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Old 07-08-2013, 06:27 AM   #46
TarmacSurfer
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That's some serious fog you encountered!! Keep on rolling
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Old 07-09-2013, 06:52 AM   #47
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Day 5- July 8

We spent the night at the Aspen Inn, Grand Marais MN. Rooms were a bit pricey ($109 per night) but included a pool, wifi, free laundry, a continental breakfast, and covered parking for the bikes. Well worth the money to do laundry and recoup a little.



I had to try a donut (a skizzle to be precise) from the World’s Best Donut shop.



Donut was okay, not world class in my opinon… This place next door though was pretty cool.



We then headed north on MN state road 61 to the border.



First stop of the day was the Harley Dealership in Thunder Bay so Tom could buy a overpriced t-shirt. Forgot to get a picture of it, but it is right off the main road into town. Second stop was for my coffee fix and lunch. It had been 4.5 days since I had my last Tim’s



We then headed north out of Thunder Bay on the Trans-Canada Hwy.



Stopped to take a look at the Terry Fox Memorial. Terry needs no introduction for our Canadian readers, but for everyone else… Terry was in remission from a battle with a cancer that took one of his legs. To raise money and awareness of Cancer he ran the Marathon of Hope in 1980-81 from Newfoundland across Canada. He did not make it, stopping near Thunder Bay and passing away shortly thereafter. Today, most Canadian cities have an annual Terry Fox Run in his honour and for a fundraiser for cancer



Next was the Sleeping Giant Provincial Park road. This is a must ride if you are doing the circle tour!!! The road is in good condition, we saw nearly no other cars (other bikes though!) and is full of twisties. It winds through some amazing forests, highlands, and has many lookouts along the way. Takes about 1.5 hours to run down and back taking your time.













We had to stop along the way for our first wildlife encounter of the day, a turtle in the road. Tom saved it before the one car that drives down the road each day came by to squish it.





We saw 2 deer while in the park as well but couldn’t get the camera ready for a photograph quick enough. Great lookout of the Sleeping Giant



At the end of the road is Silver Islet. A very quaint little hamlet, exceptionally quiet down there and the scenery is amazing. We chatted for some time with one of the locals who told us the general store had recently closed because the owner had fallen ill. The store has been there since the early 1900’s. Hope it reopens, from the stories told it was quite the place.



We then headed up the Ouimet Canyon Road and stopped in at this place



We had to check out Canada’s longest suspension bridge. It did not disappoint! What a feeling being out over the canyon. You can really feel the sway in the bridge with even just the 2 of us on it. We would recommend it to anyone. Considered the zip line, it looked really cool too but they wanted $60 for it! Too rich for our blood





Then on to Ouimet Canyon. You have to take a steep winding road up the side of the mountains. Very nice road! The canyon is very impressive. Only a short 10-15 minute hike from the parking lot.





On our way back on the canyon road we ran into 2 black bears, a mamma bear and a cub. The momma bear got way up on her hind legs when we approached, clearly telling us not to come any closer. Luckily Tom was able to snap a quick shot with the handlebar cam before they ran off. Too bad we couldn’t get a closer shot. Another 2km up the road we saw a another bear but it too ran off before we could get the cameras out.



We stopped for the night near Dorion, Ontario at the Wolf River campground. Neat small old campground, it has been here since 1936. The original trans-canada runs right through the middle of the campground. We had noticed for the last few hours how bad the black flies were getting but decided that we were at the most northern point of the trip and we had to tough it out. Great campground with super clean showers, cheap rate ($22), good firewood and a nice owner. But man were the flyies really really bad.



Nevertheless we had to make the most of it and enjoy the evening. I broke out the mini bottle of wine I picked up in Wisconsin and huddled up close to the smoke of the campfire where the flies didn’t like to be.





I would recommend this campground to anyone, but only if you are coming later in the summer when the fly season is over. 202 miles today.
Tomorrow we continue eastward.
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Old 07-09-2013, 07:56 PM   #48
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Day 6- July 9

We awoke this morning in the Wolf River Campground. Tom and I both woke about the same time, 6am. Got out of the tent for the obligatory morning trip to the bathroom and then immediatly climbed back in our respective tents to start packing. The bugs were just as bad this morning as they were last night. No breakfast in camp, just packup and get out. We backed up everything and was on the road in 20 minutes flat. Wet tents and all, it was just that bad!

The fog was intense this morning as we made out way into Nipigon for breakfast and to get some wifi.



We ate at the Husky Truck Stop and uploaded yesterdays report while we waited for the fog to lift. Well it didn't.



Not only was it foggy but it was cold! Got down to 46 while we were riding



This was our first day without a planned twisty road to ride. There is really only 1 way through this area so we tried to make the best of what was along the route. For instance, we stopped at the Aguasabon Falls and Gorge. Nice.





