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 03-24-2014, 07:13 AM   #16
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
On a Monday morning I packed my bike (which takes forever) and said goodbye to my gracious host Adam and his girlfriend Emily. Off I went to Yellowknife.

Again, my route was not the most interesting, as I was opting for efficiency over interest. I didn't actually take this lovely road. I was stopped here to put on rain gloves.


Evil rain clouds to start the day.


I'd heard that gas stations up north were few and far between, so I stopped at The Tire to get a one gallon gas can.


This little puppy was good for another fifty kilometres or so. I ended up using it once when I ran the tank dry in northern Alberta.


Rain! The rain was brutally constant approaching Edmonton and beyond.


Traffic got more and more sparse as I made my way north. This is HWY 35, which is known as The Mackenzie Highway, which goes all the way to the Alberta/NWT border.


Not much traffic up here!


I stopped for the night in High Level, Alberta, a few hours from the border.
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:14 AM   #17
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
Back on the road the next day heading north.


This would finally be a day with no rain!


Listening to my MP3 player, I was suddenly overcome with sadness. I was missing Allie terribly. We had been apart for two long weeks. I pulled over to commemorate the moment. The road I was on was desolate and beautiful.

The song I was listening to was Norah Jones' "The Long Way Home".


First of many warnings.


The past summer was pretty terrible for wild fires in Alberta. I passed many patches of scorched forest right beside the highway. I could actually smell the fragrance of charred wood. I wasn't even completely sure if I could get through the area, as they had closed this highway just a week before due to the fire and smoke.


There were so many firefighters on active duty because of the wild fires that they had to live out of tents at this firefighting depot.


Best sign of the trip, although every bison warning sign was fun too.
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:17 AM   #18
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507


More straight roads... but lovely weather put me in a better mood.


Something was burning up ahead. I first thought it was one of the wild fires, but later figured out it must be controlled burning of some kind.


You have to take this ferry across the Mackenzie River to get to Yellowknife. It's free and it's super efficient, going back and forth across the river without pausing.


On the right is Deh Cho Bridge, which will put this ferry out of commission. But the bridge is well behind schedule.





On the other side of the river.
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:17 AM   #19
Hikerjms
Shaft Drive
 
Hikerjms's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2004
Location: Dumfries, VA.
Oddometer: 63
Wink Thanks

Great trip post!
Hikerjms is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:18 AM   #20
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
Look out for bison!


More arrow straight roads.


Don't forget to look out for bison!


Every kilometre or so, there was a weird perfectly rectangular man made pond. Didn't know what they were for.

ADDENDUM: I just did some Googling and found out this is a "borrow pit" left over from road construction. Materials are dug out of the ground, and the remaining pit becomes a pond.


Don't hit the bison!
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:18 AM   #21
Bultaco206
Back-to-back motos suck
 
Bultaco206's Avatar
 
Joined: Feb 2007
Location: Mineral Point, WI
Oddometer: 1,859
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hikerjms View Post
Great trip post!
+1

More, please. I would love to ride across Canada.
__________________
'07 DL650, '06 DR650, '06 KLX351, '97 DR350, '83 XR350R (vintage GP racer), '74 Bultaco Alpina (trials)
Bultaco206 is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:20 AM   #22
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
Forlorn lakes dotted the landscape.





BISON SIGHTING!

My first ever bison sighting. Pretty amazing. I was becoming afraid that I wouldn't see any, but it was true that you're pretty much guaranteed to see one on this route.


All the bison I saw travelled in herds, usually with a large, shaggy alpha male and a few calves and many sizes of bison in between.


At a pullout.


At every pullout, I was swarmed by either deer flies or black flies. At this stop, it was deer flies. Supposedly they give painful bites, and will even bite repeatedly, but I was never bitten by one.


My second bison herd.




And a third herd of bison. By now, it was getting boring... Just kidding.





Watch out for... you know what!
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:22 AM   #23
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
Made it!


And I rendezvous with Katherine, who is flying in from Nunavut this day.


About 1800 kms from Calgary to Yellowknife in two days. 6947 kms for the whole trip so far.


Next day Katherine give me a tour of her boring workplace, Trinity Helicopters. Yawn. She maintains helicopters or something.


The red arrow sign seems to have been applied by Captain obvious.





Katherine lays out her spiffy new tool roll. She told me she still has many, many tools on her wish list. A woman's tool shopping is never done!


Wednesday was Wing Night at The Black Night pub, so we went there with Jack and Roberto.


The Black Knight is a Yellowknife institution. Sadly, there were no fist fights or patrons getting booted out.


And Katherine's company is advertised on the coasters! How cool!


So I ordered two dozen "Wicked Wings", which is a level of hotness not even mentioned on the menu (that sounds like a pick-up line). The cook basically just made a special batch of wings using whatever fatal seasonings he had on hand, including cayenne paste.

I must say I was impressed with them. They were perhaps the hottest wings I'd ever had, and after half a dozen, I was sweating! Roberto tried one of them, and had to gulp down a beer and two mugs of water to calm the burning. I ended up finishing all of them except for this one!



Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:27 AM   #24
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
Downtown Yellowknife. There is an odd sheen of newness here, since none of the buildings are very old.


The skies over Yellowknife are constantly abuzz with small aircraft.


Colourful houseboats in Yellowknife Bay. Check out the capsizing one.


On the weekend, Katherine and I went for a walk up the road from where she lives towards Old Town, which is where Yellowknife was originally settled. This boardwalk nature trail was on the way.


Old Yellowknife is a visual feast of bright colours and rickety and charming structures. Even the sheds and greenhouses are interesting.


