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Old 01-30-2013, 01:14 AM   #1
AJ990R OP
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Location: MKE,WI
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My motorbike adventures, & my Wisconsin to Alaska run (June 2012)

Hello Everyone,
I thought it was time I take a crack at a Ride Report, and share some pics and my expierences. Since I come here & enjoy everyone else's so much!! I have deep respect for the amount of time many put into their RRs. Although mine is gonna be fairly short & sweet, since being a mechanic, I always have to go back to work sooner or later...
My bike adventures seemed to evolve over the past couple years to my Alaska run. I like, most all bikes. I think I have a serious passion for motorcycles, grew up with dirtbikes. But became addicted to the speed factor and I do take it to the track.
Unfortunately, now that I'm looking back, I wish I had bought a higher quality camera on my trips & took more photos, but it is all stored upstairs, great memories. New camera is definitely on my list though!
INTRO

My name is AJ



Yes, thats an 1198. I've owned a couple of liter/sport bikes, but this one had a soul. Demontech tuned, rode to a 10.2 @ 133mph with the dry clutch. This bike made you feel alive with the sounds & feelings.


Barber motorsports park, Birmingham, Alabama with STT. Getting stuffed by Chimichanga here. I got my NESBA "A" group bump with this bike


But growing up in the midwest, yet having traveled a fair amount in my short existence. I always wanted to take a road trip out west my whole life, esp on a bike. Track days & CCS racing were killing my bank account(& credit cards!). I now had the freedom & some vacation time to burn. Never having spent anytime on ADV. I quickly put together a rough plan, asked some advice from the one guy I know who has ridden any real distance, borrowed a bike(from my dad 06 DL650), bought some cheap luggage. Over packed. And planned a Iron Butt run.
The plan, early sept 2011, solo run, ride west and hit-up as many twisty mountain roads as possible, go through yellowstone and don't stop until I hit the Oregon coast. A motorcycle adventure. Try to live off the bike as mush as possible, to save money.
A nice guy with his son & a van full of MX bikes insisted on taking this photo of me. He (had a BMW bike) knew exactly what the IB run was & cheered me on. Me, @ about 850mi in on the IB run, Box Elder, South Dakota. With wet feet.

I rode from Milwaukee, Wi to Sheridan, Wy. Clicked off 1070mi in just over 17hrs. Left MKE @ midnight and was in Sheridan for dinner. never exceeded 75mph. Got a hotel room after that run




Camped my first night in Yellowstone. forget the exact elevation, but it was fairly high, it was a cold night

Yellowstone was awesome, rode around bison all over in the roads, typical tourist trap draw backs other wise though. 45mph speed limit

Yellowstones "grand canyon"

three random solo riders


Was neat to see a euro plate, he was nice, had lots of time & support for his trip. Was amazed by his bike set-up, followed him on his blog a little. His bike popped the motor when he got into South America, he also crashed in South America but continued on!


This hwy was awesome, except for the tar stripes








Idaho was awesome



Oregon, getting close to the coast. Didn't know there was a desert in the middle of Oregon though!


When I finally got to the coast it looked like a storm was brewing, locals said its been foggy for several days now, was damp but not raining.


camped on the coast that night, decided to head north up the coast the following day to Washington & Mt Rainier
(a lot of my Wash. pics were blurry)

heading back home on the Colombian river hwy somewhere. Go Wee-Strom!


9 days & 5400mi., the bike had only 6200 mi on before I left, now indicating 11600mi! My dad & brother could not believe the mileage. Good thing I put full synthetic oil in it & fresh tires before I left. Loved the trip. Hated my I-pod music by the end. No speeding tickets. Worked that 650 motor hard since I like to ride a faster pace. If you would have told me after that trip that I would be riding to alaska, I would have laughed at you.

Since it seems all good things come to an end. The Ducati, was kinda like a hot high maintenance girlfriend, who was just no good for you because all you do is go out & spend money, but you didn't care if you got caught up in the moment. Or a highly addictive drug...exhaust, Nemesis, slipper clutches, tires & more rear tires.
I was done street riding sportbikes anymore, & no one puts baby in the corner.Never got a single traffic ticket on the Duc. Emma & I saying goodbye to her before trading her in.


My rebound, fresh from the dealer. It just made sense, the R model,reduced price, yup throw the Akras on right away! Got the Ktm home early Dec 2011. Within one month of owning this bike and reading a article about D2D and seeing pics....the planning began

farkles


test trip, 900mi run to Upper Mi. (spring 2012)




Ready to Rock

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AJ990R screwed with this post 01-31-2013 at 08:47 PM
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Old 01-30-2013, 03:32 AM   #2
one2ride
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Keep going I'm in
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Old 01-30-2013, 03:57 AM   #3
Rutabaga
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Enjoyed that report with my bowl of cereal. Coffee is ready and I'm ready to go to Alaska soon as it shows up.
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Old 01-30-2013, 05:19 AM   #4
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Great intro

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Old 01-30-2013, 05:36 AM   #5
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Great reading thus far brother, no reason to stop now.

