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Old 06-05-2011, 08:10 AM   #16
caroline OP
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The record ride has started!

Nick left Prudhoe Bay at 14.40 BST today. 05.40 local time. It was raining so the piste may be a bit heavy. But he is on the best bike for this, the Yamaha Super Tenere.
I hope he will send me a blog later today but he really has to keep moving and make the best time he can in the long daylight hours.

Good luck Nick. Ride safe.
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:17 AM   #17
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caroline, thanks much for the info, links, etc. recently saw presentations by lois price and austin vince in san francisco..inspiring, funny, showing how anybody, really, can do this moto nonsense.

make a note of Hattar Motorsports in San Rafael, ca for hosting or support, no affiliation, just good folks. check out their facebook page.

now back to nick..go man go

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rockydog screwed with this post 06-05-2011 at 08:29 AM
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Old 06-05-2011, 10:05 AM   #18
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Off to a good start there Nick, good luck and ride safe.

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Old 06-05-2011, 10:28 AM   #19
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Good Luck and Ride Safe!!
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Old 06-05-2011, 01:02 PM   #20
caroline OP
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News!

Just had Nick on the phone from a call box in Coldfoot.

Official start time for record ride was 05.15 local time. That's 14.15 BST.
And......fork seals just gone on bike. However it has just done 11,000 miles test ride from Ushuaia with some really tough piste, Ruta 40 and crossing the Andes 4 times on piste and across Bolivia off road......and more!
Tim at Wrights Motorcycle parts in Salt Lake City will put it 'right' I'm sure. Meantime Nick will just keep squirting in oil and keep on riding. Looking like a 950 mile day today.....more news later.
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Old 06-05-2011, 06:53 PM   #21
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Thanks Caroline..
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Old 06-05-2011, 07:10 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caroline View Post
Hi and thanks
Above all he hopes you will find it entertaining and maybe you will buy the book and film when they come out so he can finance this madness! Both out in the autumn. He would also love to do a lecture/film show in the UK AND the USA very soon.....would any of you be interested??? He is a great showman and very entertaining.
Thanks so much for your support and time.....I know you'd all rather be out riding than reading this!
I would certainly be interested. Good stuff!!!
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Old 06-05-2011, 08:08 PM   #23
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Good luck and Godspeed! When will he be in SLC, UT?
Wouldn't mind stopping by to say Hi and Good luck in person.
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Old 06-06-2011, 03:30 AM   #24
caroline OP
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Nick's progress

...Hi and good morning!
Nick expects to be at Wright's Motorcycle Parts in SLC Wednesday lunchtime. Keep an eye on his Spot....www.nicksanders.com
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Old 06-06-2011, 03:35 PM   #25
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UPDATE- Nick's first blog

Just arrived at the Prudhoe Bay Hotel, again. It’s getting familiar. I cannot believe how I recognise where to get gas, the start of the Dalton Highway and the hotel in such an obscure place. To world bikers Prudhoe, or more correctly, Deadhorse, is known as the northern start of the Pan Americas, the most northerly point accessible by road in North America. I nearly started the journey from Salt Lake City, ride north to Prudhoe then south to Ushuaia and finish in Salt Lake – same distance, same double and yet, not quite. The purists would say that not starting the journey at the top or the bottom is not acceptable. It’s as broad as it is long, but I don’t want anyone poking any holes into the credibility of this record ride.

Slept reasonably. The lack of darkness at night is disturbing. I a brimming with too much energy and don’t know how to switch off. I get my witness book signed at the reception desk. I a determined Guinness recognise this ride, on behalf of bikers so that they might have a go and break this record if I get it.

I set off. It’s blue skies and sunny but cold. The sea has frozen. I like Prudhoe because tourists don’t really get here, only travellers. Here we go.

The ride to Coldfoot and over the Atigun Pass is spectacular. Wild, spacious, raw, inaccessible to most travellers for most of the year. The Ice Road Truckers truck all year, down Ice Cut, up and down Chicken Run, down Oil Spill Hill, up and down Chicken Run, up Beaver Slide. It is minus seventy degrees in the winter, a little over freezing in the summer. The lakes are still frozen and we are in the warming up period.

The journey is going to be hard, I know it. I still struggle with the relevance of it and so far wonder what else would I do with 38 days of my life. Of course it’s longer than that. I have been thinking of this route for years and the double has been in my head for many months. Hundreds of hours of planning in my head. Sponsors, family, partners, friends, children become the recipient of my self centredness. I am like Truman Burbank in the Jim Carry film ‘The Trueman Show’. I have created my own world and then invite a few people to share in it.

My day includes blowing my horn at young moose as they ran alongside me. I ride at just the speed they dare not cross in front of me but not too fast to overtake and in this way I corralled them along the tundra. They gallop across the melting permafrost and into the shallow standing water, me blowing my horn when they dare veer off and for a mile or more we share this. It’s a moose joke.

The receptionist at the hotel, she’s called Berty. She was friendly, helpful and utterly not impressed with my adventure. ‘They all come up here’, she tells me, ‘all the nutters on the motorbikes’. She’s right, and going both ways is just twice the insanity. She hands me a key and go change.

The food in the hotel was free and you can eat all that you want. It’s a nice twist of hospitality having travelled so far on a bike that has now clocked up 16 665 miles. What a bike! This Super Tenere seems capable of taking everything I throw at it. I cannot make it meek. The R1 had that naughty streak and whilst not that, this bike is cheeky with it’s movements. It handles every range of surface imaginable, and, without any loss of comfort. Surely something should have snapped or come loose by now, but nothing, not a washer. We still have a very long way to go.

