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Old 05-03-2011, 04:36 PM   #1
Z_HARSH OP
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(FAKE) Alaskan Adventure Ride

I’ve been debating for a while whether or not I should write up this little story but I have to admit, l love looking at these pictures and writing my first little story, Baja Single-Line Tour, was pretty fun too. I took a ton of pictures up there and so here it goes, my take on probably the most well documented destination around here since I have already done the second (not to say that it is not justified though).

So FAKE, why?

Yea, I kind of break the main theme on this one; I didn’t even ride my bike up. Yea, I trailerd my KLR up, can you believe it? I know what you are thinking, but I can handle the ridicule…I have thick skin. I do have my own justification though (well it convinced me at least). But first, a little overview:

Me (Zach) and my girl (Tina) were lucky enough to get the opportunity to spend some time exploring Alaska.




We were accompanied by an ugly dog named Chuwe, aka Chubacca, aka Rat-Dog, aka Rat-Dog-Fish-Face………:




We did some riding 2-up:




And I did quite a bit of riding alone:




Saw some perrrrrrty sunsets:




And even did a bit of hiking:




We saw a big mountain:




And I found a pinch of mud:




Saw a few glaciers:




And caught a fish or two (or sometimes just tried):




Found some cool mushrooms:




And rode to some mountaintops (or as close as I could get):




I rode a bunch of beach:




And saw some old mines:




Spent some time with the family:




And did the little Haul Road thing-a-ma-bob:




Saw some animals:




And even some good pavement:




Saw a million million-dollar views:




And found some cool stuff on the way back too:


Photobucket

But before we get going I need to justify myself first……

So, why would anyone trailer a KLR up to Alaska? Well, the main reason (but definitely not to blame everything on her) is that my baby wanted to come and what could I say about that? I figured taking my truck made more sense especially because she really wanted to take the Rat-Dog too. But first let me back up a bit, some people may be interested in how this came together. I was working for a smaller publically traded software company making cold calls for 2 years (I told you I had thick skin didn’t I), but they off-shored the team to the Philippines.

While I was working there I bought a 2008 KLR 650 off the showroom floor (the only acceptable color of course), a 4-plex and moved into one of the units, an F-250 after my Ranger died, a pop-top camper, and rebuilt my grandpa’s homemade trailer. Tina had her summer break from Nurse Practitioner School. However, my little sister, who is in Pharmacy School, is the one that planted the seed. She had to do 6 -week rotations at different pharmacies, so being the adventurous type, she chose Anchorage, Honolulu, Salt Lake City, and Denver. In addition, my parents decided to drive their camper van up there to meet her. I just so happened to be lucky enough to get laid off in time to join them, so I thought I would go up and see what the employment opportunities looked like.

Honestly, I would have loved to ride my bike up there but I’m not set up for that type of an adventure 2-up on my little old KLR at this point. After doing some rough calculations, for an extended trip up there, I figured that restaurants and hotels would outweigh the cost of gas in my truck. Also, my 2 year old bike already had 17,000 miles on it (27,353km) before the trip and I didn’t want to wear it out too fast. But I have to be honest, I am a dirt biker at heart so putting bikes on trailers is not foreign to me and you can go a lot more places without the extra stuff.

Either way, I wimped out and towed it up there and judge me if you must, hopefully I can make up for it though. But for this little story I think I am going to let may little point-n-shoot and Mother Nature do most of the talking, they are much more eloquent than I.
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Old 05-03-2011, 04:52 PM   #2
TallRob
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Unreal photos.......touched up in post?
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Old 05-03-2011, 04:56 PM   #3
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Unreal photos.......touched up in post?

Would you think less of me if I said yes?
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Old 05-17-2011, 04:52 PM   #4
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Would you think less of me if I said yes?
No, I'd say,,,damn your good.
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Old 05-17-2011, 09:28 PM   #5
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Seth S - I'm pretty lucky. So many RRs have done the same for me, glad to give a little in return.



