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Old 05-27-2013, 10:46 PM   #76
Bambooda OP
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The Alaska Highway

Dear Mother and Girlfriend,

I am still alive,

I might not come home though...

J.B.

The beginning of the Alaska Highway:


From Dawson Creek to Fort Nelso the ride really wasn't spectacular, but once you hit the mountain range again...HOLY CRAP! I might have to stay here a little longer! You know, 20, 30 years....


Again, I have a really hard time passing up an opportunity to head off road, especially in an area as beautiful as this. This was another trail that I had spotted on the GPS which made a short loop back to the highway. The trail climbed up the mountain a bit then traversed it. the views where spectacular:


For those of you who don't know, Watson Lake has a Signpost forest. There are over 75,000 signs, it is quite incredible. While I was there, there was a group of 5 travelers in a retrofitted mini-bus mounting a CD to a post. I asked "Is that a special CD?", they replied, "No, it's Eric Clapton, he just stopped working 2 days ago, this seemed like a good place for him". There are things like that all over the forest, it is wicked!! Obviously I couldn't leave without making my own!


Unfortunately I have not figured out how to get movies to work! I have some good stuff! hopefully I can figure it out soon.
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Old 05-27-2013, 11:10 PM   #77
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Laugh It's all fun and games until something breaks... Then it's an ADVENTURE!!!

In Whitehorse, I asked the host I am staying with if there were some cool places that I could camp at out in the bush. Turns out there are some really wicked campground places just outside Whitehorse in the Ibex Valley. He came out on his KLR and showed me around. It's a super cool place where people take their bikes and quads and go riding. The place is wicked! But here I go again....... I just can't keep the bike in one piece can I? I had some of my luggage with me because I was unsure of weather I was going to come back that day or just stay the night, but I washed out on a bit of sand and mashed up the mounts to my panniers pretty good.

PROBLEM:


SOLVED!!!

Never leave home without your rope, kids!!!

I'll take this time to do a short review of the racks on the bike. They are Sw-Motech racks, featuring the Quick-Lock fasteners which allows the entire pannier to be removed in LITERALLY, less than 20 seconds, and leaves only tiny bits of extra stuff on the bike once removed.

I don't like them.

PRO'S: They remove quickly and easily. Good if you have a fancy-wicked-cool-shiny-fast-sexy-awesome-bitchin motorcycle and you want panniers but really care about the looks of your bike when you're not using them. I drive a KLR. I obviously don't give a crap about this.

CONS: WEAK. WEAK WEAK WEAK WEAK WEAK. The mounting points to the Bike: WEAK. The quick lock fasteners: WEAK. The racks going out from the fasteners: WEAK. Ok, ok, so maybe you say I'm a little hard on them, but I want my racks to the protect the bike in a fall, not be the cause of something breaking.

I'm not saying these are bad racks. I'm saying they are not suitable for my style (wreckless???....). For someone who has no inclination to hit the dirt, these are probably great for them because installation and removal is a breeze. I did not purchase these racks, they were already on the bike, but next racks I buy, I will try to find the most bulletproof ones I can.

Back to the ADVENTURE!!!!!

Of course! just around the corner from wiping out what do we encounter??? Water crossings!!!! Woohoo!!!
Buddy on the R100 Gave 'er Hell!!! I was inspired by his confidence:

After he got stuck up on the logs, I trudged through the water and started pushing on the rear rack. I was just getting FED with mud and water, I really should have kept the camera rolling, it must have been hilarious!! I was filthy!!!

Here's my go at the second water crossing we encountered, I hit a little dip near the end and I think a bit of water got in the intake, thus why I stalled. But good 'ol KLR, she pulls through in the end!!!!



Quote:
Ok ok, so the last big post was a bit dry, but don't worry, ill make it up to you, I promise.
Quote:
and like I promised, I got some juicer stuff for the next post!
SEE! I told you...

Bambooda screwed with this post 05-28-2013 at 12:10 AM
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Old 05-28-2013, 04:01 AM   #78
MizzouRider
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I can't see the videos.
Something about Facebook privacy rules..
Can anyone else see them? (Is it just my iPad?)

