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skierd 02-25-2012 12:40 AM

Chasing Dreams, vol. 2
A year ago I was a very different man. I was physically well but mentally and emotionally I was broken. Has it really only been a year? Almost to the day...

I figured out a lot on that ride. First and foremost, stock spark plugs only. :lol: Let go of the planning and just ride. It took me over two weeks of fighting a schedule and itinerary that was completely self imposed before I realized I was being absolutely ridiculous and needed to relax and flow. I refined my pack list and gear wants/need immensely. I have zero doubts about what to bring with me or what to wear and have the necessary tweaks

Most importantly I think I finally found the courage to live for myself.

From my last post in the previous Ride's thread

Oh well, everything was still the same. Except for me. Now nearly 6 months later, all them are gone from my life, I'm finishing my final semester in college. She gave me the heartache to love the Blues, and the rest gave me the impetus to travel. Winter's closing in fast again, first snow was actually yesterday. But this time I gotta plan, I've got a direction, and a goal. Next year, anywhere but here... time to get busy living.
I got busy living alright. I busted my ass and graduated in December with a degree in Art+Design. Then I started working toward a life that would never have me stuck again, allowing me the freedom to travel and do work that I like for the benefit of that goal. Being realistic in the fact that making a living as an artist is several years and lots of source material, practice, and hustling away, I want to work in the beverage industry or in motorcycles.

Long story short... I found a job bartending. In Alaska, for a cruise line's hotel. Starting in early April, through the end of September. The goal... well there is no goal. I've got an idea to follow the sun after the season is over and end up with a similar gig someplace warm over the winter... or maybe just hiding out in Baja for a while until the next season gets ready to start. Or not. Or maybe I'll hate it and end up working a 9-5 somewhere.

My trusty steed, as always, is my 2008 Yamaha WR250R. It has since had an X change so I'm running 17" wheels front and rear instead of the usual 21/18. I've also racked up a total of just under 31,000 miles on the old girl with nary a problem. Coolant and hoses were changed last week, so was the oil. Swapped the worn out stock seat foam for a seat concepts foam and cover. Heated grips are en route as is heated jacket, glove liners, and a dual controller. My trusty Nikon D40 will be doing photo duties along with my not so trust DroidX. No routes, except my old TAT maps, in my GPS just way points. My mountain hardware +35 bag is getting replaced by a Marmot never summer, and I'm shipping most of my clothes up ahead of me. Otherwise this is the same kit I've traveled with since 2010.

So why jinx myself again by posting so early? Because I'm terrified mainly... Will I even make it up there? What if I hate it once I'm there? What if i don't make enough to come back down? What if I crash and hurt myself or worse? How am I gonna handle mom crying again? And what would I think of myself in 20 years if I don't go...

But first, I have to get to Alaska. I leave in about a week. (Yes I know its still winter :lol3)

HardWorkingDog 02-25-2012 12:47 AM

What are we both doin' up this late...

Good luck, man :evil

EvilClown 02-25-2012 02:01 AM


rydnseek 02-25-2012 02:47 AM

Good luck, Skierd.. ride safe & may your trail & mind be filled with adventure & clarity.. if you can have both of those at the same time!

Dynamick 02-25-2012 04:32 AM


firefighter651 02-25-2012 05:37 AM

Take the time now,it's better to do things to live than say what IF.Your dream to do this and make it happen is the start?

pbharvey 02-25-2012 05:41 AM

I thought you were selling the Yammy and getting a Duc.

Good luck and have fun.

joenuclear 02-25-2012 06:00 AM

Via Arkansas?

There's no need to go looking for adventure. It will find you.

Best of luck to you.

AZ TOM 02-25-2012 06:26 AM

Good luck. You will suceed & find your way wherever you go. Success is different for each of us. When you find yours you will know it. Should you need any assistance you will have it through this vast network of riders you have become friends with through your help & communication. Be safe & keep us posted when you get time.

DougZ73 02-25-2012 06:57 AM

Good luck and ride safe. Subscribed.

My 38 years of advice....everything in life is a journey and learning experience. The good, the bad, the ups and the downs. Take it all in, learn what you can, and bury what you don't want....but learn from it all. Took me 38 years to realize it, but anything short of dying is a good thing and can be learned from.

yru 02-25-2012 11:32 AM

Yahoo! Off to the Great White North.
Skierd, there seems to be a lot of wisdom being thrown your way, so here is my 2 bits. Make sure your tire pressure is correct and bring plenty of rubbers. Best of luck man!

Motoduc1 02-25-2012 11:52 AM

Go, young man. Go!

JaxObsessed 02-25-2012 12:44 PM


Originally Posted by motoduc1 (Post 18070874)
go, young man. Go!

+1 :d

Yaozer 02-25-2012 01:46 PM

Subscribed. Follow your heart.

skierd 02-26-2012 11:05 PM

So Saturday will be my last day at my current job. Next sunday a friend is coming to buy the last few bits of furniture, and I suspect that will be the day when my car's new owner will arrive. Therefore I'm looking to leave in the morning on March 5, giving me a maximum of 24 days to get to Bellingham and board the ferry. So far, I've plotted everything from a direct 2800 mile route to a roundabout 5500 mile meander through the lower 48. The last 2 legs of the trip are easy enough: the ferry trip, and the 650 mile run from Haines to Fairbanks.

Between Maryland and Bellingham? I'm still trying to pick a general direction. I think I'm going to play in Appalachia for a little while, then start cutting west across the middle of the country. Basically going to let the weather push me in one direction or another. I've gotten a few very very generous offers for room and board along the way so far, and since I have the time I'm happy to oblige.

Heated grips (Hot Grips) arrived yesterday from Lockitt Products. I purchased a used but well cared for Aerostich Roadcrafter from a local good-guy (wreckchecker here on ADV) earlier today along with some fleece pants and a down jacket for warmth up north. Hoping my heated gear arrives soon...

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