I enjoyed seeing a smaller CC bike ride report from the Wee, but also like the new KTM too

I been to the same site in Michigan that you had pictured me thinks, Hancock Mine?
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Old 01-30-2013, 05:43 AM   #6
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Thumb Looking good....keep posting....

I'm in. Looks like it could be one heck of a trip. Nice bike too. I like the panniers on it. Are they KTM boxes?
Ride safe man.
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Old 01-31-2013, 09:40 PM   #7
AJ990R OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blacktruck View Post
I'm in. Looks like it could be one heck of a trip. Nice bike too. I like the panniers on it. Are they KTM boxes?
Ride safe man.
There technically GOBI boxes, but these were ordered from the Ktm catalog, & came with the insignia on it.
Radioman runs pretty much the same exact ones on his F800GS!
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Old 02-01-2013, 10:26 PM   #8
AJ990R OP
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Day 3- getting to the good stuff

June 18 Mon

I didn't wake up too early, all the work trucks were gone, only my bike & the HD were sitting out there. You can kinda see the electra glide in my photo from the balcony. Since I can't take photos, I promised myself to always take a photo where I stayed at night. My neighbor Marty told me, bring a tarp & wrap it around your tent, a 101 uses he said. I asked about parking my bike under the overhang on the sidewalk somewhere but the hotel clerk said no. Didn't want to just let it sit & get rained on. I kept re-organizing my luggage.
It was cool out, overcast looking, I could smell rain in the air.
Enjoyed my free breakfast & thought about my power outlet situation. Luckily the 2011-12 winter Wi season was mild & I rode my bike a lot, & wired a aux power socket & placed it in the "glovebox" because it was better than having a wire loose & running over or under my handlebars to the factory outlet. Could only have one accessory plugged in now, I choose the Gerbing that day. But you had to duct tape the connection or it would loosen after awhile. Also had to duct tape my rain jacket, as it was coming apart at some seams( I had a mini roll of gorilla tape!).
Meet the HD guy, cool guy, strong Texas accent, was heading to Anchorage for a HD rally. Right off the bat mentions " I do not like having to wear a helmet or traveling with out my pistol" He got at least a half hour jump on me leaving.
Rode for a couple hours, light rain on & off, then the landscape began to change dramatically, reminded me of Washington, huge valleys, thick forests, flashing moose warning signs, the interstate was huge & open, lots of RV/campers, light traffic & spread out at that. I remember thinking, getting to the good stuff. Rode through a little city but then the route turned into a two lane hwy. I was wearing a brand new Kali carbon fiber street helmet(light!), was fine the first two days but then it started bothering my eyes from the wind coming through by my chin, making my eyes water bad, figured it would go away...but this went on for hours. Covered the chin area w/duct tape, fixed!
Rode into Dawson Creek, begining of the AK HWY It began to thunder & lightning in the distance. Fueled up & lubed up the chain(tried to do that at least twice a day), minding my buisness. It was approaching dinner time, some local prick next to me at the pumps says, exact words "whats with you damn americans?...you all have to drive to Alaska?". I looked at him & shrugged my shoulders, said "dunno", that was it. It was Monday, maybe he had a bad day at work. As I looked into the main st in Dawson Creek, there was a steady flow of RV/camper traffic.
It started to rain hard, jumped a curb w/the Katoom at a storefront that looked closed, to hold up for a while. Talked to a lady for 45mins about everything. She told me, Dawson Creeks population was roughly 10k at that time & is expected to reach 100k in 10 years b/c the pipeline & dam projects in the area. I guess Americans are migrating there for the good jobs. I figured out Canada's economy is booming, everything was expensive up here. She told me where to pick-up some bear spray, I wanted some, it was illegal to sell/buy in Wi.
Talked to the guy at the sporting goods store for quite sometime as well, he gave me lots of advice, he said I'll be driving through BC's serengeti. I held up in Dawson Creek for like three hours. Meet more nice people than pricks The sporting good store was literally just 200ft north of the famous begining of Alaska hwy white rock monument. I skipped that photo, was raining a bit yet.
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Old 02-01-2013, 11:03 PM   #9
AJ990R OP
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day 3 cont

June 18


With in a half hour of leaving Dawson creek, things were different, I could tell I was way up here now. I honestly did not see so much as a deer the past three days. Had the camera on a lanyard around my neck like a tourist. Rode by this guy, busted a u-turn to get a pic, no one was around, & he just stopped in the road & so did I, we just starred at each other for a few seconds. First bear I've ever seen not in captivity, from the seat of a bike of course. little brown bear

this got my blood going
only photo not a complete blur
only cruised @ 50mph for a long time, scanning for wildlife, saw another little black bear by the tree line
then outta no where, the HD guy rips by me & waves

We just cruised together for a while, was nice not being by myself
stopped at a A&W root beer for food in Fort Nelson, he insisted on buying, he only had roughly two weeks to do his trip as well. He said he has done the Iron butt run. He joked he was riding to AK to get a t-shirt and then riding home. He got the oil changed on his bike that day. Told me I looked young to be doing this alone. He was only wearing a half helmet and the skin was literally peeling off his face. I told him your face looks a little sunburned, he said so does yours, my cheeks were only a little red. Good guy. Hoteled it. 536mi


Looking over the Ktm at the hotel, this trip was taking its toll. decided I need to fix my power outlet situation . Heard a rattle from the rear over bumps @ low speeds, the rear floating rotor was really loose. And some bolts were now missing for some of the body work, typical v-twin. Experienced my first real night of no darkness this night. Remember 3 kids rode their MX bikes right through town at 11 @ night while I looked over my bike & thinking some jag off would probadly dial 911 for that where I grew up.
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Old 02-02-2013, 01:25 AM   #10
AJ990R OP
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Day 4 AK HWY!

