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Old 07-04-2012, 07:59 PM   #46
theofam OP
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Chet, you're right! We don't care if you buy your old bike back. Just ride with us again!!

We've seen a couple KTMs on our trip. They're tough looking - well suited to a stallion like you.
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Old 07-04-2012, 08:44 PM   #47
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Old 07-04-2012, 10:24 PM   #48
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Day 5 of 42 – Oh, Canada!

This morning started in Whitefish where it ended last evening – at the Buffalo Café for breakfast. They’ve been serving breakfast since 1979, so you know they’re doing something right! There were no educational jellies found.

We each added a half quart of oil after refueling, and off we went. About five miles into the ride, a deer, previously hidden by a tree’s shadow, appeared in the tall, roadside grass. It froze, took a leap . . . and went toward the trees. WHEW! DonnyO moved over to the left tire track in hopes of improving reaction time should it occur again.



Forty-five minutes later we were



A few minutes of questioning from the border agent, and we were in Canada!



Flags of our northern brethren flying proud alongside the Stars and Stripes!



If you have an unhealthy fear of mountains, don’t visit. They rise around you, engulfing every vision with their grandeur.



Their stark, granite-capped tops cling to snow from seasons past.



While rivers like the Kootenay and Columbia attempt to steal it away, engorged with their bounty.



Schizophrenic rock formations could be the color of limestone one corner



And flagstone the next



The day was filled with gentle, sweeping corners and relaxed, sun-soaked straightaways.



Onward through Kootenay National Park we went with streams rushing roadside and mountains towering above. Nary a photo turned out, though.

We then rode a seamless transition into Banff National Park,



and we were in Alberta!



Name one person with cooler helmet hair than me - BETCHA CAN'T!

We weren’t looking forward to burning highway miles on Canada’s national Highway 1, but even the major highways in Canada are stunning.



Canadians are friendly – even to their wildlife. Bridges like this, along with their accompanying underpasses, have allowed over 220,000 wildlife crossings since 1996. Black bears and cougars appreciate the underpasses, while grizzlies, deer, elk, and wolves gravitate toward the overpasses. Automobile vs. wildlife collisions have been reduced by 80%.



Even the view from our room at the Lake Louise Inn is spectacular.



On a personal note, DonnyO’s one tough hombre. He decided to “cowboy up” and ride through significant pain the last few days with his ailing ribs. So, tomorrow is a well-timed rest day. We will see what Lake Louise has to offer and report back!
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:40 AM   #49
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Wow - I've never been that part of the Rockies. Spectacular. Good on you for taking pics!
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Old 07-05-2012, 04:29 AM   #50
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I am in enjoy
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Old 07-05-2012, 05:00 AM   #51
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Great pictures. Brings back all the memories. Ride on
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Old 07-05-2012, 06:17 AM   #52
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Incredible Scenery

Well Fellas....the last 2 days worth of posts and pictures have been absolutely incredible!!!! The mountains and the overall scenery are just stunning!! I hope your 4th was quiet and peaceful and enjoy the day of R&R / Healing!! This is my new favorite T.V. show and I cannot wait to tune in every morning!!
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Old 07-05-2012, 06:32 AM   #53
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And subbed :)
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Old 07-05-2012, 08:06 AM   #54
Chet
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Show worth watching.

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Originally Posted by MBackman View Post
Well Fellas....the last 2 days worth of posts and pictures have been absolutely incredible!!!! The mountains and the overall scenery are just stunning!! I hope your 4th was quiet and peaceful and enjoy the day of R&R / Healing!! This is my new favorite T.V. show and I cannot wait to tune in every morning!!

I agreed! This should be a TV show.
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Old 07-05-2012, 03:50 PM   #55
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Great start, pictures and writing
I am in for this one
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Old 07-06-2012, 08:52 PM   #56
theofam OP
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Jorrie, Wolfy, sgio, very cool to have you following us!

I apologize for not updating last night. Not only was it a long "rest day," but wi-fi was atrocious! I could have written you each a personal note and delivered it quicker.

Updates on days 6 and 7 are coming momentarily!
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Old 07-06-2012, 09:01 PM   #57
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Day 6 of 42 – Rest Day? Pshhh, RIGHT!

Our first rest day was Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada. We slept in until 8:30am, which felt WONDERFUL!

Clear eyed and rested, we headed up the hill toward Lake Louise on our bikes in street clothes. I yelled to DonnyO, “I wonder if they have a helmet law in Canada?” “I guess we’ll find out!” he fired back. Moments later, a park ranger pulled alongside and let us know we needed them. So, back we went to get them, along with some additional layers to ward off the chill.

At the base of Lake Louise is Fairmont’s Chateau Lake Louise, a lavish hotel we opted to forgo given the $650/night rate to look over the Lake. Breakfast there looking out on the Lake was the next best thing. Even the chandeliers are groovy!



Lake Louise is partly fed by Victoria Glacier, which you can see above the Lake.



The obligatory pic to prove we were there.



We spoke about canoeing, but opted out given the motion wouldn’t fare well with DonnyO’s ribs. Plus if we dumped it, I’d be heartbroken losing the camera and pics!



Mount Lefroy off Lake Louise, pictured here, and Mount Victoria create the stunning backdrop to Lake Louise. The green of the Lake is attributable to something known as “glacier flour” which is suspended in the water.



We decided it would be cool to check out the town of Banff when we finished. Heck, it was only 30 miles away from Lake Louise, so, why not get back on the bikes?

As you might imagine, logging is an instrumental industry in this part of Canada. Trucks loaded with logs and processed wood are abundant.



