Trial Run- BC,Yukon,NWT and Alberta
This isn’t really a ride report, It’s a trial run ride report.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>
In preparation for riding my Buell to South America this fall, I have followed the advice of a number of people and am taking a trial run for 10 days to see how my choice of bike, gear , packing system etc works out. Since I am hoping to write a live road report while in SA, I am following , again, the advice of a great number of people and am attempting to write a live RR.<o:p></o:p>
My trip to South America is, hopefully going to follow no set plan. Head South until its time to turn around and head North. Unfortunately, this weeks trip has a deadline as I have to be back to work for July 10<SUP>th</SUP>, so a bit more planning had to be done . The plan/route is to leave after work Thursday, ride from my home in Williams Lake BC to Quesnel,then up the Blackwater road and camp somewhere along the way. Then ride to Prince George, up the Stewart-Cassiar highway to Watson Lake, down through Muncho Lake to Fort Nelson, then up the Liard Highway to Fort Simpson, on to Hay river to visit my brother, then head home through Alberta to Jasper and home to Williams Lake. We will see how it goes J<o:p></o:p>
Day one June 30th 213 kms Williams Lake to Punchaw Lake
I left Williams Lake in the rain. It had been raining on and off all day, and when I left, the rain was on. I stopped briefly at New Life Cycle, a bike shop in Williams Lake, to drop off a book Dave, the owner, had lent me ( 1 man caravan. If you haven’t read it, I recommend it. The 1<SUP>st</SUP> documented RTW on a motorcycle) Dave is a great guy with a great shop and bent over backwards to get me the parts I needed before I had to leave on this trip ( just a little plug)<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>
Stopped for gas, and then on my way to Quesnel<o:p></o:p>
Stopped for a p*ss break at the old steam shovel in the park<o:p></o:p>
On the Bridge over the Blackwater river<o:p></o:p>
Oh yeah, my kind of road
Went as far as Punchaw Lake and camped at a (free) gov campsite (pics didn’t turn out)<o:p></o:p>
Tent, sleeping bag and cot worked out good. Penny stove, not so much. I have to buy methyl hydrate tomorrow. Isopropyl isn’t doing the trick for me. Luckily I had a nice fire going.<o:p></o:p>
Nice pics! I like the luggage setup - looks like it gives you some room to move back and forth on the seat...
More to come once I get the tenr set up
I am at Meziadin prov campsite where the internet is slow but it is expensive!
I would be very interested in knowing the fuel situation between Ft.Liard and Hay River....sounds like a fun ride.
In Watson Lake at the air force hotel, where they gurantee the internet is fast. We'll see.
updates once photos have loaded
Looks like you're making good time! How's the packing/equipment working out?
There is stuff I haven't used yet, but I am only a few days into it, so I will know more by the end of next week.
But, overall, equipment and packing is going well
Update soon. Slloooooow loading pictures. I will see how they loaded after I go for supper
Day 2 July 1 698kms Punchaw Lake to Meziadin Lake
Left Punchaw early and rode to Prince George for gas and headed west for Fort Fraser. While I am away next year, my wife is moving back to her home town. I stopped to check on the work done to the septic system on our new house on the way through.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>
I carried on to Burns Lake where I was planning to stop and find an internet connection I stopped at the tourist info booth for wifi, but it was closed. But….. there was free internet and a table to sit at, and the rain had slowed by that time<o:p></o:p>
My office for a while<o:p></o:p>
While sitting in my new office, a couple of young ladies drove up and asked if they could help me. I told them no, I am OK. They said “ no, really, can we help you?” so I am thinking, What, I shouldn’t be here.<o:p></o:p>
They then told me they worked at the info booth, and they wanted to help me. They then told me there was a Canada Day celebration in the park and invited me. <o:p></o:p>
After I was done online, I headed down to check it out. I got there Just at the end of the parade and the beginning of the festivities<o:p></o:p>
Lots of people hanging out<o:p></o:p>
Vendors selling their wares<o:p></o:p>
Interesting head gear<o:p></o:p>
Nothing says Canada like a traditional Canada day goat<o:p></o:p>
More interesting head gear<o:p></o:p>
Headed off in the rain for Smithers, where I stopped for a bite to eat at McDs, then carried on.<o:p></o:p>
At the next gas stop(kitwanga) met a couple from Oz on a KLR and a DR650 heading to Argentina. Chatted a bit then carried on to Meziadin, where I set up camp in the Provincial campsite.<o:p></o:p>
Met a couple from Germany who were riding their bicycles from Anchorage to Patagonia, and a well travelled Dutch lady from South Africa<o:p></o:p>
My brother lives in Hay River and drives that road regularly. Here is a cut and past of e-mails he sent regarding fuel on the route
> Hi Bro.
> Here's some distances in the NWT.
> Hay River to Enterprise = 39 km.
> Enterprise to Ft Providence junction = 101 km Fuel is 40 in to
> Ft Prov.
> Ft Prov junction to Ft Liard Highway junction = 225 km No fuel
> at this junction. Its 67 km and a ferry ride to fuel in Ft
> Simpson. Ferry runs 8:30 until 11:30.
> Liard junction to Ft Liard = 217 km. Its 10 km into Ft Liard for fuel.