TallRob - HA, thanks! A few came out OK, but I'm not quite to the good stuff yet.
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Old 05-17-2011, 09:51 PM   #6
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The Final Push North

After leaving the Parks we pounded out the miles. There were a few construction zones to deal with; waiting for pilot cars is lame. We smelt a few forest fires and also picked up a couple hitchhikers. I love picking up hitchhikers, you can learn a lot form them, but the old drunk ones can get annoying too. We drove and drove, it was nice to turn up the music and watch the miles float past. Way better than any TV programming if you ask me. Finally, we made it to the Liard Hot Springs. If you happen to be in the neighborhood, do not skip it. It is amazing:

































It was beautiful, and to top it off, it was Tina’s birthday. I acted like I had forgotten it at first but she had an amazing time. After soaking, we headed out and wanted to make it to Whitehorse for dinner. But first, Tina wanted to do the touristy thing and stop for the bison:








She was pretty proud of her pictures, I told her she had the perfect angle on the first one. We laughed at her bison butt shot for a few miles.


You cannot miss this one either; it didn’t keep our attention for long though, we had miles to lay down, or I suppose KMs rather:











Then we pulled into Whitehorse and found a nice little touristy restaurant just before they closed for the night. We had some excellent fish and chips and Tina had an awesome birthday dinner. I don’t remember what the name of the restaurant was, but it looked like an old shack with lots of antique mining stuff and big indoor patio type dining room. I have to say, I was impressed with Whitehorse, it is a cool little town with a decent urban feel.


We didn’t stick around for long though, we drove out of town for a while and found a nice place to pop the top for the night.
The next day Tina drove for a while and it gave me some time to play around with the camera:





The last bit of the Alcan felt like a Mad Max race to the end. There was a bunch of gravel road through the numerous construction sections; it was smoother than the last little paved section before the border though, with all the frost heaves. It would have been fun to wheelie out of the heaves on the bike though, but I’m glad my ceramic pads were working well on the truck. We were stopped at the last construction section and I had made it to where there were only a couple cars in front of us. We got out a while we waited for the pilot car and chatted with the other drivers, there just happened to be an Army couple moving up to the base who also had Colorado license plates. Three Colorado plates in a row; imagine that so far from home.



Finally, the pilot car got there and we slowly followed him for a while, then he turned off and it was on. Then, finally, 3,000 miles later, we made it!!!!!!!!!!







(I love the Steamboat sticker front and center)


Z_HARSH screwed with this post 05-21-2011 at 10:53 AM
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Old 05-21-2011, 11:58 AM   #7
Sandino
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Great report mate!, the most important thing is that you did it, the best way it works out for you!!
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Old 05-21-2011, 01:23 PM   #8
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Liard

Glad you made a stop at Liard River Hot Springs. It's heaven on Earth... even better when your butt's sore from a full day on a KLR
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Old 05-03-2011, 04:58 PM   #9
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Ride you're own ride! Trailer or not, looks like you had a fantastic time.

Mind sharing your camera specs? I have a Canon SLR that's really heavy with the lens so I'm curious what you carried. Beautiful shots!
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Old 05-03-2011, 05:23 PM   #10
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FAR FROM FAKE! pictures look amazing.
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Old 05-03-2011, 05:25 PM   #11
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It is just an old Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX07, it has done me well for years but died a the end of the Baja trip this year. I just got a Cannon S95 to replace it.

I'm really not a photographer, I just like taking pictures.
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Old 05-03-2011, 05:32 PM   #12
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Im in... and jealous.
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Old 05-03-2011, 05:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Z_HARSH View Post
It is just an old Panasonic Lumix DMC-FX07, it has done me well for years but died a the end of the Baja trip this year. I just got a Cannon S95 to replace it.

I'm really not a photographer, I just like taking pictures.
Doesn't that little Panasonic Lumix rock??? Mine did, and fortunately it did not die in Baja...

http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=679708

Cheers,
Steve
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Old 05-03-2011, 06:39 PM   #14
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Really great Photo's...
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Old 05-04-2011, 09:36 AM   #15
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Sheesh! It's like waving a banana in front of a caged monkey. Thanks for making me salivate. (Now how do I pick this lock?)

Great pics
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