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Old 10-05-2010, 11:01 AM   #106
dhillr
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Ahh...... This motivates me to take a nice, long trip.

Now all I need is time off and money!

Loving the story JD!
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Old 10-05-2010, 03:02 PM   #107
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Originally Posted by markbvt
Ah yes, I remember her. She told us you were a little ahead, and we asked about the camping area you'd told us about. There was quite a bit of back and forth between her and the construction guys, and eventually they all agreed that the campground was about 100km away on a side road whose name I've forgotten. We didn't end up going that far, instead camping off the side of the road in a clearing that I was familiar with from my trip last year.

--mark
that girl was a character, and couldn't string more than a few words of English together without the F bomb.

i didn't see that camping spot either, and went on to CF where i made my grand entrance at City Center.

we need to see a photo of you riding the wee strom with a cast on your arm.
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Old 10-05-2010, 03:07 PM   #108
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Originally Posted by RRVT
I go to Quebec all the time. In my experience, if a French girl likes you, you don't need no French
yeah sure Roman, you have that international man of mystery savoir-faire, the rest of us dummies would never get to first base.
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Old 10-05-2010, 03:40 PM   #109
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Originally Posted by L.B.S.
JD- thoroughly enjoyed this RR, bless your heart for making dull work days go by much faster ...
gee, it's only tuesday, you're supposed to save the heavy duty ride report reading until the "WTF" work days.

thanks for sharing your experience on the Hill. i was in Bella Coola last spring, here's a snippet from that ride report...

If anyone mentioned it, I must have missed the warning about open range cattle on this road. Sure, I saw the occasion road sign, but hadn’t seen any strays. Up a slight grade and around a blind corner, here’s two cowboys and a cowgirl moving a small herd of cattle right in the middle of the road. I grab all the brakes I have and stop fifty feet from the nearest animal. If I had been a big log truck coming around that corner, the riders and the cattle would have been killed…all of them. Freakin’ A.

The riders looked annoyed, but I was pissed, and moved over to the shoulder to get off the road. I just wanted to get out of the way in case someone came up behind me, but they must have thought I was going to ride around their cattle. The cattle are milling around in the road and when the girl takes charge, they push the cattle off the road to the left side. There’s just something about these girls in the tight western cut jeans with the big belt, hat and boots, she had…ok, ok, what I wanted to say was it looked like a real nice horse.

The road changes from chip to gravel long before the pass, a little misinformation from someone who hasn’t been out here lately. I should have looked at a map. I wouldn’t have minded much if the sleet and snow hadn’t caught me at the same time, but what the heck, I’d seen this stuff before. Running a wet washboarded road, I start a gradual climb towards HeckmanPass
aka “the Hill”, and this is where the fun starts for real.

There’s a little snow sticking on the grass and some crusty ice on the road at the top of the Pass.




I start down the west side and find big problems right off the bat. A road crew was working the Hill and long sections had just been graded and watered down…even though the road was wet already.



I had been warned about this steep road, and man, they weren’t kidding around when they used that word. Unless you cranked your neck back, your line of slight was looking right at this muddy road about ten feet in front of the fender. The road looked about as steep as one of those Olympic ski jumps.

Did I mention that the road was slippery? I remembered those words “Ya ken slide, eh”, and that’s what I was doing…all over the road, both wheels. I was idling in first gear, compression braking as I coasted down, but even this was too fast. Hairpin curves in the switchbacks and I would have my foot on the rear brake just a feather, enough to slow down a little more and make the corner. The temperature had to be about freezing at 5000’ near the top, but I was about soaked through with sweat, and just hangin’ on.

I wanted to stop in the worst way, but it wasn’t until I was down past the road crew and out of the wet weather that I found a dry spot where the road was wide enough and level enough to pull over. My fingers were molded in the shape of the grips, that descent had scared the heck out of me. There are places on this road where it’s one lane, no shoulder, no guard rails. Get off the road and it’s a long way down. The road is being watered down here also, but for dust control as much as anything, and the surface hadn’t been graded, fine with me.




i had switched from TKCs back to Tourancesin watson lake and was missing those tires. Bella Coola and that whole valley is a great place to visit. i wasn't aware of the flooding problems.