June 19 tues


Woke up to the HD guy knocking on my door, 7:30ish,all the work trucks were gone, and he said he's hitting the road in 15-20min. There was a NAPA type auto parts store in town. Told him thanks for the invite, but I'm gonna fix a few minor issues w/my bike before I leave town. We said goodbye. I could have went with him, but I'm pretty anal about my bike & wanted to address a few things now, not later.
Was beautiful outside, sunny & warm!
Went to the auto parts store & set-up shop right out front by the main door, so I can see my bike when inside. I try never to let my bike leave my sight. Cannot believe I did not get a pic of this operation. I was giving the bike a full, quick, once over.
I had an amazing amount of tools & supplies on my bike, so much so, I forget where it all is hidden. I've read plenty of RTW reports, got all that stuff! I went into the store & bought pretty much all there male & female auto power sockets. Got wiring & connectors, spare fuses. I had spares of everything now. I spent like $25

some bike maintanence :


1 repaired my satelite radio mount w/epoxy,good to go.
2 ended up repairing the male end of my multi(3)power port assy for the tankbag, made it more rain friendly & ran the wire in to the glovebox now.
3 bike bolt check, swapped some bolts around
4 chain adjustment & lube
5 the rear rotor was no big deal, wasn't gonna fail but a nuisance. seen it before on sportbikes @ the track.
*felt better now

My Ktm
-Has the Akrapovic tune map on it, so she was sucking fuel down like a champ, esp day 2 when running 90mph in the wind. fuel light came on a few times after a 130mi worst mpg 31, best 38mpg. (I know, I shoulda set it to stock for the trip, shoulda woulda coulda)
-but easy on the throttle...could go 200mi on a tank of fuel, running with fuel light on for 35-40mi. Ran it outta fuel once in Wi on purpose to see...rode 57mi w/the light on before it started to cough & sputter.
-had the DB killers in the exh
-didn't use my aux fuel yet-but was a peace of mind having it
-this beast felt like a dirtbike w/these tires! whole bike would vibrate when coming to a stop now compared to the stock pirellis
-can still rip wheelies fully loaded!

worked on the bike for a good hour, just relaxing & taking my time, my stuff sprawled out every where, guys from the store came out & asked if needed anything, someone drove by & stopped and took pics of me working on my bike! I remember a lot of the locals that went into the store would leave their cars idle when they went inside for 10-20min, must be habit from winter.
I felt like a traveling freak show at times, esp at fuel stations.
Now sit back & enjoy this next installement of pics, AK HWY was awesome, not too many people, you never had to stop
because it never got dark now! Was amazing
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Old 02-02-2013, 01:54 AM   #11
AJ990R OP
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Day 4 AK HWY!

June 19










I could never get a shot of a bear looking at me!

Watson Lake, I chose to continue on the Ak hwy,rather than taking the Robert Campbell hwy, I had plans to ride the South Canol rd! Picked up a mini bottle of Grand Marnier & beef jerky ( I always have a big bag of beef jerky in the tank bag, than you can skip a meal if nec)for camping this eve, I had a camping stove & some dehydrated food w/me.








South Canol rd entrance time for a 100+mi backcountry dirt road with nothing on it, it brings you to the Campbell hwy....wanted to camp off that road
I wish rode down the road about 3-4mi & it was gated off due to wash-outs


I was disappointed a bit...but hit the Ak hwy & kept trucking towards Whitehorse
finally camped, & hung out with my neighbors til late, cooked mac-n-cheese for dinner. 1am photo

no flash photo


590mi

not too shabby thus far
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Old 02-02-2013, 05:53 AM   #12
eemsreno
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Just love Alaska Ride Reports, Yours is very good.
You really missed out on the South Canol though.
One of the best roads up that way.
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Old 02-02-2013, 06:03 AM   #13
Paul Simpson
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Big adventure, my friend. I'm with ya and thanks for sharing.
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Old 02-02-2013, 07:01 AM   #14
Themastermike
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Missed it?

I don't think I missed it, but what are the dates of your RR?
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Old 02-02-2013, 07:41 AM   #15
blacktruck
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Thumb Heck of a ride....

Quote:
Originally Posted by Themastermike View Post
I don't think I missed it, but what are the dates of your RR?
Me too. Great story so far. Hoping to go one day soon myself. Gotta see this too.
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