Crossing up into Canada is always a bit of a thrill for me for a number of reasons but chief amongst them is just my general love for Canadians!
Their fantastic self-effacing sense of humour is very similar to us New Zealanders.
After crossing the border into Central Kootenay I rode 3A which is a really, really lovely road that twists itself around the edge of Kootenay lake. After a short ferry ride across the water I continued north on Rt 31 until I hit one of the coolest places to camp in BC: the Toad Rock Motorcycle Campground. If sleeping in the short bus or a psychedelic VW camper is on your bucket list then this is the place to stop for the night. They love bikes so much they'll even give you a discount if you roll in on something older than 30 years.
I was shown around the campsite by this delightfully mellow, grey haired guy who looked like he'd probably utilized the letters L, S and D a few times in his life — He pointed over to the toilet block and said "… and that's the shitter over there… It's used by men and women because… you know… we're all the same anyway man"
The second he uttered that hilarious line I knew I wanted to support them by staying.
I continued on up 31 for probably the most satisfying days ride I've had on this trip so far—I rode for ages without seeing a single human being, cell phone signal or sealed road. Scared off two bears, dodged a deer and rode slowly behind a pair of moose who trotted along the road for 500 yards before veering into the woods— It appears Canada was starting to share some of her wildlife with me.
The next day I spent some time with (a different)) Heather and her dog Cody. Heather has spent the last 8 years helping her father work on his (slightly crazy) dream of building an entire american wild west town in the middle of nowhere, British Columbia. It completely looks and reads like a plot from a herzog film and i couldn't help but admire her for sticking to it like she has.
Started cutting across the Bulkley-Nechako district on the yellow head highway (Rt16) into Fraser lake,
home to Canada's most majestic, anatomically correct Moose statue.
I then hopped onto the Stewart-Cassiar Hwy (Rt 37) and headed east on the Glacier Hwy toward my first goal...
so.. um.. it's my first time, so please be gentle.
Most riders that've crossed into Hyder, AK at this point will admit that this is the "fake alaska" as it constitutes a very southern tip of a state that's twice the size of Texas— I still had a metric shit load more riding to do before I could honestly claim victory.
But now that i'd actually made it to the state I was definitely excited at the prospect of exploring the vastness of Alaska, Yukon and the Northern territories —However little did I know I was just 16 miles from one of the most amazing things I'd experience on this trip….