full report from that trip here-

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showt...ht=canuckistan
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Old 10-05-2010, 06:03 PM   #110
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dhillr
Ahh...... This motivates me to take a nice, long trip.
might take the XC out west next season for a back country mountain ride. that's KLR country too! something to think about.
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Old 10-05-2010, 07:58 PM   #111
RRVT
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Originally Posted by jdrocks
yeah sure Roman, you have that international man of mystery savoir-faire, the rest of us dummies would never get to first base.
I am not so sure, not having much luck recently. My riding date last month didn't show up because the night before she overdosed on some "feel better" pills and had her stomach pumped. My last date fell asleep lying on top of my motorcycle while waiting for her ride home. I only had one helmet and the martinis we were drinking were too strong even for me. Gotta love biker chicks...

I love this RR. Can't wait to see how you'll descibe what we called the "Princess of Labrador".
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Old 10-05-2010, 08:22 PM   #112
sailer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RRVT
I am not so sure, not having much luck recently. My riding date last month didn't show up because the night before she overdosed on some "feel better" pills and had her stomach pumped. My last date fell asleep lying on top of my motorcycle while waiting for her ride home. I only had one helmet and the martinis we were drinking were too strong even for me. Gotta love biker chicks...

I love this RR. Can't wait to see how you'll descibe what we called the "Princess of Labrador".
if it doesn't work out with you and the one from last month could give me her number. lol
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Old 10-06-2010, 03:28 AM   #113
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Gotta love biker chicks...
now we're going to need some photos before we decide exactly what all that savoir-faire is getting you up in Montreal.
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Old 10-06-2010, 07:12 AM   #114
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snow and big rigs just keeps getting better....... eh
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Old 10-06-2010, 08:16 AM   #115
L.B.S.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdrocks
gee, it's only tuesday, you're supposed to save the heavy duty ride report reading until the "WTF" work days.



i had switched from TKCs back to Tourancesin watson lake and was missing those tires. Bella Coola and that whole valley is a great place to visit. i wasn't aware of the flooding problems.


full report from that trip here-

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showt...ht=canuckistan

Woohoo! Another evil workday saved from the clutches of zombie-ism, thanks!

It wasn't snowing on me, but there was snow on the ground here and there through Heckman. (Minus 1 C when I left Williams Lake headed west, and raining in Bella Coola, including my return eastbound out of the valley the next morning.) The "hill" wasn't quite as easy coming back up in the rain as it was going down in the dry, but even if more challenging, going up was better psychologically than down.

I was wishing for tires that were a bit more dual-sporty, though.

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Old 10-06-2010, 08:40 AM   #116
david white
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdrocks
Day 10: Continued

The Vermonters and the Newfy all left me, I had my mind on another big breakfast. The gal running the café was a lively French woman with a twinkle in her eye and an easy laugh. If I were to bet, I would say that she liked men and men liked her. Some women live their lives in a comfortable coexistence with men, the experience full of humor, sharing, and love…she was one of those.

She spoke lightly accented English, and I got a boisterous laugh when I told her about my disasters with the French language yesterday. She said “You need to study and then practice, lots of practice”. When I looked directly across to her and make eye contact, she said “No, no, never. You can’t practice here”, but then she laughed, shaking her finger at me. The breakfast was excellent, blueberry pie for dessert. I don’t know where I’ll end up today, but I better start riding.

More wet road, but I was feeling good, must have been the pie. Good pie trumps a rainy day on wet gravel anytime. I was hittin’ a nice fast groove, but then road construction with one of those count down timers. I like those timers, but when I rode up and just missed the green light, the damn red light timer said 600, as in ten minutes. WTF? Drawing the 600 card makes it seem like you should come back some time next week. The truck driver behind me takes the opportunity to take a pee in the middle of the road, plenty of time for that.



Through the construction zone and on my way to Gagnon, the old company town that Hydro Quebec built, populated, depopulated, and then dismantled. It’s kind of odd to ride 100 miles of gravel and then hit a paved section way out here, but that’s what you find when you get to Gagnon. Rough pavement just south of town, then more typical pavement north. It looks like someone still mows the grass in the medians of the divided highway in the center of the town site.



Time to crank it up, and I’m running 80 cruise, confident I’ve got enough fuel to reach LabradorCity. The country has opened up and I like what I see, green to the horizon, and a patch of blue sky.