> Ft Liard to a place called Camp 99 = 75 km There is fuel there
> 24/7 on a visa card.
> Camp 99 to the Alaska Highway = 99 km
> Liard highway to Ft Nelson 27 km
> Hope this helps
This is a bit confusing for me, cause I will probably be going from Fort Nelson to Hay river, not the other way.
So lets see if I have this right.
If I was to get fuel in Ft Nelson and go to Camp 99 27+99=126km
Camp 99 to Ft Liard 75+10=85km
Ft Liard to Ft Simpson 10+217+67=294km
Ft Simpson to Ft Providence 67+225+40=332km
Ft Providence to Hay River 40+101+39=180 km
I enjoyed the picture of the band, the hands in the pocket, too cool for school look made me laugh :D
Won't sourcing parts for a Buel be a bit of a pain in SA ?
Enjoy your ride
Day 3 July 2 615 kms Meziadin to Watson Lake
Woke up this morning and it was raining. It had rained all night, but inside my Big Agnes tent I was nice and dry. Got up early, packed all my gear….in the rain and the bike wouldn’t start. I kind of figured that was going to happen, as when I got to the campsite the night before, the battery was almost dead, and I had to bump start it. I had run the heated grip quite a bit the day before, and figured that was probably the reason. Pushed my bike up the hill and tried to bump start it again, but a combination of cold engine, and wet, real smooth pavement, the back tire just skidded.<?xml:namespace prefix = o ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:office" /><o:p></o:p>
Hmmmm. So I sat, in the rain, and waited for people to get up so I could ask someone for a jump start. The first couple early risers had either no jumper cables, or didn’t speak enough English to know what jumper cables were ( I looked it up and Jumper cable sounds almost the same in German, so maybe it was just me)<o:p></o:p>
Finally, a young fella was walking up the road and I asked him, he said sure, so I pushed my bike back down the hill to his truck and he got out his cables, and the Buell fired right up. He was fairly local, so I asked him if he thought I would be able to buy jumper cables at Bell 2 ( next town) and he wasn’t sure. So then he offers me the cables he had. Said he had a better set at home. I thanked him profusely, but the cables in my panniers, and away I went. If anyone knows a young fellow Named Randy from Terrace who drives a silver chevy pickup, tell him BC Brian says thanks again. Gotta like random acts of kindness.<o:p></o:p>
So, away I go in the rain with a new to me set of cables . I get to Bell 2 for gas, and……. Bike won’t start. Crap. I dig out Randy’s cables and ask a lady if she ould mind giving me a boost after she fills up with gas. While I am waiting, I recheck my battery connection, and they are a little loose. I tighten them and the bike fires right up. Problem solved<o:p></o:p>
At Bell 2<o:p></o:p>
So away I go, in the rain. It was pretty cold and miserable out, and I didn’t dare use my hand warmers, so I just rode, and rode, and rode, in the rain. I stopped a couple times to stretch, always near a hill, just in case. Bike started good every time. Got to Dease lake for fuel and lunch, and couldn’t find a restaurant. Started and stopped the bike a number of times while trying to find lunch. No problems. Found a deli in the super market and had a real good, real greasy, full of saturated fat hot wings, fries and a corn dog ( I could feel the ateries hardening. Left Dease Lake with a full tank and a full belly, but the bike hesitated a bit beforeit started. Hmmmm…… must be because I started and started so many times in the lasr while...................
Rode for a couple of hours, and needed to stop for a break, so I pulled over for a stretch<o:p></o:p>
Walked around, had a drink, got back on the bike and…….wouldn’t start. Crap. Unload the bike, clean the connections real good, retighten....nope. Get out the cables and stand on the side of the road holding up the cables to every vehicle that drives by (not a lot, I might add)<o:p></o:p>
After a few vehicles drive by, an older motorhome with Alaska plates stops and we hook up my new cables. Bike fires right up and away I go. <o:p></o:p>
Now I am getting concerned. I stop for another break and to add fuel, on a hill and the bike fires up like there was never a problem<o:p></o:p>
Finally I get to the Yukon border<o:p></o:p>
Left the bike running for this shot<o:p></o:p>
And Arrive at the Air Force Hotel<o:p></o:p>
Get all signed in, go to move my bike, and…… you guessed it, Won’t start.<o:p></o:p>
The hotel owner couldn’t find his battery charger, so the Buell is hooked up to his pickup over night, and hopefully will have enough of a charge to keep me going for a bit tomorrow. <o:p></o:p>
Oh yeah, It stopped raining for the last couple hundred kms, and the sun even came out for a while<o:p></o:p>
Sorry to hear about your charging troubles. I had a similar incident last summer traveling to Mexico and my bike wouldn't charge the battery. Could it be the charging system? Regulator/rectifier? That's what the issue was with my bike. You'll know after a while as even with a push start or jumper cables it won't run (battery will be completely dead).
Best of luck. Fingers crossed for you until you can make it to a shop or repair facility to test things out.
Check that your ground strap to frame connection is good and clean, as in take it loose, scrape any paint away and smear a little grease on it and the cable end. Do the same thing with the starter connections. If your battery is good, then it has to be something fairly simple given that its either dead or fires right up.
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