ADVrider

Go Back   ADVrider > Riding > Ride reports
User Name
Password
Register Inmates Photos Site Rules Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 08-28-2013, 01:38 PM   #31
Dave Noel
Giv'er
 
Dave Noel's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2005
Location: Where the sun shines first
Oddometer: 690
Great ride report so far look forward to the rest.

yes Doug is the story teller for sure.
__________________
Yes, the bike is shit to ride, but so is a pissed off wife... Dim


Dave

Save $5 on a SmugMug account when you use this coupon: dSt7AIzm9VxEg
Dave Noel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2013, 08:32 PM   #32
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
Western Nfld

After a cold and wet breakfast we bid adieu to the Honda and headed across towards Gros Morne. The weather was very cold and pretty solid rain - my glove situation was becoming an issue, even with the heated grips raging, the wet gloves were preventing my hands from getting any warmth. Once we hooked back onto the highway, I bought a pair of $4 dollar dish gloves (touratec yellow at least), as a last ditch effort. Despite the less than manly look, the gloves allowed my grip heat to come though nicely and, with the back of my hand not being covered in a wet sponge, I actually stayed warm.The ride was pretty grueling. We stopped frequently to dry out (unsuccessfully), and fuel up with bad coffee.

We were delayed a few hours in Gander as Kman's dash console had come loose to the point where he couldn't turn the key in the ignition - the bolt for this is not easy to access. After fighting with it for a good while Kman resorted to zip-tying the unit to the frame securely enough that the key would work. We were back on the road! Unfortunately I have no pics as all of my battery operated devices were flat.

One of our plans for riding in NFLD, was to try and ride the old rail lines across the island, or at least sections of it. These trails have all been converted into a linear style provincial park. One particular segment cuts from Badger to Deer Lake, and is less distance than the highway. The only problem is, the trail is very remote - a breakdown, flooded section, or bridge washout, would have cost us many hours of backtracking on a cold and wet day. We both felt that this battle was better saved for another day.

I did chat with a young guy in Badger about the trailway condition - He had just wheeled up to the gas pumps on his ATV, helmet-less, with a kenora dinner jacket blowing open in wind. He kindly offered that it would take less time on the trail-way than on the highway, but then paused and looked at my yellow dish gloves and fancy pants BMW and asked skeptically, "well, how fast d'ya byes go on dem?" It was a great moment...I wish I had a picture.

We saw one moose and managed to make it all the way to Deer Lake where we were finally able to make a phone call to the Honda-Sapiens. They were another hour or so up in Rocky Harbour. We fueled up and pointed the bikes northwest - what an amazing ride in to Gros Morne on the 430. Every bend in the road was a wow moment - the scenery in the misty evening was phenomenal! I wish I had stopped to take pics here - I was just too tired and we were keeping our eyes peeled for errant moose. Our plan had been to camp, but man we we glad to see that the wives had rented this place. It was a long, long, cold day!

Some random games the next morning in front of our cabin.

The boys got down to some serious 2-wheeling in the parking lot the next day.

We decided to take a small boat ride from Norris Point to Woody Point. The ride was quick and fun. One of the deck hands was this guy...

Who was a riot!

Once across we hiked in the driving rain to the interpretive centre just outside of Woody Point.

The boys thought we were crazy.


We just missed some whales in the bay...

Woody point was a very cool little spot. Must return.

Lobster Cove Lighthouse.

The next day's mission was the Tablelands!


The boys got to do some climbing.

Great shot of Kman's.


Kman (aka, sir-sweats-alot) finally shedding the riding gear after the long hike. I was happy to have geared down in the parking lot.
How about a quick dip in the glacial stream?


I think the picture says it all!


The Table lands are a must see.

Levi made quite a donation at the park - the blackflies were mental.

Next stop, Cow Head for our last night of the family portion of our trip.
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-29-2013, 09:58 PM   #33
Amack37
Adventurer
 
Joined: May 2009
Oddometer: 15
Ouch!

Great shots! But wow! What a pain in the neck. He's a trooper.
Amack37 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 09:46 AM   #34
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
North to Cow head and beyond!

After donating some flesh and blood at the Tablelands we pointed north to Cow head for the night.
Beautiful ride north!


The beach at Cow Head was a bleak and desolate sight.


Another stellar camp meal at Lockston Provincial Park just north of Cow Head.


The boys were still having a crappy time.

The next morning we awoke to chilly temps but sunshine! This would be our last family day - on the docket, a boat tour in Western Brook Pond.



It was a magnificent sight to tour the Pond - the only downside was the sardine like conditions on the boat.


And with that our family part of this adventure closes. We were on a schedule to ride to the north west tip of the island to catch the ferry in St. Barbe, so we wished team-Honda a teary farewell and pointed the bikes north....

It was a lonely ride up the Viking trial....I had a lump in my throat for most of it.



St. Barbe was a very small outpost, definitely not a big tourist destination (although I did purchase a sweet camo hat at the gas station!).