Just outside Banff, we stopped roadside for these pics –





when we met Nick, a retired firefighter from Calgary, on a KLR650.



Nick was kind enough to snap a photo of us.



DonnyO wanted to know if we could find a quart of BMW oil in Banff. Nick explained, “No, but Calgary has some! And, it’s only 130KM (80 miles) away.” DonnyO and I looked at each other, shrugged our shoulders, and decided to go.

The views on your way to Calgary are still jaw dropping for awhile.



Miles later, they change to green, rolling farm country.



After our dirt bike riding in Wyoming, I noticed my final drive was leaking. It was still leaking in Calgary.



Dan in Blackfoot Motorrad’s Service Department kindly put me at the front of the service schedule while DonnyO shopped for oil.

Out front of the dealership



I laid under this nice tree and had a great conversation with my lovely bride!



Bike fixed, oil acquired, we were off to Banff for dinner! As we rode Thursday-afternoon, rush-hour traffic, we started out of town and this awaited us. YUK!



It looked gnarly, and it was. We were hailed on for five miles, the latter of which actually had tire tracks separating the amassed hail. And, it hurt! Fifty miles an hour plus marble-size hail resulted in DonnyO’s second set of injuries – arm and leg welts!

We could see through the storm, so we chugged along and minutes later were greeted with this view.



Jackets unzipped, standing on our pegs, we rode for 10 miles to dry out our soaked riding gear. Dinner at The Meatball in Banff was just what we needed to shake off the cold.

Riding into the falling sun, we had some great views!





Another day came to an end. A 240-mile “rest day,” that is!
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Old 07-06-2012, 10:35 PM   #58
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Day 7 of 42 – Jasper Challenges Glacier – Photo of the Trip?

We started early, opting to ride a few hours before eating breakfast. Though I doubt I’d ever get tired of the view from our Lake Louise room:



It was time to get going. Kind of tough, though, when it’s 33 degrees Fahrenheit upon departure!



But, early bird gets the worm! The Jasper National Park employee was still setting up her booth, so she waived us through. Then . . . it happened. Jasper had been reading this blog about how beautiful Glacier, Kootenay and Banff National Parks had been. Frankly, Jasper had had enough! So, Jasper threw down the gauntlet with THIS!



Miles after the above pictures, we saw our first black bears. Two of them lumbered along the road. I dared not stop and snap a photo, so you’ll have to trust me on this one!

I named this one “Shark Tooth.” Probably has another, properly appointed name, but I don’t much care.

Shark Tooth



Bikes resting at Bow Lake



Lucky family that decided to build at Bow Lake



Yawn. More mountains.



They’re everywhere – even behind you.



West Saskatchewan River flows into the valley floor below.



This highway is known as Icefields Parkway. Here is Columbia Icefield. As you stand upon the Icefield, you stand upon ice as deep as the Eiffel Tower is tall.



Endless Chain is the name of this portion of the mountain range.



As your awe of one view wears off,



you simply turn a corner for the next feast for your senses.



Rolling into Jasper,



we found Coco’s Diner for breakfast



where DonnyO showed he still has arm welts from the hail yesterday!



A quick check of my bike before leaving Jasper revealed my final drive seal was . . . NOT SEALING?! It was dripping more than before I had it “fixed” yesterday in Calgary! I was nervous, because there is no way to know how much oil is in a final drive without dropping the oil. But, ya know what, I was riding!



Plus, there aren’t too many places you can come across a moose!



North of Jasper we headed through Grande Cache toward Grande Prairie for the evening. The scenery was full of rolling hills.



I purchased two quarts of synthetic 75w/90 in Grande Cache for $20/quart and off we rode the final 200KM to Grande Prairie. I didn’t take many pictures but instead focused on what I would do if the final drive were to run dry and seize - fun to rehearse panic situations in your head for two hours.

The final drive was still leaking – guess that meant it had oil!



I also developed a loud “clunk” today when hitting bumps and negotiating curbs. I found this mess on my front fender – looks like I blew the front shock! That won’t be a cheap fix. Sorry, babe!



While DonnyO was checking in to the hotel, I was consulting the Yellow Pages (yep, they’re in Canada, too) for a beauty supply shop. Half an hour later, I had this – my graduated cylinder for measuring oil replete with tapered fill nozzle for the final drive fill hole.



A quick stop at Safeway for a roll of paper towels and a jar of applesauce, and we were headed back to determine the extent of the oil leak.

After a nice father-son applesauce moment, off came the back tire. Time to drop the oil!



I had marked 100ml increments on the empty applesauce jar, and it had about 175ml of 180ml still in the final drive – WHEW! That leak, though messy, wasn’t nearly as bad as once thought. I’ll drain it again in two days to determine the rate of the leak. If it holds as well as I hope, I may not need to check it again until the next BMW dealership in Fairbanks in two weeks. Fingers crossed!

Time for sleep – odd to see it’s dusk at 11:15pm!
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:13 PM   #59
conchscooter
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Broken shaft seals are a real disappointemnt to see still on these BMWs.
I thought they had this licked.
Great trip though, and the photographs and commentary go well together.
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Old 07-06-2012, 11:36 PM   #60
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Far too many places in America have needed these for decades. Props to Canada for doing the right thing.

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Originally Posted by theofam View Post

Canadians are friendly – even to their wildlife. Bridges like this, along with their accompanying underpasses, have allowed over 220,000 wildlife crossings since 1996. Black bears and cougars appreciate the underpasses, while grizzlies, deer, elk, and wolves gravitate toward the overpasses. Automobile vs. wildlife collisions have been reduced by 80%.


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