We definitely need to factor in a trip to do some glacier driving..
Jack,[...SNIP]As others have mentioned, prepare for some serious windshield time, the distances are great.
Having said that, don't think I am a downer or that I am trying to say it won't be fun, just as someone else pointed out AK seems to be geared toward flying/boat/winter travel vs. road/vehicle travel.
Still thinking about doing this though...
First let me say the perception that alaska is a couple of highways without many good secondary/forest service orv roads is pretty on the mark.
However I think there are some pretty great trails to be done. There are many offshoot trails on the Denali highway. They don't go anywhere, if by that you mean a town or something they do head up to old mines, lakes, fish or hunting camps and get you into some incredible country. There are a couple off the Richardson I really want to see. I'd love to do the Demster too, find a local and I am sure there are trails that lead off from there. I am good for a few ideas and I know Rover guys on here have a few up their sleeve. Get a couple of Fairbanks guys to throw in their knowledge and you will have plenty of offroad should you choose.
Most of these are anywhere from 5-20 miles long. 5 doesn't sound like much but when you leave pavement from the middle of nowhere it doesnt take long to really be in the middle of nowhere. The trails are somewhat random and scattered about. They are generally not marked and if you don't know where to start you would miss them. I imagine that with the number of locals here we could come up with a list of day/overnight trip offroad excursions that people could hit along the way to the bigger destinations. Here is the rub. Most people up here won't share the locations over the Internet (we have our land use issues too, and overuse of unimproved trails is one of them). I don't always agree but I can see why too. However sharing via email PM or in person it's not an issue.
Long story short I really think you could plan a route that would include several of these side trip trails for the 4x4 contingent. People could run the highway and up a trail and camp in the mountains and run back to pavement for the next leg.
I live in Whitehorse, have been on the Dempster numerous times and hunt up there every year.I'd love to do the Demster too, find a local and I am sure there are trails that lead off from there. I am good for a few ideas and I know Rover guys on here have a few up their sleeve.