Great RR so far. Heading to Alaska in 24 days.. But who's counting?
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Old 05-28-2013, 04:55 AM   #79
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Damn...sorry to hear about the racks.....disect them and use a bolt through the attachment lock instead of the fancy turn bukle thing. OR weld them solid. They do work well for their intended purpose but do tend to shake loose. I have another buddy with the same issues. Think Packrat when you buy your next set unless you can make your own.

Isn't the scenery fantastic! It's one of the few places I would move to......it's God's country and I'm by no means religious! I have a hard time understanding people who get used to this type of landscape.......yes I'm coming from Ontario where trees and more trees line the horizon. Much better to have those pointy sharp rocks on the horizon which is up and not in the distance...imho.

I also can't see your videos, same message as above.

Keep going and watchout for mountain sheep or goats next.....they don't care about bikes or cars either!
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Old 05-28-2013, 06:17 AM   #80
dryden_rider_54
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Told ya....It (Yukon) really is larger than life right?

Take it easy on the equipment, lots of ride left ha ha
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:47 AM   #81
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Enjoying the posts. I hope to make it up there someday soon.

On a side note, I can't see the videos either. I hope you get it fixed so we can see those water crossings.

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Old 05-28-2013, 09:02 AM   #82
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BOOOOO! I will try to figure out the videos. Maybe I gotta put them on YouTube first instead of Facebook. But I hope to make it to the ferry to do the golden circle today, so no time now!!!
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Old 05-28-2013, 09:46 AM   #83
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bambooda View Post
BOOOOO! I will try to figure out the videos. Maybe I gotta put them on YouTube first instead of Facebook. But I hope to make it to the ferry to do the golden circle today, so no time now!!!
Stay safe and take lots of pictures or it didn't happen!
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Old 05-28-2013, 07:11 PM   #84
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bambooda View Post
Dear Mother and Girlfriend,

I am still alive,

I might not come home though...

J.B.
Dear J.B.,

NOT an option.

(Glad you're enjoying it!!!)

mamabaid screwed with this post 05-28-2013 at 07:20 PM
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Old 05-28-2013, 07:39 PM   #85
Mr. Bagel
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The video works for me.

Yay Mac!
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Old 05-28-2013, 08:09 PM   #86
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you will be a changed man after this trip for sure...going to find a job when you get home and having the craving to go away again will be in your soul. ENJOY!!!!!!! Be safe and we both LOVED Alaska!
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Old 05-29-2013, 05:58 AM   #87
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There's plenty of work in Alberta! That's a stone's throw from that scenery and an easy weekend's ride! Sorry mom.....lol......just speaking from someone who's got the itch to keep going back.......it must be easier to live there than pine away every year to go back....?
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:40 AM   #88
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Beaver Alert

Never mind the bears. Read this article about a killer beaver:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/0...n_3352353.html
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:50 AM   #89
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mamabaid View Post
Dear J.B.,

NOT an option.

(Glad you're enjoying it!!!)


Mothers.... you gotta love'm!
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Old 06-01-2013, 05:13 PM   #90
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Cool2 Wwwooooaaaahhhh alaska!!!!!

It's been a while since the last post! A lot to catch up on.

But first HOLY S*&^ F%$^ ASKLJDHSLHUDGS*&)(^DSKLJHSD*&(S^DUIGSHD*&^SDYUGSD*&OTSGDKJGSDO*&SGTDLIBSD&O*GSDO*S&DTGLIBSD ALSKAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The picture just doesn't do justice to the actual beauty of it there.

Ok, now that I got that out of my system, lets rewind a bit...

My first random encounter with another ADVRider was a dude riding up to to Alaska from Washington to do a month expedition up Mount Denali (previously Mt. Mckinley). Intense!!! I met him just outside Watson Lake on the Alaska Highway

He was pulled over on the side of the road having some tea, and I noticed he had a KLR too, absolutely overloaded with stuff, so I had to pull over and see what he was all about. Turns out he had the same destination as me for that day, so we decided to ride together.

That night, I stayed in Whitehorse at a family friends house and he took off somewhere else. But down on my way to Skagway to take the ferry, who do I see hanging out at the dock about to load up to go to Haines?? Dave the Mountain climber! (509Rider), Hard to miss that orange Helmet.

We talked about our plans, and it seemed that our trips were pretty coincident, so we agreed to ride together. We figured we would make a pretty good team seeing that he is a wilderness EMT, and I know the KLR inside and out; together we have the know-how to fix both Man and Machine!