We walked down Ragged Ass Road, which was once the home to poor miners. It's now lined with very expensive homes. People kept stealing the street sign, so they replaced it with this one.


Signs of Yellowknife's mining heritage. But today, they dig for diamonds, not gold.





This is how people park their vehicles in Yellowknife.


Katherine beside a 1945 600 hp Pratt & Whitney radial plane engine (and no, I didn't know that offhand).
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:29 AM   #25
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
Katherine and I went for a ride out along the Ingraham Trail, which is a road leading east out of town towards recreational country.


The winding road was dotted with beautiful lakes. Katherine borrowed the helmet from a cruiser bike riding friend from work.





Katherine makes a panoramic shot with her new digital camera.





This is Giant Mine, just outside of town.


Giant Mine produced 220 000 kgs. of gold, and closed in 2004.


I had to pose with this sign, as it's in the opening of the reality TV show "Ice Pilots", which is about Yellowknife's Buffalo Airways. In that opening, the temperature depicted is a lot lower than it was this day.


After a lovely stay with Katherine, it was time to head back to Toronto. On the way out of town, I stopped by Katherine's work one last time.


She was busy working on this...


I'm guessing she was adjusting the what-cha-ma-callit and shimming the thing-a-ma-jig. I would have helped, but I needed to get going.


Bye Katherine!
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:32 AM   #26
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
The highway out of Yellowknife.

I'm feeling kind of melancholy at this point. It felt sad leaving Katherine, and I was worried about Katherine and her job, as it was up in the air at this point.


More bison!


I should have had the Bison Mixed Grill for dinner. You can order that at some Yellowknife restaurants.


This was cool to see. A number of the bison would "wallow". The bison would lie on its side or back and grind itself in the dirt. No one knows for sure why they do this, but with the number of deer flies around, my guess is that they're giving themselves a good scratch.


Oh crap... Dark clouds moving in (as per usual).








Behind me is this... BAD!


In front of me is this... GOOD!


This explains why roads up here are so long and straight... The land is pancake flat for the most part.


My goal at this point is just to get home quickly, and I make it from Yellowknife to the Alberta border in seven hours.


I love the asymmetrical design of power poles here.


Yet another stop to fiddle with my rain gear.





I'll spend the evening in North Battleford, Saskatchewan, which lies right on the Trans Canada.
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:33 AM   #27
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
Here's one of the many resident kitties of the Battlefords Inn. The entire reception desk counter was covered in kitty. I had to go to four motels in order to find one that was reasonably priced ($75 in this case). Usually, you can use your intuition to figure out which motel is cheapest. Using intuition, crappiest=cheapest, most of the time, but not always.


Another on-and-off rainy riding day.





I managed to fit a few interesting back roads into my route this day, but buckets of rain made things somewhat oppressive.
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:34 AM   #28
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
At this point, a massive, dark storm front sweeps in from the north. I think I can out ride it, but I am very violently hit by a hurricane force cross wind which threatens to literally blow me off the highway. I try leaning into the wind, but it's so gusty and so powerful that I realize it's actually dangerous, especially since I'm sharing the highway with big rigs.


I consult my GPS and find the tiny town of Carberry, Maitoba, just a few kilometres off the Trans Canada. Light rain begins to fall as I check into the Carberry Motor Inn. Then the skies open up just as I park my bike in front of my motel room.


The word for this is type of rainfall is biblical. I watch through the window of my motel room as the flood waters rise rapidly and sweep my bike away in a river of destruction... Just kidding. It was raining pretty hard.


Sweet deal! At $44.80, including tax and all the one-ply toilet paper you can use, this is the best (cheapest) deal of the trip. Luckily there's nowhere good to hang yourself from, so I make it through the night.


Main street Carberry.





I was apparently still on some kind of hot wings kick, so I got an Original 16 draft ($2 each, I kid you not), and a basket of "Third Degree" wings in the hotel bar. These were very good, spicy wings.
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:36 AM   #29
Superzoom OP
Studly Adventurer
 
Superzoom's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2007
Location: Toronto
Oddometer: 507
I was blessed with almost no rain the next day.











I stop for the evening in Nipigon, Ontario at this surprisingly expensive motel.


There was a microwave in my room, so I had this for breakfast the next day, along with a Coffee Crisp.


Morning of the last day of my trip.


The moon is still clearly visible at 6 am.


I ride through Ontario like a man on a mission, stopping only to take on and let go of liquids (gas, water, pee). I need to cover 1300 km today, and don't want to do much of that after dark.

I stop somewhere in Muskoka to take this picture (I'm a sucker for beautiful skies), twelve hours into the day's ride.



And I'm back in Toronto just after 8 pm, so I avoided any night driving.


This day I was on the road for fourteen hours, and only stopped for a total of seventy-two minutes, which is pretty good for a motorcycle. I've covered over 12 000 kms. on my odyssey and gone through four provinces and one territory and a set of tires.

I give Allie a huge hug when I come through the door to our condo. I have decided two things for sure... One, I really, really need to get some waterproof motorcycle boots. And two, I never want to be apart from Allie for this long again.


THE END
Superzoom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-24-2014, 07:40 AM   #30
Superhawk
Studly Adventurer
 
Superhawk's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2007
Location: Flatlands of NJ
Oddometer: 673
Great report ! Did you figure out how to solve dumb problem 's #1 and 2 ? im guilty of both on long trips and still cant seem to slow down and enjoy the scenery. -- just saw your latest post -- guess not :)
Superhawk 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 07:07 PM.


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