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Old 08-30-2011, 05:55 PM   #1
Dmarino OP
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Eek Three Dirt Noobs Attack TLab! (TLab, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia)

Well I'm happy to report that after 5123 miles my Father, good friend Aaron, and I survived our Translabrador adventure . Between August 13th-27th we traveled and the weather could not have been better. I was a truly amazing experience. GIven that none of us had any dirt experience we felt it prudent to orderer up a pile of TKC80s to give us the best chance of coming home in one piece. My 4 month old tiger800 now has 13,000 miles on it and I love it!

Riders and the steeds
Aaron (the Buddy) - Vstrom 650
Dominick (Meee) - Tiger800
Mike (The Dad) - Tiger 800



Most definitely prepared for a flat, or a wheelie .


My initial pack job, I lost the extra tire after a test drive.


We also must thank ADVRider for the vauable information that made this trip possible. To see our extensive planning document follow this link (Requires a google account).


Day 1, Aug 13th (468 Miles)
Day 2 Aug 14th (435 Miles)
In the interest in getting to the good stuff asap lets cram hump day 1 and 2 together.



Aaron made it over the evening of the 12th and we spooned on his Knobbies late in the evening. We then took off around 8am. While riding through Michigan the fear hit me! I had forgot my heated vest!!! Well by the trusty Triumph dealer we go to look for a replacment as we can't loose any time. After calling my GF via the Sena/iPhone it turns out crazy me had packed the vest. Being that we were near the dealer we stopped in to show off our pack mules and to get the Dads tps monitors enabled. This ate into the day as they had an issue programing the monitors but did present us a nice surprise.



The dealer sent us to a ferry that I had never heard of. We sipped from Triumph Detroit and caught the ferry from Marine city. I might never use the bridge again! The ferry cost $4 each and there was only a 5 minute wait. Best of all we had already hit the first ferry.

Oh yes the father and I had added sheepskin pads to our seats. They would prove to be a nice addition to an already good seat.




I'm on a boat..


We found a hotel in Kingston and promptly hit the local Italian joint for happy hour. The entertainment for the evening was provided local harley enthusiast informing us that he could hot wire our bikes .



On to day two!!!

Eastward bound we were, early. We headed up 40 to Riviere Malbaie, yep they don't speak the english too well here. We ended up booking our room through the travel information center and having some amazing local brews.

The can fended off the crazy tailgaters








The wait staff at http://www.grilladelaboheme.com/ spoke good english and was very friendly. Yes the beer was amazing as well.


Alright hump days over, good stuff to start soon!
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Old 08-30-2011, 05:58 PM   #2
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looking forward to the rest...
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:04 PM   #3
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Damned new job, I was supposed to be on this trip!!!
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And we all know the basic truth: a bike will get you through a time of no money better than money will get you through a time of no bike.
'75 CB550F: Cafe Frankenbike ---'82 XV920: The Cruiser---'01 Ninja 250: Wifey's Bike---'00 KLR685: The adventure bike
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:47 PM   #4
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Subscribed!
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Old 09-04-2011, 08:09 PM   #5
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C'mon, Dom, we want the rest of the details! Quit working and drinking beer and post the rest of the ride!
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Old 09-05-2011, 03:42 AM   #6
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Don't get excited, he did the same thing on STN. One post and the story's over. It was looking like a very interesting story!
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Old 09-05-2011, 12:32 PM   #7
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Day 3, Aug 15th (367 Miles)
Riviere Malbaie to Just outside of Relais-Gabriel



On Monday morning the 15th we woke up to wonderful weather. Being that this was hotel night #2 we attacked the continental breakfast and set course for Tadoussac, our first planned ferry crossing. It was neat to start to push into regions that were more desolate and we all were becoming very excited for what was to come later in the day and week.



Approaching the ferry crossing in Tadoussac Aaron and I remained on our bikes while my father got off his and best I can recall started doing his yoga stretches in line. Well turns out when they open the ferry up you rush on is as fast as possible. Well that being said quite a few cars passed my Dad in the handful of seconds it took him to get back on his bike and going.















Pre being super nasty


If Aaron brought his good camera mayby I'd get some good closeups! Eh, you prob dont want that anyways .


After Baie-Comeau we headed north towards Manic5 and might I tell you that parts of this road were fantastically twisty. Short of what we would later discover in Vermont this was nearly the most fun riding (paved) we had. That being said make sure your suspension is up to the task as Aaron was killing his vstrom stock suspenders on the rough sections.



Aaron Goofing Off



Your host on this adventure can be spotted here


Passing what I believe to be Manic 2


A typical construction stop complete with count down clock. No more yoga incidents with the dad :).