We stopped in Marathon for lunch. Decent place. Not somewhere to go out of your way for but if you want a solid and quick soup and sandwich this is the place



After Marathon the Trans-Canada moves inland away from the lake. That helped raise the temperatures (the themometre pic was actually taken here) and the fog was greatly reduced. The ride through here is quite nice.













All along the route they constantly remind you to watch out for the moose.
We certainly adhered to the warnings, not only to stay safe but also because we really wanted to add one to our wildlife sighting list. Thankfully the wilds didn't disappointed. We were able to get a quick shot of him while he was running away into the woods





We stopped for the day in Wawa. And of course had to get a photo with the famous Wawa Goose



They are calling for thundershowers tonight here in Wawa and areas south so we elected not to repeat the Porcupine Mountain day and get a motel. Had supper and settled in for the evening. 259 miles today.

Tomorrow we head along the scenic drive through Lake Superior Provincial Park and back into the upper peninsula of Michigan.
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Old 07-09-2013, 08:44 PM   #49
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Really enjoying the ride. Thanks
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Old 07-10-2013, 05:30 AM   #50
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Really enjoying the ride. Thanks
Thanks Jim!
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Old 07-11-2013, 10:46 AM   #51
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Day 7- The finale- July 10

We spent the night at the Bristol Motel in Wawa to keep out of the thunderstorms that were passing through. We expected the storm to continue into the morning hours but were pleased to see that it ended early morning. We waited a little while for the roads to dry then we packed the bikes up to head out.



Before we left we chatted again with Larry from Hamilton in the parking lot. Larry was just returning from a month long ride to Yellowknife and back on his V-strom 650. He had quite an adventure himself including having his bike stolen in Yellowknife and having to do some on-the-road electrical repairs. Fun to her the stories about his adventures.



We gased up and hit the road. Not 20 minutes south of Wawa on the Trans-Canada we hit very dense fog and a little later along some rain. Our first rain of the trip- we could have only been so lucky to have only had to ride in the rain for a couple of hours on a week long trip.

Don suited up for the rain



As a result we didn't see much of the scenic road between Wawa and Sault Ste. Marie, nor did we get many pictures because we didn't want to expose the handbar cam to the elements











Thankfully the weather cleared by the time we reached the Soo and we made out way over the border back into the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.



We stopped at ate lunch at the Antler's Restaurant in Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan. It is a bit of a tourist trap but the perch and whitefish were very good the decor is cool.



We decided to just jump on I-75 for the short run through the UP back to the Mackinaw Bridge. Our circle tour is now complete! We made it around Lake Superior!!



Because we had such poor riding weather in the morning and the weather had turned to a perfect blue sky and 75 degrees we decided to take a few last twisties on our way back down the Lower Peninsula. This is the North Black River Road, which is located just south of Cheboygan.









We stopped for the night in Mio at the Oscode County Campground which sits on the picturesque Au Sable River.





We sat around the campfire and reminisced about all of the adventures during our trip. What a great ride. If you are at all considering doing Lake Superior and are unsure if it is worth the time, trust us it is.

Our ride is over but the memories will live on. Till next time...

Don

(P.S- thanks again to everyone for their encouragement and suggestions along the way)
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Old 07-11-2013, 02:01 PM   #52
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Thank you for taking the time to post this info and pics. It really has helped me in planning my ride around the lake. I hope to do it yet this summer.

You did a great job here,

Thanks again
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Old 07-11-2013, 02:49 PM   #53
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Our Final Route

Here is our final route. All 3,323KM (2,065 miles) of it!

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Old 07-11-2013, 04:18 PM   #54
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Thanks for posting this RR, and glad to see you made it safely! ride on.
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Old 07-12-2013, 03:55 PM   #55
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Thanks for making me homesick for Canada. Lovely pics!
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Old 07-12-2013, 07:40 PM   #56
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Thumb Enjoyed the RR

I rounded Superior in 07.

Really is no such thing as "the same trip."
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Old 07-12-2013, 07:46 PM   #57
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Thanks for the report and pics. Some good tips in there. Kudos for toughing out the flies!
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Old 07-13-2013, 04:54 AM   #58
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Thanks for the report and pics. Some good tips in there. Kudos for toughing out the flies!
They should tell you to bring an extra bag of blood with you when you do Superior, those bugs were intense!

Thanks again!
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Old 07-13-2013, 02:33 PM   #59
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Thanks for sharing. Great report and pics.
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:01 PM   #60
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I just got back from lake superior ride. Your report and tips paid off, thanks again! I did 1427 miles. The first 3 days was very rainy and temps in the 40'a and 50s. The last two were sunny and temps between 60-70.

I really want to know what's up with the south bounty road pavement cutouts. You know, the road from the porcupines south
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