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Old 07-22-2007, 09:41 PM   #1
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Wink A woman's 7 State 2 Province Solo Journey.

I love motorcycle adventures. I love the anticipation of preparation and the subsequent glow upon returning home after a successful journey. I love the human interaction encountered while traveling and I love the freedom, most of all. The freedom to take a deep breath of daring, exposing the underbelly of desire found sleeping within, then setting it free with a grin.

Grinning, I mounted my trusty moto-steed and headed north solo; embarking on a 15-day adventure to visit country I had yet to experience. My GPS presented a healthy dose of craziness traveling over 7 states and 2 Canadian providences and nearly 3100 miles, a less than daunting sum for the serious Iron Butt explorer. However, not being part of the IBA, I was feeling like this was substantial mileage, that and the fact, I needed to walk before I could run.







Double checking my bags, to make sure all zippers were zipped and all was properly attached, I gave a passionate kiss to my husband and rode east to Winnemucca, NV, the first gas stop before turning north to no-woman’s-land. The road was a glorious surface, abeit boring. The long straight sections made speed easily accessible and cautionary resolve indifferent. Looking ahead, I thought of the early explorers contemplating the end of the earth and dropping off into the unknown. The unknown was miles ahead and when I arrived it was reset to begin yet again, becoming my mileage purgatory.
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demenshea screwed with this post 09-23-2007 at 11:14 AM Reason: changed title for entire post
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Old 07-22-2007, 09:42 PM   #2
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Occasionally a lush valley would emerge from the unknown benevolently contributing shades of green to the otherwise brown and amber countryside.


A few towns rose in the distance complete with dusty whirlwinds and curious onlookers. Summer fires burned in the hills creating a surreal smoky horizon of endless proportion, leaving the GPS as sole navigator.

Gas must have been plentiful with the combination of coffee and chorizo


.







Nevada became Oregon became Idaho and became Oregon again, giving me the town of Ontario as my first overnight stop and a place to take a needed swim. The motel was filled with firefighters as the desert burned with a record 85 fires surrounding Ontario in both Oregon and Idaho. They looked as tired as I felt.

A good night of sleep left me energized and ready to ride early. I left Ontario at 6:30 am to a chilly but refreshing Highway 30. Today I would enter some higher desert and a road less traveled using Hwy 82 to Hwy 3 through the Wallowa Whitman National Forest. I might actually encounter a twisty road or two!
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Old 07-22-2007, 09:42 PM   #3
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Highway 30 rose to some beautiful mountain passes presenting high desert in full regalia.









After changing to Hwy 82, the roadside became more quaint and scenic. Small towns spilled into the horizon and the town of Elgin displayed some local humor.



Riding closer to Wallowa, the sky once again filled with smoke from a large wildfire, although it didn’t faze the local herd.







Wallowa was Nez Perce country spreading from Oregon to Washington to Idaho. I passed several tribe members as they made their way to a large regional pow-wow. When I was stopped taking some pictures, I met Wally, a local Nez Perce tribesman, who provided me will a camel-bak refill, ice and some great tales. Thanks, Wally!
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Old 07-22-2007, 09:43 PM   #4
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A few more miles up brought me to the summit and a motorcycle dream road through Hell’s Canyon that follows the Snake River. WOW…. similar to CA’s Little Dragon”, only this was miles long. And oh what a marvelous ride! What was truly amazing was that I passed only a small handful of other travelers.









The road wound to an end in Asotin right along the border of Washington and Idaho. Crossing the river Washington became Idaho and a few miles ahead was Lewiston. From Lewiston back into Washington then all the way to Spokane the roadside provided miles and miles of farmland and the “amber waves of grain”. There grows wheat, lentils and garbanzo beans bleeding different shades of yellow to amber to green over rolling hillsides.

I rolled into a cloudy Spokane, arriving safely at my brother’s house after nearly 10 hours of a scenic yet surreal landscape.
















I spent two lovely days visiting my family and will leave early tomorrow morning for Nelson, British Columbia.
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demenshea screwed with this post 11-12-2007 at 06:56 PM
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Old 07-23-2007, 02:34 AM   #5
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Great pictures!!!


Hey! Weren't you on Triumphrat.net before this?!

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Old 07-23-2007, 03:46 AM   #6
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Nice write up! Yeah the Hell's canyon area is a great place to ride isn't it? With the high temps in the area you're on the right track too to be heading up north to BC. Have fun!!!
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Old 07-23-2007, 06:05 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SR1
Great pictures!!!


Hey! Weren't you on Triumphrat.net before this?!
That would be me....with my 03 sprint!! Sadly we parted company after its oil consumption got a bit out of hand!! Geeze even Triumph couldn't solve the mystery.
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Old 07-23-2007, 08:19 AM   #8
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Yes, I recall that quite well. We were sorry to lose you, but understood the situation. I'm glad you're having fun riding again!
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Old 07-23-2007, 08:23 AM   #9
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Nice pics, your intro was well written! Is that a Bandit 1200? Great bike.....!
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Old 07-23-2007, 01:12 PM   #10
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great riding and pics!! Thanks for the report..

when you're ready for part 2, just add it to this thread, so we can keep it all together.

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Old 07-25-2007, 09:21 AM   #11
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Part 2

Morning saw a leisurely start and I had a difficult time getting in the swing of moving. Coffee helped but veging on the big ol’ front porch in the quiet Spokane neighborhood was becoming familiar, however I knew it was time to move north.

