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Old 07-06-2011, 04:24 PM   #1
SoSlow OP
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Joined: Jan 2010
Location: Manitoba
Oddometer: 933
SoSlow... Riding to BC

Somewhere around two years ago, I had this great idea to go and visit my sister and her family out in Victoria. At the time, however, I'd only been riding for a year so I didn't feel confident enough to try it. I really started planning it around eight or nine months ago. Just me, the KLR, and a tent. Initially, my wife thought I was crazy but she has been enormously supportive of the trip - I'm very, very grateful.

So I busied myself with maps and equipment lists and things I needed for the bike, thinking I had plenty of time to get everything sorted out. Well, time flies - I leave tomorrow right after work, and I'm in full-on panic mode. Do I have all the tools I need? Do I have too much stuff? Will the bike make the trip? Will I make the trip?

It's funny how when you're six months away from a trip you're really excited about it and maybe a little nervous... but when you're six DAYS away, you're really nervous and maybe a little excited.

The plan is to take the KLR and spend 23 days on the road. Ten days outbound, five days on Vancouver Island, and eight days back. I'm more a country boy than a city boy, so the objective is to avoid cities wherever possible and try to stay off the biggest roads for most of the way.

Here's the plan:

Day 1 - Winnipeg, MB -> Brandon, MB. Good shakedown run.
Day 2 - Brandon, MB -> Oyen, AB. Saskatchewan, I like you... but I can visit you any weekend I want.
Day 3 - Oyen, AB -> Canmore, AB.
Day 4 - Canmore, AB -> Valemount, BC.
Day 5 - Valemount, BC -> Clearwater, BC.
Day 6 - Clearwater, BC -> Williams Lake, BC.
Day 7 - Williams Lake, BC -> Nimpo Lake, BC.
Day 8 - Nimpo Lake, BC -> Bella Coola, BC.
Day 9 - Take the 25 hour ferry from Bella Coola to Port Hardy, BC. I decided to take the 25h ferry because: a) I'll probably never be in the area again, and b) It gets in at 0900 the next morning so I can get in a full day riding.
Day 10 - Port Hardy, BC -> Gordon Bay PP. I'll meet my sister and her family and friends here, and we'll stay for a couple of days.
Day 12 - Gordon Bay PP -> Victoria, BC. Halfway point. A couple of days to rest. Change the oil, re-pack, and get ready for the trip home.
Day 15 - Victoria, BC -> Cache Creek, BC.
Day 16 - Cache Creek, BC -> Chain Lake / Link Lake / Summerland, BC. I'm hoping to squeeze into the campsites at either Chain or Link Lake, but failing that, I can get in at Summerland.
Day 17 - Chain Lake / Link Lake / Summerland, BC -> Grand Forks, BC.
Day 18 - Grand Forks, BC -> Toad Rock Campground, BC.
Day 19 - Toad Rock Campground, BC -> Sparwood, BC. Last day in BC...
Day 20 - Sparwood, BC -> Cavan Lake, AB.
Day 21 - Cavan Lake, AB -> Weyburn, SK or Brandon, MB, depending on conditions and how I feel. Sorry about that, Saskatchewan.
Day 22 - Weyburn, SK -> Brandon or spend an extra day in Brandon.
Day 23 - Brandon, MB -> Winnipeg, MB.

At least, that's the plan. I'm also planning to spend some time on FSRs and trails between Clearwater and Williams Lake as well as between Summerland and Grand Forks.

I've never done an RR before, and quite a few of the places I'm hoping to stay at do not have wireless, so I think this will be an RR in two parts - the first part will be "live", when I'll post whenever I can, and I'll do the second part after I get home to fill in all the blanks and post more pictures/stories.

We'll see what happens. I've got no ego when it comes to riding - I just enjoy it a lot. I'm hoping that 24 days from now I'll be rolling up the driveway, covered in dead bugs and smelling of exhaust and fresh air with a giant smile on my face. But... I may be posting in two days saying I broke the KLR and am in a Greyhound station, waiting for my bus home.

Either way, it's going to be an adventure!

Oh, and one last thing - I'll be running a SPOT tracker - if you want to see where I am, check it out:

SoSlow screwed with this post 07-06-2011 at 04:27 PM Reason: Added SPOT link
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