My wife and I celebrated our 4th anniversary yesterday, and today we packed up and headed out on the first of hopefully many two-wheeled road trips together.
Our recreational activities have always been outside and active, but nearly 3 years ago, my wife Brandi suffered a fractured T6 as a result of a car accident. Our outdoor activities like mountain biking and skiing/snowboarding have fallen by the wayside in the wake of her injuries.
We had purchased a 2002 DR650 about a year and a half prior to her accident, and it had primarily served as a trail bike. I insured the bike for commuter duty when she required daily use of our sole vehicle for her physiotherapy appointments.
I had ridden for years, but decided to take a refresher training course (seeing as I knew the owner of the school). I enjoyed the course a lot, and found myself helping some of my fellow students when the instructors were occasionally busy with other riders. Some time after the course, I was asked if I'd like to help out as an assistant instructor. That was 3 years ago.
Last summer, Brandi took the rider's training course and just recently acquired her full Class 6 BC rider's license! Yay!!!
So... enough background info, on to the trip!
I have one remaining grandparent - my dad's mother - who lives in a small town in Saskatchewan. Given her age, we try to get out and see her as often as possible. Now that Brandi has her full license, we decided to do the trip on bikes this year. Partly for the economics - much cheaper to ride than to drive our diesel-thirsty SUV - and partly for the 'adventure' aspect.
We plan to visit as many family members as possible along the route as well. Lots of riding and lots of visiting in a tight timeframe. 10 days, 3700 km. I started a 'ride prep' thread of sort in the Canadian section of the regional forums. The link for that thread is here.
Skipping ahead to today... I had intended for us to be on the road by noon. Getting shipped out of town for work for a week kinda sobtaged those good intentions, tho. It pushed back a bit of my maintenance and prep so much so that I was doing oil changes this morning before we left - while Brandi was sleeping in, I might add!
It was a little hectic trying to get everything in order, so I didn't take many pics. Hopefully I'll make up for that slow start in the days to follow. Here are the few shots I got today.
Finally... prep work all done and bike is loaded up and ready to go:
The weather sucked as we left town, so there were no departure photos. We found a bit of a dry spot east of Prince George at the Purden Lake Resort. We stopped in for a refreshment break and some snacks. If you happen stop in there, make sure to grab some of the homemade peanut butter cookies...OMG! Awesome! One bite will put a silly grin like this on your face:
Not long after that break, we caught up with the heavy part of the rain we'd been chasing east out of town and pulled over to don the rain gear:
Underway again, ready for anything. Well... anything wet, anyway:
Its been pretty hot and dry in the central interior of BC lately, and recent thunderstorms have sparked quite a few wildfires. The last count I saw on the BC Wildfire site was +600 active fires. You can see evidence of their numbers in the hazy vistas:
The stretch between PG and McBride is about as entertaining as chess match reruns. I got bored... started randomly snapping shots:
And an over-the-shoulder shot of Brandi following behind me:
Next rest/stretch break was Tete Jaune Cache. Mainly it was an exercise in bug scraping and visor cleaning. Also, it appears that the sugar in those peanut butter cookies has kicked in. Someone looks giddy!
And she of course insisted of getting a shot of me after I was mocking her for being on a sugar-high already this early in the trip:
That's the last of the pics for today, it got dark shortly thereafter. We rolled into Jasper as it got dark, filled up and followed a small string of cars using their headlights to see farther ahead and stayed with the leaders of that group until we arrived in Hinton for the night.
Tomorrow, Hinton to Edmonton - a short ride day for sure, but we'll be staying with family there, so it'll leave more time for visiting.
More to come tomorrow