The Dad! I was very impressed as this was our first long ride together and I had no idea how hard we could push.



144 seconds never felt so long!




Once at Manic5 we took a load off and went on the 3pm tour. They provided us with an english intro and english guide to the rest of the tour. They were friendly and it was a fun experience. On a side note Hydro Quebec apparently picks the most attractive tour guides from Quebec as our tour guide could have easily been Ms. Quebec.

View from the top


Construction Traffic was heading down this 18% slope at speeds that were resulting in drifts. Yes that is the same road you get to climb leaving Manic 5. This was where we would hit dirt for the first time.


View of the reservoir that took something like 13 years to fill.


After concurring the hill we headed towards Relais-Gabriel.

One of the more more scenic pullouts


The camps spot just outside of Relais-Gabriel was nice and we met some locals that said it would be just fine to camp. This was my first time ever "Stealth Camping". GPS coordinates are available in our planning document at the beginning of this RR.













Coming soon, abandoned airfields and flipped over trucks!!!!
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Old 09-05-2011, 12:34 PM   #8
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Sweet! An update!
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Old 09-05-2011, 12:35 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by SR1 View Post
Don't get excited, he did the same thing on STN. One post and the story's over. It was looking like a very interesting story!
No need to be a turd!

Edit: Life gets busy and it was/is hard to make time but now that life (post trip) has settled a bit I'll get cracking ;).
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Old 09-05-2011, 12:40 PM   #10
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Enjoying this!! Looking forward to more!
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Old 09-05-2011, 12:50 PM   #11
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Enjoying this!! Looking forward to more!
Thanks to you and everyone. Working on the next day now. It's quite an investment of time to process all of the raw files and review the gpx files. Fun nonetheless and glad to do it! Now we just have to convince the GF that I am to do the rest of this immediately .
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Old 09-05-2011, 02:35 PM   #12
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Enjoying the pics of the Tigers! Sorry I missed this trip, although there's no way I would have made it on an RT and I ran out of riding days anyway.
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Old 09-05-2011, 02:41 PM   #13
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Day 4, Aug 16th (278 Miles)
Just outside of Relais-Gabriel to Gabbro Lake (1-2 hours outside Churchill Falls)



After packing up after a light evening shower we headed off for a day for challenging TransLab action!. The day would be the day where we really got a feel for what TransLab had to offer. The road surface varied wildly and the scenery was wonderful.

Lets kick it off with a salute! I shot many of these pictures with a circular polarizer which really helps with the skies.


Every warning you have heard about the shoulders being very soft is very true.


After dodging some trucks I have to admit to a little grin when we came across this . He still had his fourways on when we rolled up but was not at the scene. Right before this while approaching a bridge another truck got on the hooks after what we guess was spotting us waiting for him on the other side. Given that he was traveling at far too high a rate for this road his trailer drifted out. It was quite a scene to see. He recovered and passed at a comfortable rate.





Into Gagnon




Still holding up swimmingly. Have I mentioned yet that this bike kicks ass?!?!?!?


So here is where it gets good.... We were riding around Gagnon and got on a side road down by the lake that was quickly detonating. Rather push back out to the main paved road we farted around and imagine my surprise when it spit us out onto the end of this.....







Now you may be thinking to yourself "is that an abandoned 1 mile long airstrip?", why yes it was. Being that we are responsible motorcyclists we certainly did not partake in any of the following....
-Drag races
-LeeParks Drills
-Wheelies
-Jumping random objects

In all seriousness we left no trace but had an amazing time!!!




Before Labrador City we dropped into Fermont to check out the big huge truck as well as the design of the town. Very neat but only really worth a drive through from what we saw.



Like Father Like Son


Rare photo of your author






Fermont


Famous TLab Dust


Hiiiiii


Whohooo! They skpeadaenglish here!


Blooper..


And got it!


Random TLab PitStop






Weather could not have been better. Yes there is pavement into and out of LabCity, better ride this road soon.


Now I'm normally the one to get excited about things but for one it was my dad going crazy. About 2h after LabCity we spotted this camping spot off the road. Naturally "Approved Access" had to be approved for us right? After riding in here my dad yelled out "I know where fairies come from!". Yes this cam spot was that beautiful.

Located @ N53 24.659 W65 01.849









We then rode back on the power line access road to discover yet another amazing secluded lake.








Finally we built a fire, had a nice camp meal, and slept with only some fear from all of the tracks we found.


The ground was a site to see




















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Old 09-05-2011, 02:45 PM   #14
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Thats all for today but ill work on some more this week! Thanks everyone for reading.
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Old 09-05-2011, 03:19 PM   #15
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Cool! What an experience it must have been to be able to share that ride with your father.
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