The weather was cold! single digits and blowing about 25 knots. We had to wait for what seemed like an eternity before boarding the boat. The attendant made sure to warn us of the strong cross winds on the ramp onto the boat. I think he mentioned that a rider had dumped here recently while driving on - once we finally did ride across the ramp I understood why. The ramp looked like an armadillo's back of loose steel plates - with a splash of water and oil on top to keep it interesting...definitely a pucker moment!



Loaded-up! This boat had a much more utilitarian feel to hit - no fresh yellow paint or gleaming decks here.


We were very hungry at this point, although it was going to be a bumpy ride so Kman was a bit reluctant to tuck-in.


All was good after a meal - as long as Kman kept his eyes fixed on the horizon!

Next stop the Mainland! Blanc-Sablon Quebec awaits on the other side of the gulf of St.Lawrence.
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 01:38 PM   #35
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
Blanc-Sablon

Icebergs! We had been keenly scouring the horizon for some evidence of drift ice. On the first sight of land, I couldn't tell if I was staring at large white buildings or icebergs. It was exciting to lay eyes on the floating masses - even if they were far away.

The winds had pushed a few bergs into the harbour near Blanc-Sablon.


The ferry ride was pretty cool - the boat was older and rough around the edges with a seemingly permanent list to the side. We chatted with several truck drivers - folks thus far have been beyond friendly (as promised!), and it was great to chat with a few working men from the area.

We arrived around 8pm in the dusky glow and set out to find a campsite.


We spotted a sandy track next to the river just adjacent to the port....Investigating for possible camp spot was in order.

The sand was deep and soft as we scouted out the riverside for possible tenting locations. The ground was covered in what I would guess is a tundra like scrub, with the occasional deep hole similar to a St. Andrews sand trap. I was feeling pretty wiped out at this point and just wanted to find a place to squat without getting stuck or crashing. fast forward a few minutes and I have a very close call - start to bog down in the sand, throttle WFO, bike straightens out at this point, unfortunately I'm now pointed off of the sand track and the bike jettisons (with me on it) out of control over a 2' berm into the rough. I'm now off balance out of control, whiskey throttling over every bump... Somehow I manged to not crash - but it's pure luck that I didn't end up in one of the sand craters.

After the adreline rush faded we headed into the small town of Blanc-Sablon to inquire about camping next to the river. The ladies working at the supermarket / lunch bar / general store said we were welcome to camp anywhere! So we grabbed a few beers and some snacks and headed back to the spit of land jutting into the bay. This turned out to be one of the best camp-spots of the trip - stunning location! If I am ever going back this way I will camp there again.

Our spot for the night - note large craters in the tundra...




One of Kman's pics...(Note my awesome new camo hat!)

Some more shots from the campsite.




Kman's morning ritual - ummm, Kman, there are blocks of ice floating in there, brrrr! I'll stay dirty, thanks anyway.



Next stop - Red bay Labrador!
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 02:05 PM   #36
mcgarrett
Gnarly Adventurer
 
mcgarrett's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2012
Location: DC Metro area
Oddometer: 140
Great Ride Report and photos. What days were you on the Trans Lab? I'm wondering if we just missed crossing paths. We were going clockwise and got stuck overnight in Lab City due to the fire on June 28th. We made it through with an escort convoy on the 29th.
__________________
Trans Lab 2013 Ride Report
http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=903321
mcgarrett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 02:20 PM   #37
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
Hi McGarrett

Hi mcgarrett!

I enjoyed your report very much as well. We took the boat from St. Barbe on Tuesday July 2nd - they had been escorting vehicles through the fire zone, up until a few hours before we arrived at the road block 200km past Churchill falls. Stay posted for the full tale!
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 03:16 PM   #38
mcgarrett
Gnarly Adventurer
 
mcgarrett's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2012
Location: DC Metro area
Oddometer: 140
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bear Creek West View Post
Hi mcgarrett!

I enjoyed your report very much as well. We took the boat from St. Barbe on Tuesday July 2nd - they had been escorting vehicles through the fire zone, up until a few hours before we arrived at the road block 200km past Churchill falls. Stay posted for the full tale!
Thanks for the kind words. We must have just missed each other near St. Barbe on the 2nd. Chris and I were heading south on the Viking Trail from St. Anthony to Rocky Harbour, and we gassed up in St. Barbe around mid-morning (probably the same place where you bought your cool camo hat).
__________________
Trans Lab 2013 Ride Report
http://advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=903321
mcgarrett is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 03:31 PM   #39
squawk77
Dreamer
 
squawk77's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2010
Location: Cyberspace
Oddometer: 534
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bear Creek West View Post
This picture is just stunning. The colour and landscape catches my attention... and then Bam there's a huge waterfall off in the corner
__________________
ADVriders on Kiva | Balkans | Morocco | Alps | Corsica
squawk77 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 03:45 PM   #40
JJay51
Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2013
Oddometer: 36
What an excellent report, some beautiful pictures looking forward to the rest
__________________
Spain 2011/12

Euro 2013
JJay51 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 06:28 PM   #41
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
Thanks squawk77. It's a great shot for sure - likely due to the fact that I didn't take it! This one is compliments of my riding partner Kman.