The road turns back to gravel after about 50 miles, and now it’s very dusty, the rain never got this far north. There are numerous small rivers crossing the road, and the bridge is always a good place to stop if there’s no traffic.



A heavy tanker truck passes me on the bridge. The bridge becomes a trampoline, there had to be six inched of vertical movement, and the bridge was still moving long after the truck was out of sight. Wow, I hope they inspect these things frequently. Fires had burned up here also, and a combination of dust and smoke must have reduced visibility to near zero.



This had to be some wild country before the road was punched through to develop the mines still farther north.



Southbound truck traffic was heavy and the dust was blinding. Looking down the road, I can see a bike, then another, must be the Vermont crew. When I catch them I find Martin, then Roman, Jason, and Mark. Roman was standing on the pegs, going slow as he picked his line through the marbles. As I pass them, I understand what was going on here. The group was letting Roman set the pace, and Martin was riding herd, keeping an eye on things. Sure, the pace was slow, but it was good to see that his friends had stuck with him and done the decent thing. I could blast right by, but then I had a recent thousand mile gravel tuneup under my belt already, while they had just started the gravel. Ahead of the riders is the Newfy truck, and he’s creating so much dust I just can’t pass him safely, so I back off.

Another little piece of pavement, then right back in the dust.



I stopped at the one lane bridge over the Riviere aux Pekans to take a break and wait for the Vermont boys just to make sure that everyone was still right side up. That piece of road was full of marbles over a hard subgrade, making riding a challenge.



While waiting, I perform my own bridge inspection and find the pins holding the structure together secured with bent nails, some galvanized, some rusty. Hmmm…not good, someone with evil intent could knock that bridge apart in thirty minutes if they were ambitious, or the nails could just rust away and the thing fall down on it’s own.



A northbound French woman in an SUV stops and says “Your friends are coming, pretty soon they are coming”. It had been a while, so I asked if they were ok, and got “Yes, they are all riding, coming soon”. When I said “Merci”, she laughed and was gone in a cloud of dust. I need more practice I guess, people still laugh when I try out one word.

Ten minutes later, a southbound pickup stops to see if I’m ok. A middle aged French couple speaking decent English and we have a lively conversation on the side of the road. I was covered with dust from the road and must have been a sight. I didn’t realize how dirty my face was until I looked in the mirror later. They leave with a wave, and a few minutes later I see a bike coming around the curve before the bridge, Mark on the Wee Strom.



The others were behind him and coming along at a safe pace. Jason was in second on the Tiger and his first words were “I’m never taking this bike up here again”. He had MT60’s on the 17” wheels and said they just weren’t up to the job. An excellent young rider, he would later figure out the gravel and ride that bike at good speed. Roman and Martin came in next, Roman in rising spirits with no incidents on this road, a confidence builder. Martin was dusty, but smiling and relaxed. He had been to TDF, and I doubt this road was anything he hadn’t seen before. I still planned to be past LabradorCity today, so goodbye, and I was riding north again.


(To be continued...)


How'd ya like the fire lake section of 389? Any trains come wailing by at warp speed?
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Old 10-06-2010, 12:44 PM   #117
Throttlemeister
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RRVT
I love this RR. Can't wait to see how you'll descibe what we called the "Princess of Labrador".
Are you talking about Money Penny, the famous KLR rider from Eastern Labrador:
She's the hottie who rides

At the P&K store her mom owns.

Keep up the good work JD, it takes some quality time
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Old 10-06-2010, 03:57 PM   #118
jdrocks OP
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Originally Posted by ArthDuro
snow and big rigs just keeps getting better....... eh

more big rig drama coming up...
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Old 10-06-2010, 04:10 PM   #119
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Originally Posted by L.B.S.
Woohoo! Another evil workday saved from the clutches of zombie-ism, thanks!
my pleasure.

if that's the coast range in the background of your bike photo, there's much more snow than what i saw in june/09.

if you don't find the "Hill" wet, the road crew would be happy to tear it up and soak it down all by themselves.

nice bike!
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Old 10-06-2010, 04:13 PM   #120
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Originally Posted by david white
How'd ya like the fire lake section of 389? Any trains come wailing by at warp speed?
only one train and it wasn't moving all that fast. very dusty through there, with a stream of southbound trucks.
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