I ride hard and quite well actually. Feel strong because the project has started. Stop at Yukon Services by the river and meet a charming couple who sell me a bear tooth as a keep sake. They live up the river a way, all year and boy are they delightful and eccentric. I promise to visit them on the way back.

Now I am in Fairbanks, in Starbucks using their free wifi to write and send this blog. 300 miles more to go to reach 800 miles, let’s see.
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Old 06-06-2011, 03:38 PM   #26
caroline OP
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Photos

http://www.nicksanders.com
Tried to download some photos but failed!! so take a look at Nick's website for some great shots. (Will try to it right next time!)
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Old 06-06-2011, 11:27 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by caroline View Post
http://www.nicksanders.com
Tried to download some photos but failed!! so take a look at Nick's website for some great shots. (Will try to it right next time!)
Sorted for you Caroline !

Keep it up Nick - looking forward to following your adventure !





















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Old 06-07-2011, 09:25 AM   #28
caroline OP
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Update.

Nick caught 4 hours sleep last night and is heading off again towards Calgary. Rather a long Sanders Power Nap! On schedule for making Salt Lake City and Wright's Motorcycle Parts for a bit of work on his fork seals, tyre change and speedy service!
Also 'First Gear' appear to have stepped up to the mark to replace Nick's non-functioning heated jacket (Gerbing) with a jacket and gloves to take him over the Andes -15,000 feet in mid-winter - and across Patagonia where right now it is snowing. Quality heated gear is essential when you are riding 20 hours a day and through the night. First Gear come highly recommended by my sister and brother-in-law,Lisa and Simon Thomas, who have used their kit for several years http://www.2ridetheworld.com
Well that's all for now....keep your eyes on the count-up clock on Nick's website to see how he is doing.
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Old 06-08-2011, 01:40 PM   #29
caroline OP
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Thumb To 'Army Medic' in Salt Lake City

Nick is heading from Great Falls to Salt Lake City right now. Had to find a tyre at short notice as suddenly got down to the wire so this slowed him up a bit. He will be at Wright's Motorcycle Parts, 3474 South State Street but probably not until 9 pm local time. They are staying open to do a service, and fit a new set of tyres and a few other bits a pieces.......so then he can get a couple of hours sleep and be off again to head for the Mexican border. If you miss him this time we will be aiming to include Wright's in the USA lecture tour.....watch the website for details.
And he will be passing by on the way back up very soon! say, in about 32 days time. He is NOT normal!

I will post Nick's second blog later tonight too.....
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Old 06-08-2011, 02:34 PM   #30
caroline OP
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Nick's second blog

At 5.15 this morning, exactly 24 hours after leaving Prudhoe I had ridden 900 miles. The early section to the Atigun Pass was dirt with gravel then tarred until Coldfoot. After that it was dirt until 85 miles before Fairbanks. Ice Cut, Gobblers Knob, Oil Spill Hill, Chicken Run and Beaver Slide are all part of the historic legend of the Ice Road Truckers. It is very cold and the rain stings my face. The road is slippery and no trucks pass so I am alone. The lakes are still and the leaves of the tundra are still, but what gives me such an impression of being so far from anywhere is the silence. When I switch off the engine it is these quite moments that unnerve me. My head is full of the noise of the bike, of the noise of my thoughts, the schedules and plans, the seriousness of intent, the fear of failure. It is all of this cacophony of internal sound that pulses against the nothingness sounds of true silence.
I exit the US and entry into Canada at Beaver Creek. Buckshot Betty’s restaurant is there, brightly painted and a handful of clapperboard building line the one street. A population of 80 with a small transient influx when the weather warms.
The bike is performing so well. I need this bike not to fail and oddly feel close to its workings and mechanics. It is smooth and forgiving and takes bends and gravel gently. It is tough yet friendly, not hard and quick like the R1. I ride on past Destruction Bay and then Haines Junction, turning left for Whitehorse and on towards the Northern Lodge at Muncho Lake Park.
After Muncho the road climbed and fell, winding between steeply banked conifers on the right leading to high shafts of scree and the Stone Mountain itself. Further on Stone Mountain parodies itself. This is the stuff that creates legends. Obscure but credible adventurers come here to be apart, living in a caravan on the edge of Summit Lake I heard of one guy having walked across the USA now lives in a caravan. It is hugely isolated here. Either you need a love of yourself or a dislike of the proximity of people to be in such a raw environment. Yet, the sole highway, the Alcan passes through the place. Summit Café is derelict, symptomatic of the higher fuel prices that have decimated the desires of the driving public to journey such great distances. I remember a vibrant warm restaurant and pretty waitresses, now boarded windows. The disrepair gives a sad sense of neglect.
This is my favourite part of the 1500-mile Alaskan Highway. The road narrows and twists and climbs. In the failing half light, there is a blue glow. The last 50 miles are ridden very hard and quick. The road has dried and the lightness of the surface brightened in what is left of the flimsy daylight. It is 11pm but still there is a blue in the sky that has not gone black. Already there is a noticeable difference between Prudhoe Bay where at this time of year the sun never sets.
I ride to the first garage and check out the cheapest motel – Shannon Motel behind me. Steak and chips? Down the road to Boston Pizza for a 10oz New York strip. Within 15 minutes I have a place to sleep and am eating. 30 minutes later, writing then asleep. This is the end of day 2. 900 miles on day 1 through hard gravel and bitterly cold rain, 842 miles today. I am 150 miles down on my best schedule, a day up on last years run.
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