Quote:
Originally Posted by squawk77 View Post
This picture is just stunning. The colour and landscape catches my attention... and then Bam there's a huge waterfall off in the corner
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-02-2013, 06:33 PM   #42
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
Thanks JJay51. I spent 3 weeks in the Uk last summer - one of which was in Wales just north of Tenby. You live in a beautiful corner, I would love, love, love to do some riding around there! The Scottish highlands are also on my hit list!
Cheers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by squawk77 View Post
This picture is just stunning. The colour and landscape catches my attention... and then Bam there's a huge waterfall off in the corner
Quote:
Originally Posted by JJay51 View Post
What an excellent report, some beautiful pictures looking forward to the rest
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-08-2013, 03:53 PM   #43
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
The ride to Red Bay

Our first night back on the mainland was excellent! after Kman's swim we pointed the bikes north along the coast... It was a cold overcast start to the day - I think we were both a little apprehensive as we knew that today was the day that the real Translab starts...


Bergs in L'Anse-au-Claire

The road up to Red bay is paved with some georgeous vista's across the barren landscape and some great ocean views over small harbours and bays.

A few km prior to Red Bay we came across a guy walking in the ditch, several hundred yards up the road his pick-up truck was stopped in the road - he had lost a tie-rod end and narrowly missed crashing into the guardrail - there were 100 spots where he could have careened into a rock-cut or dropped into a deep ditch or ravine...lucky dude.

Red Bay was cold and windy! Temps in the single digits and ice in the harbour.



We drove into town and passed the start of the gravel section towards Port hope Simpson - it looked a bit ominous with the gated entrance under the gloomy skies.

We had been hearing small snippets about the road closure and forest fires for the past week, but had always assumed that since the road was the connecting only link, the required resources would be in place to get the fires under control and allow safe passage. The information was scarce - a Parks Canada employee in Red Bay was kind enough to call ahead for us - the news was that vehicles were being escorted through. The oncoming traffic was virtually zero at this point - I can't actually recall a single southbound car.

Red Bay is a very small outpost with an amazing history of sheltering Basque Whaling ships from France and Spain in the period from 1520 - 1600. We took advantage of the awesome breakfast at the general store and hotel.


The offical start of the TransLab began late morning.



The idea that forest fires might be an issue seemed very distant in the cold rain near the coast. The road to this point was fairly loose but the lack of traffic and dust was allowing us to ease into the gravel...speeds gradually crept up to the point where 80 - 90km/h was comfortable.


Sign of things to come...


Time to fill the jerry can in Port Hope Simpson.

Next stop Happy Valley Goose Bay 407km down the road! This would be the longest stretch without services.
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-25-2013, 01:44 PM   #44
Bear Creek West OP
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Mar 2012
Location: Kingston / South Frontenac
Oddometer: 191
I'm Back!

Sorry to be sooo long completing my story! Work's getting in the way these days....

So, we are on route to Happy Valley Goose Bay! This would be the longest un-serviced stretch of the TransLab at approximately 410km. Jerry can and Rotopax filled to the brim - we headed off into the dust!

The riding proved challenging but manageable - our speeds were ususally in the 80 - 90km/h range and the gravel was fairly hard for the first stint.

We came across this couple from Quebec - they were loaded down! and towing a trailer! I honestly can't imagine what it must have been like to handle that huge bike, 2 up with all of that stuff. They were in good spirits and have come through the Wabush fires in an escorted convoy.


Our day was progressing well - we stopped for a break a few hours outside of Happy Valley and Mike rolled in behind us.

Mike had started the day in Happy Valley and had ridden to Port Hope Simpson and was now doubling back to Happy Valley (just a small 800 plus km on gravel!). Mike turned out to be a great riding companion and would join us for the next few days.


Rare shot of Kman and me taken a few hours before arriving in Happy Valley.

The rest of that afternoon would turn into a very challenging ride - we encountered the graders several times and the wind had kicked up to the point where that the gusts would push you all over the road when standing on the pegs. The gravel was now far more difficult and there were several full-on OH SHIT moments. With every km that passed I felt like I was earning my stripes and paying my dues on the Translab...

We finally rolled into Goose bay totally knackered! Yours truly feeling wiped!!


Kman rolls in on the perfect tank! The KLR was just sputtering as it rolled into the pumps - no extra fuel required. I'm 100% sold that these bikes are the best bang for you buck by a long shot.


Now where to stay in Goose Bay??
Bear Creek West is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-02-2013, 08:41 PM   #45
benwr
Gnarly Adventurer
 
Joined: Jul 2012
Location: Kenora, ON
Oddometer: 110
hahaha - "kenora dinner jacket blowing open in wind"
benwr is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Share

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

.
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump


Times are GMT -7.   It's 03:44 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.5
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ADVrider 2011-2014