I packed the bike and found the toughest negotiation of my trip was getting my bandito out of the garage, turned around on my bro’s horrible drive and down to the street. Hell, I was worn out before I began!!

Once on the road, even in the commuter traffic, I felt the cool air through my mesh gear and my body eased into riding rhythm. I was ready for the next chapter of my adventure.









The ride to Canada from Spokane was over Hwy 2 to Hwy 31 and some beautiful lush country abeit many curves. There was a sense, as I approached Canada of foreignness to the area.. The people began to gain a bit of an accent that was different to my ear. Everyone was very friendly, that was until I got to the border at Nelway.

Ah the border. I don’t know exactly what I answered that was incorrectly stated but I became this day’s “random” search. I was stuck at the border for nearly 1.5 hours as they completely tore down my luggage and searched every bloody piece. I have to say, he did this task with a smile. He even brought out a female border guard and she went through my minimal makeup kit, my prescription meds and my underwear. It was pretty thorough. The near disastrous result of this search was when they discovered that I had an undeclared corkscrew, which I had purchased from the local thrift store. It had a blade for cutting foil on a wine bottle, which they immediately tested and proclaimed that they had found residue of marijuana on the blade. Hahahahahahahah….i could barely keep a straight face as I had absolutely no idea how it got on my corkscrew although I didn’t know the “history” of the corkscrew…I only knew I hadn’t used it for any drug related activity. They told me they could call the Canadian Mounted Police (u mean like Dudley DoRight?) however they were going to let me go with a warning. Phew…..

I got the hell outa there as quickly as possible.
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Old 07-25-2007, 09:22 AM   #12
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Once down the road and just before dropping into the town of Castlegar, I stopped to get off the bike and shake off the negative experience of the border, I was fine afterwards.



I arrived in Nelson around 3PM and called my friend Geoff. He is someone I met on mcUSA moro-forum, however we had never met in person. The beauty of this community is that he invited me to stay with him and his wife for the days I was to be in Nelson. What a great invitation! He met me in Nelson and had planned a small ride up in the hills which was a blasst! Afterwards, we rode to his home, about 20 miles from Nelson to await his wife who chairs the Kootaney School of Art. As we got to the top of the drive were greeted by a 12 point bull elk. WOW!!!













After a wonderful dinner a dog walk and some spirited conversation, they set me up in the guest room.









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Old 07-25-2007, 09:24 AM   #13
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Where Geoff and Laura live is a huge Doukhbor Community. I found information regarding this group here
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dukhobor I found this area to be full of history. The following building is a Dukhobor building.



In the morning we began with a 1978 Spitfire and a trip into Nelson for some shopping and touring. We took the car only because it was quite hot and we had to do grocery shopping. The Spitfire was nearly as fun as the bikes.!!









In the town of Nelson, the city decided they no longer wanted people walking dogs and messing up the pristine streets. Well a guerilla art force decided to have some fun and spray paint all sorts of animals at the corner signs, including deer, elk, cows, pigs, and boar. The city fathers did NOT enjoy the humor!



Tomorrow Geoff is going to take me touring in the northern Kootaneys then we will part company and I will head to Ainsworth Hot Springs for my final Selkirk night, then on to Alberta.
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Old 08-05-2007, 03:15 PM   #14
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Today a nail seems to have found a new home in my rear tire. I luckily didn’t notice it until parking the bike at Ainswowrth Motel after a wonderful day of riding the Kootenays. In what could have easily been a 2 hour ride, instead became a 6 hour ride as I trailed Geoff traversing the scenic byways.



Geoff’s beautiful Buell Lightening














The roads throughout that area are nicely surfaced and had a bit of wonderful twisties, enough to tease one into the continuous search for more. The nail culprit must have hitched a ride on the gravel road to Slocan, a deserted silver mining town and lucky for me, didn’t present any problem, only make me aware that I would need to replace my rear tire before moving on to Alberta.







Slocan






Heading over toward Ainsworth on the 31 and 31a











Upon arriving at Ainsworth Motel, I encountered another pair of hearty travelers, both Canadian and brothers. They get together yearly to celebrate family with a long ride around both Canada and the USA. Bob was from the Yukon and Lawrence was from north of Vancouver. We commiserated tire woes and they took pity on me and decided to follow me back to Nelson for a tire the next morning. However, the evening was filled with gabbing and food and drink as well as an amazing dip in the Ainsworth Hot Springs.
http://www.britishcolumbia.com/hotsprings/?id=11

The bright and sunny morning brought another surprise. Bob had a flat and a nail!! We aired up the bikes and carefully headed the 1.5 hr. ride back to Nelson arriving at Kootenay Sleds and Wheels, a local dealer who could provide both a Harley and a Suzuki tire!

Kudos to this dealership, for getting me right in and back on the road to catch the Kootenay Lake ferry, as quickly as they did! Tis this sort of special treatment that makes one realize the camaraderie of our sport, also a special thanks to Bob and Lawrence for an enjoyable evening and needed rider support.

My new friends Lawrence and Bob in front of the Ainsworth Motel






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Old 08-05-2007, 03:16 PM   #15
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Leaving Nelson once again, I was hoping to catch an afternoon ferry and had little problem. There was a formidable queue, but they found room for one lone motorbike and I was on my way to Alberta.

Ferry across Kootenay Lake










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