I rode one more day to get from Yukon Territory to Fairbanks. I had a class to get to and was hoping like hell nothing on my bike would break before I got there. I kept the speed down and entered Alaska with an exciting whump sound coming from my chain. The border guards there seemed a bit more laid back then in Canada, but maybe it was because I wasn't a foreigner this time?
There was a 20km dirt section and some windy roads right before crossing over onto asphalt. The only strange thing I noticed was a lot less wildlife once I entered AK, but it might have also been the earlier time of day. I made it to Fairbanks intact and took up residence at the Glacier House Hostel. I opted to setup at tent instead of spend $10 more a night on a bed. If I have showers, laundry and wifi who needs the bed?
I took my Wilderness First Responder recertification over the next three days at University of Alaska, Fairbanks. My instructors were great and the class had a special dose of AK flavor for the scenarios. I also used the evenings to get some work done on the bike and get my drivetrain in working order. I found a new K60 rear tire in town at The Outpost, and my sprocket from Anchorage was found lurking in the back of "the other" Fairbanks post office. I also ordered up new front and rear EBC pads to the post office in Anchorage for a lot less than the cost of one BMW brand set. Maybe one day I'll stop being offended by how much BMW parts cost, but not anytime soon.
The end of the Canada section of the AL-CAN.
Getting some work done in the backyard of Glacier House.
This pup is cool. You should check him out.
Three days of reviewing all the ways you can kill yourself in the backcountry. Certified for another 3 years!
I bought a new spare tube at The Outpost and had a chat with Justin there about the Dalton Highway. He gave me a great mileage printout with all the important stops along with some advice. He hadn't heard of anyone going up on a bike yet, which probably should have been more of a red flag than I thought it was at the time. No matter what happened I told him I'd give him a full report once I made back to Fairbanks. Maybe I've seen too many California summers where even the mountains are warm and inviting by May to think it could still be too cold North of the Arctic circle, but either way I figured I was good to go and I'd turn back if I had to.
Trial and error right?