Here are the bikes all loaded and strapped down for the ferry ride to Haines. Good thing I bought those straps specifically for this ride! The waters were treacherous!!!!!...NOT. That was probably the smoothest ride on a boat I had ever experienced, the weather was fabulous and it was smooth sailing.

Not that it would have mattered if it fell over anyways haha, gotta love the KLR...

Haines is beautiful. Go there. They also have great beer.

We stopped by the Haines micro brewery and grabbed a growler for the campground, here is Dave hangin loose with a 1/2 gal of Spruce Tip lager.

(notice the T-shirt??? )
We went back to the brewery to refill the growler for the next day and I even got my own. Totally worth the extra weight AND IT"S CHEAP!!!! $5 for the bottle (1 time charge) and $11.00 to fill it with DELICIOUS beer.

Here is a view from the ride back up from Haines, absolutely STUNNING.


We stopped on the side of the road to eat lunch. Nothing fancy for us; but I wouldn't want it any other way, it was incredible just to stand there and look around


After fueling up in Haines Junction, we decided we would start looking for a campground, the map showed there was one about 100km up towards Alaska so we decided to drive that way. After an hour and a bit of driving, we arrived at the campground, and this is what we were welcomed with:

Alright. Fine. We'll find our own place to camp...

We drove about another 50km and pulled of on a road that went to some kind of mining operation or something, we went off towards a river and set up camp (yay topographic maps on GPS!)
Here is home for the night.


We were confronted with a problem once we found a place to stay. It was so hot out that day our beer had warmed up in our bags! OH NO!!!! HOW AWFUL OUR LIVES ARE!!!!! but have no fear! mother nature provided us with the perfect solution to our great dilemma!! Glacier runoff!!!!! Woohoo!!!!


After packing up our stuff and heading out on the highway, I noticed the bike was acting a bit squirly, every time I hit a bump the bike would pitch a bit to the side and wobble side to side for a bit before settling, it rapidly got worse so I pulled over to see what was up, a flat tire!!!! oh well, no big deal, just lay it over in a ditch! This is why we drive KLR's right?!?!?!

(Notice the T-shirt?!?!)
This makes it look like my bike exploded into 100 pieces and I crashed into the ditch haha. A lovely couple from Texas driving their Goldwing through all 50 states stopped and made sure everything was all good. (Yup, I said 50, they flew to Hawaii and rented a bike to drive there)


An hour later (yes, an hour, I was taking my time. The weather was wonderful) The bike was up on its feet and started without skipping a beat from where it left off. Gotta love the KLR. As mentioned before, a centerstand would have been wonderful, but as you have seen, not mandatory.

Once we arrived in Tok, we heard from the Librarian that there was a motorcycle-only campground just outside town we could stay in. SWEET! If anybody dares going to Alaska on motorcycle DO NOT SKIP THIS CAMPSITE, YOU MUST STAY THERE OR YOU ARE A BIG LOSER. This was the coolest place ever. Dave and I are early in the season, so we were the only ones to stay there that night, but without thinking twice, the moment the owner greeted us she offered to fire up the steam room for us so that we could unwind. How AWESOME! Along with a steamroom/Sauna there is a covered wash/cook station with 2 propane burners, a sink, and well water for the campers to use and a shop. Yes a SHOP! It was chock-full of tools/lubes/stands and just about everything you would need to do basic maintenance. We both changed our oil the morning after we camped there. Now for the punchline: It's $10 for a site, and because we both camped at one site it was $5/person! Holy cow! needless to say, we left her a sturdy tip. All the left over money goes to tools , supplies for the shop, and further park improvements. The host is a super-stellar Lady, and I will not go to Alaska again without staying at that campground.
Here is our lovely host

(Notice the T-Shirt?!?!?!?!?!?!

Here is the shop



PHEW!! that was a big one. I'm in Achorage now and will be onwards towards Fairbanks this evening. I consider this being about midway through my trip and am now on the return home. I may be putting in big days, so there might not be a ton of time for posts. But I'll be keeping everyone updated on any more exciting events to come! I still have yet to drive the Top of The World highway, as well as the Dempster after passing through Dawson.

There's lots more to see! Better hit the road!

Bambooda screwed with this post 06-01-2013 at 05:20 PM
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