honour system" crossings in Southern Manitoba where they have limited hours and if it's closed there's no gate, just no one there to see you through. But with those the deal is you're still not supposed to go through if it's not manned -- they just trust you to turn around and go to another crossing.

When I was told, "no just go, it's good" at the Hyder crossing, I was sure I was being messed with. I fully expected people with guns to come out of the trees at any second.

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